03 August, 2012

Rating my Bluewater Sumilon Island Resort Day Tour Experience

Now that I'm done blogging everything about my Bluewater Sumilon Island Resort day tour, I will now give my verdict.

A day tour in the said resort is pegged at Php1,500.00 on weekdays and Php2,000.00 on weekends and holidays.  Pretty reasonable.  Inclusions are round-trip transfers from Bancogon in Oslob to Sumilon Island (the island is right in the middle of the sea so this is a must), lunch, island activities like snorkeling, trekking and kayaking and use of swimming facilities.

A massage is not included in the day tour package so I had to pay Php1,500.00 for an hour of their Hilot Lamang.  It was okay, but expensive.

What I really love about the place were the picturesque views.  I could be in their Pavilion, in the lagoon or in the beachfront and my views were all spectacular.  A must is to trek to higher ground for a sweeping panoramic view of the sea and Sumilon's neighboring islands.

I also appreciated that the resort built a payag-payag, benches and loungers and installed hammocks around the resort as guests could lounge just anywhere to rest.

When we were there, most of the guests were groups of young professionals but the place is also perfect for families.  They even have a children's playground by the Dive Shop.


Our lunch was a disappointment because the food at the Pavilion was not delicious.  It was limited too that even when some food ran out, they did not bother to replenish.

I was also concerned about the security of our things as they did not provide us with lockers.  They did offer a safety box for our valuables but this comes at a fee of Php100.00 so my friends and I took just one and in there stored our wallets and mobile phones.  As for our other bags, we were told to just leave them in any of the picnic tables or loungers as these are on a first-come, first-served basis.  Whoa.  Just like that.  No claim stubs, no assigned staff.  Nothing.  We decided on leaving our bags by the Dive Shop as it seemed to be the safest knowing that there would be Dive Shop attendants on standby.  

Speaking of the Dive Shop, its changing room was a little untidy as parts of the floor were wet and there were also slipper marks.

The service was okay but I could not help but notice that it was obtrusive.  The staff would greet guests engaged in a conversation or would talk too loud and laugh that lounging guests could hear them.  I also noticed how some of them would not follow proper comportment and bearing.  Many times, I saw their Dive Shop attendants slouching.  I even heard some of them shouting instructions at a companion who was already way up on the beachfront.        

at the Dive Shop

Trekking is a good activity that the resort offers but it disappoints because aside from the panoramic views below, the watchtower and the baluarte, there was nothing else to see.  It would have been more interesting to climb up and while doing so, identify many species of plants and trees endemic to the island.

Another activity that they can offer is bird-watching.  It was fun seeing all those birds but since I was doing it by myself, I was left wondering about the species of the bird I saw.  The management should keep track of all the birds seen in the island then catalogue them for their guests' reference.  As I also got frustrated with just hearing bird calls during our trek, it would help if the resort would provide those interested with a binocular.

I would also strongly recommend that the management invest more on training its staff as for me, it is the service that ultimately defines a company.  

For inquiries about Bluewater Sumilon Island Resort, please visit their official website.  Note that for day tours, they require reservations so they could arrange a boat transfer for you.  Just a tip.  Arrive there early (the earliest boat transfer from Bancogon to Sumilon is at 7:30 AM) so you will have more time to enjoy its facilities and activities until you depart the latest boat transfer back to Bancogon, which is at 5:30 PM.

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