Monday, December 7, 2015

Monday, December 07, 2015
My booked Superior Room
The hotel's al fresco lap pool



Hotels dot the vibrant entertainment district of Diliman in Quezon City despite being an hour or so away from the airport (Ninoy Aquino International Airport). For decades, foreign tourists en route to local destinations did not consider the city for layovers until neighboring cities felt the daunting brunt of Metro Manila's modernization detritus. Scout Rallos Street is one such strip that has joined the roster of other streets named after Filipino boy scouts whose memory shares a space for hospitality brands. With the recent opening of the new B Hotel, a block away from Timog Avenue, the place that was once a pre-war estate is proving to be a served area where tourists, businessmen, and locals can experience a comfortable stay in a city that has endured the dreaded second glance.

B Hotel stands out from the glut of classic hotels for a lot of reasons. It's designed to evoke the unique sensibilities of "Brutalism," a profound movement in architecture that became prominent from the 1950s through the '70s. As a result, its aesthetic appeal crosses the boundaries of a business and a vacation stay the same way that a relevant museum successfully makes a first good impression on any type of visitor. It's impressive at 11 storeys in a landscape that still has a lot of residential bungalows, giving guests unobstructed views of the city.

It's definitely worth coming home to more than once as I realised one weekend. Recently booked at its Superior Room for a staycation, I determined three stellar reasons why the hotel is more than an ephemeral design fad:

Relaxing at the lap pool
The hotel lobby
Bedside view of the bathroom

1. Inspirational Design That's Also Functional

Having stayed in a few fancy hotels that boast of interesting aesthetics, I can tell which ones are expertly designed from those that are not. From some lodgings that failed to impress with minor details to those that challenged my patience with a few technical issues, not all beautiful hotels that shine are truly golden.

In the true design sense, B Hotel is quite impressive. It's got power sockets where they should be -- and there are enough. Mirrors are mindfully installed where reflections are expected to be gazed over. Redefining accessibility, extra space through transparent partitions (like between the bedroom and bathroom) is allowed to transcend constraints. Natural light can travel from as far as the bedroom's expansive window to the shower area with a simple pull of the bathroom blind's cord.

The hotel lobby
The rest of the interiors serve to more than amuse. They can be interestingly engaging. The juxtaposed elements of jarring concrete wall finish and striking red paint effectively compel guests to stare at the stark contrast.

With thoughtful lighting, the playful colors that run through the hallway carpeting make random trips from one's room to the lobby and restaurant memorable. It's like breezing through an interactive museum.

Even basic corners where design can very well be absent have an unconventional display (a vintage bicycle, an exposed plumbing cum art installation, etc.) that pops out from its space, turning the establishment into a comfortable crib and destination in one.

The bathroom details of my booked Superior Room
The hotel hallway
Superior Room details
Poolside bar

2. Modern Facilities For Leisure and Business

Beyond the unusual design, B Hotel is grounded with enough modern facilities to give neighboring lodgings a run for their money.

The al fresco lap pool alone is one strong reason to find one's stay pleasurable at the hotel. I happened to have a refreshing early morning dip there before a scheduled buffet breakfast during my stay. The nearest shore is hours away but the beach resort vibe is certainly palpable at this 3rd floor space. Next to it is a sophisticated ballroom with a 200-seating capacity.

The al fresco lap pool at the 3rd floor
The hotel also has The Lobby Café where guests can sample various dishes, the Pastry Corner for indulging in decadent sweets, and the Mezzanine Bar for unwinding with friends or associates. Going out of the hotel for impulsive cravings won't be a problem.

For those on corporate duty, the hotel's Business Center has two function rooms that cater to private group meetings.

As I discovered meandering at the fifth floor where the gym is, there are enough fitness equipment for guests to tackle. I would have loved to see an extra space for yoga and stretching exercises though. A separate wellness facility for it can probably be an improvement.

Buffet breakfast
(left) Buffet breakfast; (top right) The pastry shop; (bottom right) The fitness facility
The grand opening celebration of B Hotel Quezon City

3. Exciting Location For Staycation and Special Events

What was once a solid dining destination in the '80s, this side of Diliman is now a mix of that and more. Entertainment hubs, spas, and a growing number of hotels can be found in the area where a lot of restaurants still operate. With some parts still dedicated to scattered blocks of residential units, the district can be bustling in one spot and quaint in another. It's certainly not boring to stroll in the area where age-old trees still stand undisturbed. The stretch where B Hotel is located is such one spot where a massive tree can be found to be a perfect shade from the sweltering heat in the city. It's also the same lush green that tamed my tired eyes from my booked Superior Room window.

(top) Token hotel gym bag; (bottom) View from my booked Superior Room
With a couple of the country's large television networks holding base in the same district, the location of the hotel is easily a spot for celebrity-sightings. This is why its recent grand opening that I was invited to was a fabulous gathering of veteran and newbie personalities from the entertainment, fashion, and hospitality industries. For a night, the lobby transformed into a lavish party of movers and shakers in the business. The next day, I was fortunate to witness a bridal photography shoot at the same space.

After my staycation at B Hotel, I can attest to its fresh relevance in Quezon City. It's definitely more than just style and gloss. Like how other ordinary guests perceive the place, it's a hotel that one can come home to in a district where most people are stars.

B Hotel Quezon City

Official website of B Hotel Quezon City

Address: 14 Scout Rallos St., Diliman, 1103 Quezon City, Philippines
Phone: +63 2 990 5000

More Photos Below:


  1. Waaaah! Diko type ang bathroom.. walang sense of privacy! lol! Nonetheless, the hotel's overall design looks really inviting, especially the pool. :)

    1. LOL semi-effort lang on pulling down the cord of the blind for privacy. works best revealed for solo travelers like me though ha-ha!


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