Island Cove Resort and Leisure Park
Island Cove, at Cavité, just south of Manila is an ideal place to escape the bustle of city life. You can go for the weekend and stay at the resort hotel or make it a day trip and just relax in the Leisure Park. We choose the second option. Island Cove has been known to be the pioneer in the tourism industry with respect to the introduction of a multitude of attractions that lure both local and foreign visitors. Island Cove Hotel and Leisure Park is an ISO 9001:2008 certified and an “AAA” accredited resort by the Department of Tourism. Located in the historic town of Kawit, Cavite, this 36-hectare Mediterranean inspired island is only 45 minutes away from Manila.
A zero-emission Electric Tram is used to transport vacationers from one point of the 36-hectare land to another. The existing facilities available to its guests are the Oceania Water Park, the Animal Island, the Island Songs KTV, the Adventure Activity Zone, the Fishing Village, and the Island Spa. Island Cove’s other well-loved trademarks include the outdoor giant chess set, the play ground, and Concert Park, just to name a few.
If you are after the roller coasters and the rides, then this is not the place. It is neither a fun fare nor a theme park, rather it is a place to relax and unwind. Island Cove offers a fist class lido and pool area with water slides and a special pool for the children set in garden surrounds. There are tennis and volleyball courts as well as a jogging track and an outdoor (king-size) chess board for those who tend towards more cerebral pursuits.
For the children, there is a small (miniscule) zoo. Although the animals appear to be well cared for, animal lovers would most likely be upset at the conditions in which some of the animals are kept. There are a number of primates in small prison cages, some alone and without any kind of climbing or other equipment to provide stimulus – other than small children taunting them. Some of these animals appear traumatized - not unexpectedly, given their conditions. But that is about the only real criticism we can make of this place. The birds and the ostriches did not appear to be complaining.
“Work is for People who Don’t Fish”. So read the Tee-shirt of one Korean angler we saw heading towards the Fishing Village. This is probably the one feature of Island Cove that is unique – a traditional fishing village built on stilts over fish ponds where anglers and their families can spend an entire day, renting a cabana, fishing, eating and listening to the minstrels who stroll about the place. Prices are reasonable and people appeared to be catching fish.
Island Cove offers a number of restaurants and eating outlets. Prices are about average for the food although drink prices appeared to be over the top. The buffet lunch priced at P350 per head is good value and the quality of food was excellent. But we were charged P140 for a mango juice and P55 for a glass filled with ice over which about half a can of Coke had been poured. We were refused the complete can. It took the edge of the meal and was unnecessary penny pinching.
The entrance fee to Island Cove is P100 per person for which you are entitled to two vouchers that give you P100 off of any food and beverages and another P100 off of entry to any of the amenities. The entry fee to the pool is P150 per head but if you use your voucher the price comes down to P50. Similarly the Fishing Village charges a minimum of P100 to fish and you can exchange your voucher. You also pay by weight for any fish you catch and you can opt to take the fish away or have it cooked for you.
We choose to eat at the main restaurant and a buffet for two plus the mango juice and the half can of Coke came to P895 less our vouchers so we paid P695. This was about right except for the unnecessary agro. It was a pleasant enough meal.
If you opt to make a weekend of it, then hotel prices start from P2500++ for a double superior room (rack rate). The hotel did not appear all that busy when we visited so presumably you can negotiate a deal.
How to get there? Island Cove is situated on Manila Bay at Binakayan town, Kawit, Cavité. If you are driving from Manila, then take Roxas Boulevard heading south and then the coastal highway into Cavité. Take a right turn at the SM Mall at Baco’or and head towards Kawit. The place is well sign posted. Alternatively public buses run from Baclaran in Paranaque. The fare on a non-air-conditioned bus is P15. The bus will drop you right at the gate. Journey time depending on traffic is around 45 minutes.
We were there on a Sunday in perfect weather. Yet, the place was not crowded at all. The car park was half empty. It left us wondering just which market Island Cove is pitching itself at. Go there before it gets crowded although we suspect it never does. Island Cove is also perfect for celebrations, corporate functions, and team building activities.
For further details:
Island Cove Hotel and Leisure Park
Binakayan, Kawit, Cavite Philippines 4104
Telephone: (+632) 810-7878, (+632) 400-4273, (+6346) 4340210
FAX : (+632) 810-3719
For corporate inquiries and reservations, please email us at isla...@yahoo.com.ph or call our sales office at (+632) 8107878.
For hotel inquiries and reservations, please email us at inqu...@islandcovephil.com or evel...@islandcovephil.com . You may also call our hotel hotline at (0917) 5517776.
Other contact numbers: 0920-625-7037, 0916-720-3339, 0917-551-7776, 0917-861-5941, 0917-861-5943, 0917-861-5946, 0917 -861-5947, 0917 -861-5948, 0917- 861-5949, 0917- 861-5954, 0917- 861-5955, 0939-325-5653, 0917-551-7776.
Official website of Island Cove Hotel and Leisure Park: http://www.islandcovephil.com/