Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Davao City Series: Courtview Inn

Courtview Inn is a relatively new (built in July 2012) two-star hotel in Davao City.

thin Santa Claus at the lobby of Courtview Inn


First Impressions


I found out about Court View Inn through Agoda. It got into my shortlist because it fitted our budget and because its retrofuturistic-looking lobby appealed to me (yeah, priorities).

We wanted a mini fridge inside the room. It was not a dealbreaker but it would be nice. The Agoda listing of Courtview Hotel did not mention a refrigerator and only had pictures of the bed. The Courtview Inn indicated that airport transfer was a paid service but did not say how much. I wanted to send an SMS to the hotel to get a quick reply but only the landline number was listed on the Web site. At this day and age, when everything is instant, and especially here in the Philippines where most people text instead of call, I find the lack of a cellphone number a bit of a turn off.

I filled up the Contact Us form on Courtview Inn's Web site to ask about the refrigerator and airport transfer then I hit the 'Submit' button. Voila! ERROR. So I sent an email instead. The hotel owns the courtviewinn.com domain but for some reason, they use the less-professional looking email address courtviewinn@gmail.com.

I got a reply two days after. I think two days is too long for a hotel to reply to an inquiry. Not everyone can be won over by a retrofuturistic lobby, you know.

The wording of the reply I got was slightly wonky, but I took it to mean that, yes, there would be a ref in the family room. The airport transfer rate sounded a little steep, so we opted not to avail of it.

reply from Courtview Inn

We booked the family room through Agoda and got a pretty good deal. The listed rate for the room in Courtview Inn's Web site for our two-night stay was P3200/night but I chanced upon a heavily discounted rate in Agoda plus an additional 8% discount thanks to a BPI credit card promo: I paid only P3590 (taxes included) for our two-night stay.

Since Agoda is a third party, we were hoping to get a booking confirmation direct from Courtview Inn, just for peace of mind. Alas, there was none. I even emailed Courtview but I got no reply.


The Hotel Building


Courtview Hotel is about 20-30 minutes from the Francisco Bangoy International Airport (aka Davao International Airport). The hotel is along a major road (Quimpo Blvd).

At the ground floor are several affordable restaurants and an ice cream parlor. The lobby is on the building's upper floor but there were usually hotel personnel near the building's entrance to help with our bags or answer questions.

Courtview Inn Hotel
Courtview Inn building
Courtview Inn hotel

Fortunately, our booking was without problems. Checking in did not take long. The person manning the counter was not particularly warm: no eye contact, no smile, no friendly greeting. He did his job so I could not really complain, but a little more warmth and friendliness would have been nice.

retrofuturistic lobby of Courtview Inn
lobby of Courtview Inn

The Family Room


The family room we had was spacious and clean. The two double beds were comfortable. There was a simple cabinet and a few hangers available. No refrigerator.

double beds at the Family Room of Courtview Inn
cabinet at the Family Room of Courtview Inn

At one corner of the room was a small round table and two chairs. This corner also held a dressing mirror and had warm lighting that made things look more flattering.

dressing mirror, table, and chairs at the Family Room of Courtview Inn

The flat-screen TV had cable and was at a comfortable distance and angle from the beds. The lights and the appliances could be shut down all at the same time by removing an electronic card near the door. When going out, we had to surrender the electronic lock at the lobby then just get it again upon our arrival.

One thing I did not like about the family room was that there were only two electrical outlets available. I mean, come on! A room for four adult tourists, and only two outlets? Nowadays, tourists typically carry 2-3 electronic gadgets each.

There was supposed to be free wi-fi available but we could not connect (authorization failed). We tried with two gadgets, but still no luck.


The Bathroom and Hygiene Supplies


Our group of four got 4 soap discs, 4 shampoo+conditioner sachets, and 3 towels. We had to request for the 4th towel but it was delivered to our room quickly. The staff forgot to put a roll of toilet paper during the first day (I only noticed late at night and did not bother asking for one) but when we came back after our trip the following day, there was already toilet paper. We did not get any additional soaps and shampoos but the soaps and shampoos were big enough for two overnight stays, even for me (with my long hair). However, there were no slippers available even for bathroom use; when we asked for a pair, we were told that the slippers were out of stock.

complimentary hotel soaps and shampoo at Courtview Inn

The bathroom was small. It was not spotless but was clean enough (only minor flaws such as paint specks on the door, watermarks on the shower head, and a faint residue of melted soap on the sink). The toilet seat did not fit the bowl well and the bowl cover would constantly drop down on my back while I was seating on the throne. There was also a bidet but the water pressure was really strong. I tried using it while in the shower and I found the pressure painful. The shower had hot water although the water took quite some time to heat up. One other annoyance was the drain right smack at the area where you would stand while bathing. That spot was slightly depressed and you could feel it right under your feet while you shower. There was also a high shelf over the sink, not friendly for kids and height-challenged folks like me but the curtain rod was a safe enough place to sling over clothes even if the shower was turned on.

bathroom and toilet at the Family Room of Courtview Inn
sink area of the bathroom at the Family Room of Courtview Inn


The Complimentary Breakfast


I read in an earlier review that Courtview Inn's complimentary breakfast was very basic (bread, butter, and coffee) and the serving was small. With that review in mind, plus the good discount I got via Agoda, I was expecting that we would have to buy additional breakfast items. It was a nice surprise to learn that the free breakfast included in our booking was quite good and filling. There were four sets of coffee and corned beef (or meat loaf) with rice and egg sent to our room. The food arrived quickly and was covered in plastic.

free breakfast at the Family Room of Courtview Inn


Leaving Courtview Inn

Checking out was a breeze. We were charged a P70 service fee though. Not sure what it was for, maybe for supplies or room service. Hailing a cab to go to the airport from Courtview Inn was easy.


To summarize, here are the pros and cons of Courtview Inn and the Family Room in particular:

pros
  • affordable rooms
  • clean and spacious family room
  • comfortable beds
  • good and filling complimentary breakfast
  • affordable restaurants on the ground floor
  • fast room service
  • fast check-in and check-out
  • easy to hail a cab from the hotel

cons
  • email staff slow to reply / does not reply to inquiries
  • lobby staff not very warm
  • paid airport transfer
  • no mini ref
  • it takes a while for the shower to heat up
  • wi-fi may or may not be available
  • incomplete/missing items (e.g. towels, slippers, toilet paper)
  • two electrical outlets only



Courtview Inn

Quimpo Boulevard
Davao City, Philippines
Tel No. (082)295-7537
Web site
Facebook page

 

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