I’ve seen photos of Albay’s perfect-coned Mayon Volcano from the window of a certain hilltop hotel in Legazpi City. The beautiful but deadly mountain exposed in almost its full glory except for wisps of rare lenticular clouds circling near its crater. I was expecting all that and more as we checked in for our second night in Bicol at the grandest hotel in the city, The Oriental Hotel.
Legazpi City sparkled under the darkness of early evening as we dropped our bags and lay our weary selves on The Oriental Hotel’s soft beds. After a few minutes of rest, I quickly got up and checked the view from our balcony. We were directly above the hotel’s pool area and just beyond that, the rest of the city lay in electric luminance.
It was a lovely evening and Mayon would’ve easily been seen from my vantage if not for the starless sky; rainclouds blanketed the night.
I shrugged it off after taking a few photos. There’s still tomorrow I muttered to myself as I went back in, opened my laptop and tried to work (hoorah for free wi-fi at last!). But pretending to work is quite hard, so I did the next best and laid down for the night. Man, The Oriental’s beds are really soft!
And tomorrow came. And the sun didn’t shine.
Last night’s heavy blanket of clouds stayed on even as light filtered through the horizon. The only consolation was that Mayon Volcano was in full view, dwarfing Lignon Hill on its front. There were no beautiful show of light, there were no lenticular clouds; but the view was still magnificent. Mayon by itself is already astoundingly beautiful.
My stomach rumbled and I instantaneously forgot about the volcano and all the poetry that goes along with it.
I saw some packed pili nuts along with a few Oreos over the room’s fridge and tried very hard to ignore them. The garlic pili nuts were all but screaming for my attention, they were just too expensive!
Avoiding temptation; I quickly dressed, bagged my cameras and went down The Oriental’s posh restaurant for breakfast. Cross that, buffet breakfast. These of course came as a complimentary for our night’s stay; problem was, I forgot our room number! Good thing one of the staff was kind enough to check it for me through their guest list. Good service!
There were crispy bacons, fried chickens, corned beefs, sausages and eggs. There were breads, jams, cheeses, butter and fruits. All the normal breakfast fares were present but the Bicolano dishes were missing. We are in Bicol, right?
But this got me thinking. What do our brethrens from Bicol really eat for breakfast? Do they also have gata on their morning meals?
Two full plates of normal breakfast fare, two glasses of orange juice and a cup of coffee were wiped and I was still drawing a big blank to the question that was running through my head. Oh well, I’ll ask my Bicolano uncle when I get back home.
I knew there wasn’t enough time even for a quick dip at The Oriental’s infinity pool but I went ahead just to check the view from lounge chairs fronting the water. I bet it would’ve been really nice to dive and swim with Mayon as my background but then again; there just wasn’t time for it anymore.
We arrived at seven the previous evening and departed at nine the next morning. We weren’t even able to spend a whole day at the Oriental; but it was a good night’s stay nonetheless. Gorgeous room, excellent service, superb food and exceptional view of Mayon and Legazpi City. More than enough I’d say.
The Oriental Hotel
Address: Taysan Hill, Sto. Niño Village, Legazpi City
Contact Number: (052) 435-3333 | (052) 435-5555
(02) 404-7501 | (0905) 552-3270
Room Rates: Click Here
GPS Coordinates: +13° 8' 3.82", +123° 44' 19.17"
View Location on Google Maps: Click Here