Hippocampus Beach Resort: Where Magellan Allegedly Had A Stop-Over in Malapascua
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After eating lunch at Guanna’s Place, I made it to Hippocampus Beach Resort (hotel info) despite of the staggering heat. If you’re not really into Greek Mythology, you’ll actually picture out a school for hippopotamuses (Hippo Campus). Kidding! It actually looks like a mythical seahorse.
Signs by the beachfront
Hippocampus Beach Resort Review
Hippocampus Beach and Dive Resort in Malapascua Island
Anyway, Hippocampus Beach Resort is a beachfront dive resort located in Malapascua’s bounty beach. They have been rated 5.3/6.0 stars by Holiday Check last May. I always pass by here everyday. My first impression was that by day, it just blends in with the other resorts but come nightfall, you’ll never expect its hip transformation.
Cafe with sail-like contraption for shade
The resort’s Magellan’s Bar and Restaurant becomes a favorite hangout by locals and tourists alike. In comparison, you’ll notice a different vibe from its neighbors, Legend and Ocean Vida. Armed with Mediterranean galleon-inspired designs paired with Asian artistry, you’ll be transported back in time when Magellan first came to Cebu.
This painting reminds me of Queen Juana of Cebu
Notice the flags incorporated in their bar’s boat-like design
Even birds are enjoying their stay here
You’ll see the fusion of Western and Eastern cultures as reflected in their bar, restaurant and room accommodations. They do accept walk-in guests during off months as they mainly cater to dive enthusiasts with the help of their dive shop partner, French Kiss Divers.
Cool Dive Resort Wall Art
Indeed, I’m buying their company shirt
Rooms at Hippocampus Beach Resort
I was very lucky to have stayed in one of their four beachfront rooms. It has its own veranda with a picturesque view of the aquamarine sea.
Beachfront room on the 2nd level
Check for Available Rooms and Rates at Hippocampus Beach Resort
Inside, the room had two queen sized beds, an airconditioning unit, a hot and cold shower, a minibar, a fridge, a closet, a safe, wifi access and a clothes hanger which looked a lot like Bruce Lee’s wooden sparring dummy.
View from the balcony
Although, the red-orange color palette they use in their drapes and pillows were not my favorite since they have a warm effect. I somehow felt like i was in an oven, especially now that it’s summer. Good thing their airconditioning unit was functioning perfectly. After Michael, the manager, showed me to my room, I had a quick nap then went to the restaurant to discuss further my hotel review proposal.
View from my beachfront room
Beach Front of Hippocampus Beach Resort
Chillin under the shade by the beachfront
On my way to the bar, Nicco, a friend from highschool, was already sitting by the cafe with his girlfriend, Clarisse. Apparently, they were staying in the same resort as me. What a coincidence! We had a quick chat then decided to grab a few drinks later. Then Michael introduced me to Cristina, Hippocampus Beach Resort’s co-owner.
We can sip coffee here all day
She shared with me a bit of the resort’s history, their struggles during Yolanda and also of her vision and future plans with the place. With the proposal laid out, I decided to call it a day and headed back to my room to prepare for dinner and a night of partying.
The complimentary Filipino breakfast
Breakfast with friends
My friends and I had the Filipino breakfast the next day, which started at 7AM. Then I had a quick chat with their kitchen crew and their staff, who were very friendly and accommodating. Their receptionist even went out of her way to give me a personal tour of their facilities.
The friendly staff in Filipiniana attire
Overall, Hippocampus Beach Resort (dicounted rates) is a family-friendly resort and its location is also very strategic since it is near cheap bbq stalls, eateries and sari-sari stores. Since it is by the beachfront, all other fun activities are very accessible.
Their various offerings for everyone
You can reach Hippocampus Beach Resort (check rates) from Mactan Cebu International Airport in 3-4 hours. If you are traveling as a group, you can arrange for a private transfer from the airport directly to the Malapascua through www.hippocampus-online.com.
From a different vantage point
By the way, they accept major credit cards and better have an early reservation as it is always fully-booked especially during March to May. So stop the online search for travel destinations and start packing. Happy Summer!
Map of Hippocampus Beach resort and Malapascua Island dive sites