One of my favorite resorts this year is surprisingly just 2.5 hours drive from Manila. When I came to Anilao last year and rediscovered the famed diver's paradise, we drove past a resort with lots of cars parked on its street. I turned to look for the sign that Azure. It was also pleasant to see that Azure was by Vivire, a pioneer hotel in the Alabang business district.
I had high expectations of the resort especially after doing some research. Vivere Azure is the only luxury boutique resort in Anilao, which actually has a wealth of fabulous resorts. I had tried to book here 3 times before, but the resort was always full when I did. So, when the chance came, I gladly took off to Anilao once again, even though I just got back from Manila from here.
So, for the second day, I went back to Anilao and checked in Vivere. The resort was smaller than I expected it to be. As you leave the reception lobby, you will surely be captivated by the crown jewel of the resort, its gorgeous infinity pool. Decked with two cabanas and wicker loungers, it was the perfect spot for relaxation.
We were so lucky that we were so far the only guests in the resort. And to think it was the beginning of a long weekend. We were led to our room, which was a challenging descent of around a hundred steps.
As we went down, we passed by a restaurant that had spectacular views of the sea. It reminded me so much of Rima in Shangri-La Boracay. We actually ate all of our meals here. There was also a game room on the second floor.
The main dining area was near our room, and closer to the beach. This was where we had our breakfast. It was also a nice spot to watch the sunset when you want to be closer to the water.
At this time, I was already satisfied with the ambience of the resort. I loved the fact that it had so many common spaces, which made it look very 5-star. We approached our room which was called Escape.
It was a bit ironic that the room that we had was small though. This was perhaps my only negative comment on the resort. And to think we didn't get the lowest room class. Azure has only 13 rooms, each with a different design.
Vivere charges per person and the rate is all inclusive, which means full board meals and use of all amenities. Our room cost P7,800 per person per night. For a room this size, that price is definitely high. I took a peek at the room beside us, which was so much more spacious. The biggest and most expensive room is called the Azure. Again, each room is different, so tell the resort what you look for in a room so you can get what suits you.
We all know the shoreline of Anilao is not sandy, but this beach had nice patches of sand. And the rocks added more drama and uniqueness to it. This made the beach more charming, that sand quality didn't matter anymore. And it was nice playing with the rocks.
After settling in our room, we toiled the steps up to the pool area where we spent the rest of the afternoon. We were still the only guests at the resort, so we decided to play some music from my Big Jambox speaker.
We also ordered some drinks from Coco Bar, which was also a nice spot in the resort. It offered a good view of the pool and the sea. The staff has been so very attentive yet unobtrusive. They gave us fresh towels and even served some free drinks while we were in the cabana.
Finally, the most magical hour came, and as I have been telling everyone, Anilao is in my top 5 best sunsets in the Philippines. It was my third Anilao sunset that day, and it never failed to amaze.
My experience in Vivere Anilao was perfect. Even the room's tiny size was dispelled when I was able to sleep well. The room turned out to be really cozy, making it a true escape. Though the rates may seem steep, remember that it is all-inclusive. Vivere Anilao is definitely one of the best luxury boutique resorts in the country - and I will definitely be a regular guest.
Anilao, Mabini, Batnagas
+63 2 771 7777 (Alabang sales office)
Over-all Experience: 3
IE Score: 3.16 (Good)