Where to Stay in Sagada: Misty Lodge and Cafe

Related Posts:

Sagada: DIY Itinerary and Expenses

A Review of Coda Lines and PinoyTravel

Where to Eat in Sagada

Misty Lodge and Cafe was our homebase while in Sagada. Boyfriend and I were very happy with our decision to stay at Misty because the place was warm and cozy. The people were very accommodating and the overall ambience urged us to just relax and enjoy our stay. It was an ideal vacation house for us. ❤

Misty is a 15-minute walk from Sagada town proper. At first, boyfriend was complaining about how far it was from the establishments, but we got used to the distance eventually. I really didn’t mind the walk because the weather was cool and it felt good to walk with trees in every direction. We just made sure not to stay out late because there weren’t street lamps in some areas along our path.

Misty Lodge and Cafe

Misty Lodge and Cafe

Booking Process:

I made initial inquiries through the mobile number posted on their Facebook page. They replied consistently within a few hours after my messages. And even though I had a lot of questions about the lodge and about Sagada in general, they always had answers for me. I reserved 2 months before our trip and they required a 50% downpayment to confirm my booking.

At first, I wanted to reserve their room for 2 (with shared bathrooms) at Php 700 per night. But I found out that they had a cottage room that was separate from the main house which had its own bathroom. It was Php 1,500 per night for 2 people. It was still within our budget so we booked this instead. The cottage room rates may vary according to how many people will be staying. It can accommodate a maximum of 6 people.

View from the cottage room window <3

View from the cottage room window ❤

The night before our check-in date, they asked if we were already on our way and what time we would be arriving. I loved their personal approach to their guests 🙂

The Lodge:

The main house felt welcoming and very cozy. The house was constructed with wood for the most part so it really felt like a vacation house for me.

All wood <3

All wood ❤

I was thinking of borrowing a book from their library to read on my spare time, but I slept instead. LOL

I was thinking of borrowing a book from their library to read on my spare time, but I slept instead. LOL

We explored the house when we arrived and every nook was a perfect place to just sit back and relax.

Lounge area on the top floor

Lounge area on the top floor

Another library on the 2nd floor

Another library on the 2nd floor

The Cafe:

There are many must-try restaurants in Sagada but in our opinion, the food in Misty was the best we’ve tried. They serve a variety of food like pizza, burgers and steak!

Misty Cafe and Lodge menu

Misty Cafe and Lodge menu

One regret that we have is we only ate breakfast at Misty and ate out for lunch and dinner. We only ate dinner there during our last night and realized that the food was VERY good. Their breakfast was very good too but we don’t really judge based on breakfasts. LOL.

Misty's home cured beef sirloin a.k.a tapa. Delish! We also ordered bacon and Spam on different days but we forgot to take a photo.

Misty’s home cured beef sirloin a.k.a tapa. Delish! We also ordered bacon and Spam on different days but we forgot to take a photo.

Angus Minute Steak. The lighting during dinner was not good and I don't know much about photography to manipulate the colors. This was very tender! Boyfriend paired a beer with this. <3

Angus Minute Steak. The lighting during dinner was not good and I don’t know much about photography to manipulate the colors. This was very tender! Boyfriend paired a beer with this. ❤

Quattro Formaggi. Yummy! <3

Quattro Formaggi. Yummy! ❤

The cafe isn’t as jam packed during meal hours maybe because its location is a slight distance away from the town but a trip here would be worthwhile.

Fireplace at the cafe. They light this up at during dinner and breakfast at the guests' request.

Fireplace at the cafe. They light this up at during dinner and breakfast at the guests’ request. The owners love owls 🙂

Our Room:

The cottage room was very spacious for boyfriend and I. We enjoyed the view from our windows, the quiet, the privacy and our own bathroom.

Love the natural light in our room <3

Love the natural light in our room ❤

Shelves for the TV, our stuff and for food!

Shelves for the TV, our stuff and for food!

The room had 2 beds, shelves where we put our stuff, a TV and an electric fan (which we didn’t use).

Inside the cottage room

Inside the cottage room

There is a bonfire pit just outside the cottage room which we wanted to use during our last night, but it rained to our disappointment 😦 Other guests can also use the bonfire pit. They just have to ask permission from the guests staying in the cottage and minimize noise.

Overall Thoughts:

We love Misty! The cottage room is a  bit more expensive than other accommodations in Sagada but it was well worth it. Their food is delicious too! The boyfriend and I are thinking of going back to Sagada, and just sleep and eat in Misty for our whole stay – no more spelunking for us. LOL.

Cottage room with the bonfire area in front.

Cottage room with the bonfire area in front.

If you are planning a trip to Sagada, I highly recommend staying at or dining in Misty. 🙂

Advertisements

Where to Stay in Hongdae, Seoul

South Korea Series:

How to Apply for a Korean Visa for Filipino Employees

8-Day South Korea Budget and Itinerary (Seoul + Jeju)

Exploring Seoul

Adventures in Jeju

What I Ate in South Korea

While planning for our South Korea itinerary, I spent the most time on finding our accommodations in Seoul. The sheer number of choices made my head spin. But as always, I relied on Agoda and TripAdvisor to help me out once we decided that we wanted to stay in Hongdae area.

Why Hongdae Area?

The Hongdae area is known for its trendy and youthful ambience due to its proximity to Hongik University. It houses a collection of unique cafes, fashion shops, clubs, art markets, street arts and all things that would call out to an artistic spirit. And we found this to be true. Every shop and cafe had its own unique theme, there were street arts left and right, and we found that there is an ongoing street performance every night we came home.

It is near the train station and we also didn’t have to walk far to look for wide array of food. We also planned to pub crawl but we were always tired upon returning home. Add to that the sudden drop of temperature at night. We always opted to go home and hibernate. Lol.

We stayed in 3 different guesthouses in Hongdae because we wanted to experience a variety of hostels while there. However, it was a little inconvenient to repeatedly pack our bags and lug them to the next guesthouse. It was the only con in this little adventure of ours.

Dream Comfort Guesthouse

To be honest, I was firstly attracted to the cute owl in their homepage. The positive reviews around the internet convinced me to book our first night in Seoul with them. Dream Comfort Guesthouse is located about 2 minutes away from Exit 2 of Hongik University subway station. They are located on their other side of Hongdae which means its quieter in that area. Nevertheless, there are several convenience stores, cafes and restaurants near the guesthouse so we didn’t have to walk far to look for food.

Dream Comfort's owl which I saw in almost every photo in their gallery

Dream Comfort’s owl which I saw in almost every photo in their gallery

The room assigned to us had a double bed, a bunk bed and a super comfy sofa where I chose to sleep that night.

Bunk bed where Jayvee and Karla's things slept

Bunk bed where Jayvee and Karla’s things slept

Jella and Karla's bed

Jella and Karla’s bed

The super comfy sofa I claimed as my bed as soon as I saw it

The super comfy sofa I claimed as my bed as soon as I saw it

The owner was waiting for us when we arrived and was so friendly. He showed us where to get food for breakfast and left us on our own after making sure we were settled in. He knew that we would be leaving very early the next morning for our flight to Jeju so he said his goodbye that time as well.

Kitchen

Kitchen

Dream Comfort Guesthouse was the cheapest among the 3 hostels where we stayed in Hongdae and the nearest to the subway station. I booked via Agoda when I saw that they had an ongoing promotion for our travel date which brought the rate down to 17,500 krw. 🙂

Common room

Common room

Location: Mapo-gu, Donggyo-ro 27gil 3-16, Seoul, Korea

Bunk Guesthouse

We also stayed for a night in Bunk Guesthouse and then we wished that we could have stayed a bit longer. Out of the 3, it seemed the newest and had the most cheerful ambience. It is also my favorite even if was the most expensive at 25,000 krw for a weekday stay (it’s 28,000 krw during weekends and holidays).

Reception area at Bunk Guesthouse

Reception area at Bunk Guesthouse

Patio. I imagined hanging out here but COLD.

Patio. I imagined hanging out here but COLD.

The owner, Brian, was very nice as well. To our pleasant surprise, we found out that he could understand and speak Filipino! It turns out that he stayed for a few years in the Philippines to study English. We stayed for a few minutes on the first floor so we could chat and exchange stories. It was very easy to communicate with Brian and he even helped out arrange for Jayvee and Karla’s tattoo appointments.

Kitchen

Kitchen

Dining area

Dining area

Our room was on the second floor and we had plenty of space. Each bed had a socket and individual reading light. We even had our own balcony which we never used because it was too damn cold outside.

I forgot to take a photo of our room so I lifted this off from Bunk Guesthouse's website.

I forgot to take a photo of our room so I lifted this off from Bunk Guesthouse’s website.

The only thing I didn’t like was going outside to access the toilets on the second floor. I braced myself for the cold each time I opened to door. The shower rooms were thankfully located in the inside hallway of our floor. Additionally, there was a water dispenser just outside our door which saved us a bit of money.

The guesthouse is located about 5 minutes away from Exit 8 or Exit 7 of the subway station.

Location: 19-1, Wausan-ro 29ra-gil, Mapo-gu, Seoul, Korea

Urban Breaktime Guesthouse

After our night in Bunk Guesthouse, we transferred next door to Urban Breaktime Guesthouse. We stayed at their 6-Dormitory room for 3 nights. UBT’s dorm set-up is unique because the beds look more like capsule beds than bunk beds. Every one of us felt more privacy because of this even though there were 2 other guests bunking with us.

Entrance to Urban Breaktime Guesthouse

Entrance to Urban Breaktime Guesthouse

We had a pleasant stay at the guesthouse, though I would have liked to interact with the owners more. When we checked-in, we used the phone attached to the front door and they gave us the passcode to enter the guesthouse. It was the same process when we checked out.

A bed at the 6-dorm room costs 22,000 krw on weekdays and 25,000 krw on weekends and holidays. They have a peak season rate of 30,000 krw. Each bed had a curtains to give occupants privacy, an electric outlet and nightlight (but mine had none).

My bed at Urban Breaktime Guesthouse

My bed at Urban Breaktime Guesthouse

Space-wise, our dorm room at UBT was the smallest. We had to haul our luggage outside to the dining area when we were packing our stuff.

Our room didn't have a lot of floor space. The steps leading to the upper bunk beds and spaces between beds were made into storage spaces

Our room didn’t have a lot of floor space. The steps leading to the upper bunk beds and spaces between beds were made into storage spaces

I loved that our room was right next to the kitchen. The fridge was stocked with food for guests and we helped ourselves every morning for breakfast.

UBT's kitchen

UBT’s kitchen

Dining area

Dining area

Location: 21-1, Wausan-ro 29ra-gil, Mapo-gu, Seoul, South Korea

Summary:

I enjoyed our stay in all these guesthouses. They had almost the same facilities at different price points. But if I had to choose my favorite, it would be Bunk Guesthouse. We felt most comfortable there and the atmosphere was so fun and welcoming due to the guests and staff members. When I go back to Seoul, I think I’ll stay there again. 🙂

My favorite space at Bunk Guesthouse

My favorite space at Bunk Guesthouse

However, I think that no matter where you stay in Hongdae, it would still be walking distance to the subway station, restaurants, cafes, shops and bars. And have more or less the same amenities. It’s just a matter of finding the hotel or guesthouse which suits each traveler’s personality.

My First AirBnB Experience

A couple of weeks ago, my cousin from Pangasinan asked me to find an accommodation for 13 people somewhere in Makati or Pasay. She and the rest of the family will be visiting other relatives in Metro Manila and they needed to find a place to stay for 1 night. She asked me to find a budget hotel that would be nice enough “para hindi nakakahiya sa mga balikbayan” And if possible a unit equipped with a kitchen so they can cook meals. The budget for the accommodation of 13 people was Php 9,000. All this she told me less than 1 week before their trip.

So I searched for hotels and asked for friends if they have any recommendations. The budget they gave me could only book 3-4 rooms in a good budget hotel, not enough for 13 people to sleep comfortably.

I have known about AirBnb for a long time already but I haven’t used their services. It was already 2 days before my cousin’s trip and I browsed the site as a last resort. In case you haven’t heard about AirBnB, it’s a site where people can rent out or search lodging. It has become an alternative to booking hotels for travelers who want a more homey feel to their accommodations.

Searching for a place:

I downloaded the AirBnB app on my phone and searched for listings that could accommodate 13 people. I loved that AirBnB has filters I could use to narrow down my search. There are filters for the price range, number of guests, amenities and listing type. I made sure to check the guest reviews and host profiles of the lodgings that interested me to make sure the listing was accurate and legit.

Filters to make searching easier :)

Filters to make searching easier 🙂

Pretty soon I was able to narrow down my search to 3 possible accommodations and I just let my cousins choose the one they liked.

We settle in a 4-bedroom penthouse located in Makati. It had complete amenities and it was located a short walking distance away from Greenbelt and Glorietta malls. I sent an inquiry regarding the number of guests and the hosts replied in a few hours. They sounded very accommodating and organized that I decided to finalize our booking.

The profile page of the host contains their contact details and reviews by previous guests

The profile page of the host contains their contact details and reviews by previous guests

Confirming our reservation:

When I sent my inquiry, the hosts also pre-approved my booking request. All that was left to do was pay for the reservation cost of the unit plus AirBnB service fee. I paid via credit card and I was a little surprised that the actual payment was in US dollars. (Can anyone tell me if this is the usual process or if I should change something in the settings?) The cost of the unit converted in Philippine peso was around 8,600. Well within the budget set by my cousin.

Reservation + AirBnB service fee

Reservation + AirBnB service fee

After confirming my reservation, I exchanged messages with the hosts regarding our arrival time. They also sent me a guidebook containing directions to the penthouse and the house rules.

Our penthouse for the night:

Or as my 10-year old nephew called it, our very own presidential suite 🙂 The place didn’t disappoint. The pictures on the listing were very accurate and amenities like extra pillows and blankets, water, soap and shampoo were provided for. Of course amenities differ for each AirBnB listing so it’s best to check the detailed information about the place. In my case, I really didn’t nitpick on the small details as long as all 13 of us could sleep comfortably, there was a kitchen and there was a hot shower.

Living room with a sofa-bed

Living room with a sofa-bed

Continue reading