The first time we visited Bacolod City, we stayed at a hotel called Bascon Hotel. It was an old hotel, with dark wood panels, dark carpet, and a dark hallway. The “lobby” consisted of one wooden bench and a long horizontal wall mirror and was sparsely decorated. Our room, like the hallway, was dark and “well-curtained,” the bathroom tiles may have been witnessed to many a crime or passion.
This time, we booked a quadruple room with The White Hotel, a heritage house turned boutique hotel along P. Burgos St. What enticed me to book with this hotel was not just the fact that it was a heritage house but also because of its location. P. Burgos runs parallel to Lacson St., the major street in Bacolod City, and from P. Burgos we can walk to basically all the places we want to go like The Negros Museum or the provincial capitol or Manokan County. The hotel was formerly a museum but, basing on photos of the then museum, I think it best serves as a hotel. After all, the Ramos-Dizon family, who owns the house, welcomed many guests into their home.
The White Hotel, built in the 1950s, was the home of Hermelinda Ramos and Raymundo Dizon and their family. According to a book of the family, Mr. Dizon was from Porac Pampanga who went to Bacolod as a bank manager. Hermelinda was the daughter of an affluent Negrense family and lived at the much larger white mansion beside the house-turned-hotel. To me, the Ramos-Dizon house was a humble building in comparison to the neighboring Ramos mansion but the Ramos-Dizon family was an influential family and, according to the book, which was written by a distant relative, the family was a family of good standing in the Bacolod community (one became mayor, another became president of De La Salle University). Decorations inside the hotel are not cluttered but the affluence of the family remains in the well-made furniture that I think were truly reminiscent of the era they were made. Add to that the art works that hang around the hotel.
The hotel has very few rooms. In fact, when we booked a room a week before we were scheduled to arrive, they only had two rooms available for the days we will be there. We even had to cut our trip from four days to three days because they do not have a room available on our supposed first day. The scarcity of rooms was also because it was MassKara season. If you are planning to stay at The White Hotel in October, make sure to book ahead, best in September, because rooms will be scarce and the hotel increases its room rates one week before the MassKara festival, which is held on the fourth Sunday of October.
Room rates are very affordable:
|Type of Room||With Breakfast||W/O Breakfast|
|Double w/ Shared Bath||P1,100||P1,000|
CONS: I actually loved this hotel. It could get scary especially at the second floor when the common area is huge and empty. We stayed at the ground floor though and the front desk and security guard were always there. The common area was also well lighted. The ground floor was low-ceilinged compared to the second floor, so if you are tall, you may want to reconsider. The beds were small and narrow. It could barely fit me and Joel and we are small people. They were comfortable beds though and I slept soundly the two nights we were there. The water pressure was also something I can complain of but I did not let it rain on my parade. We instead used a kabo to hasten our bathing time, old-school style.
PROS: The front desk were easy to talk with and helpful. They have a stand-by tour van driver that you can hire for the day, given you are able to book him first. Making a reservation was also easy. You just have to deposit half of your total charge to their RCBC account, send them a copy of your deposit slip, and a room is reserved for you. I also suggest you eat their breakfast (P150.00 per plate if not booked together with room) because most restaurants/coffee shops open at 9AM. The White Hotel’s tapa and tocino breakfast meals are good. They only serve instant coffee though.
HOW TO GET AROUND: The White Hotel is walking distance to The Negros Museum, the provincial capitol, and SM Bacolod. It is also just one jeepney ride to Robinsons’ Bacolod. Tricycle to the Ceres South Bus Terminal can cost P100, while taxi to the same destination costs only P80. To get you to the Bacolod-Silay International Airport, ask the hotel’s front desk to book you a seat at one of the many airport shuttles in the city and the shuttle will fetch you at the hotel. The airport shuttle costs P150 per person.
#42 Burgos Avenue, Bacolod City
Tel: (034) 705-8869