First impression. Located on a hillside between Diniwid Beach and White Beach, on the quieter northern end of Boracay island, Diniview Villa Resort is farther away from the main hub of Boracay than I expected. The road leading to it is steep and its curves almost intimidating. But soon as I get to the reception where fresh calamansi juice and cold towels were served, the stress from the three-hour journey from airport to island quickly faded away. The place is surrounded by lush greenery, with a panoramic ocean. I knew I was in for a relaxing stay.
Check- in. Bright and breezy — like pretty much everything else at the resort. The staff enthusiastically led me to my assigned villa within minutes of arriving.
Room. The resort has seven villas varying in size from 88sqm to 200sqm. Each villa has its own veranda, and is separated by generous lawns with tall plants fencing out the rest of the world. I stayed in the sun villa, a 136-sqm villa near the entrance of the property, overlooking the Diniwid cove. The entrance leads to the first level of the villa, which houses a living area, a toilet that opens out to a garden, a six-seater dining area, a wrap-around sun deck with a bar, two lounge chairs and a hammock, and a fully-equipped kitchen. The decor is tropical chic, with bright red hibiscus flowers accentuating the villa’s predominantly white-and-wood color scheme. Of course, the villa’s true centerpiece is the view, which can be experienced in full glory from the sundeck. The sight is something to behold no matter what the time of day: in the morning, it’s the deep green hillside and the sun-dappled waves; in late afternoon, a perfect orange sunset; at night glints of gold and silver from the stars in the sky and the lights of the neighboring resorts.
On the lower level, there are two bedrooms and a shower. The bedrooms manage to be cozy and inviting even while being very basic. One bedroom has a queen-size bed, while the other has three twin beds. Glass sliding doors in each room open out to a pocket garden, with the same great view as the sun deck above.
Cable TV is also available in both rooms, and WiFi throughout the house, though the signal gets a bit weaker on the lower floor.
Food. While the resort has yet to open an in-house restaurant, a lot of good places to eat are nearby. Wahine Grill & Bar on Diniwid beach serves good seafood barbecue and fresh fruit cocktails. Mama’s Fish House offers a mean seafood paella. Spider House has good sushi. The resort also offers a grocery service for P200 (about US$4) or 10% of the total cost of the items, whichever is higher, plus transportation fee, so you can buy your ingredients fresh and make your meals just the way you like them. Complimentary items such as a fruit basket, milk, eggs, jam, and bread from Lemoni Café are also available.
Activities. If you manage to tear yourself away from the sun deck and its view, the resort has a pool where you can go for a dip and enjoy the same breathtaking sight of the sea. Even better, the island’s Diniwid Beach is only a five- to ten-minute walk away. The sand on this small cove may not be as fine as the one on white Beach, but the relaxed vibe more than makes up for it, and the waters are just as clear. The resort can also arrange for activities such as paraw (a local sail boat with two outriggers and two sails) sailing, diving, in-house massages, or private yoga sessions to help you stay in your relaxed state.
Service. The staff were helpful and friendly, and spoke with me in a tone that’s less formal and more conversational, which really made me feel at home.
I like. The bright cheery villa. The red flowers in every corner, the greenery, open space, the quiet. The fact that the beach is only a short walk away. Most of all, the view. I could have lain in the hammock the entire day just enjoying the view.
Not so keen. It’s quite far from the White Beach action. Getting downtown would cost you P100 one way on a tricycle from Diniwid Road to Boat station 1, or P250 if you arrange for pick up from the resort’s main reception, but the seclusion is actually what you go to Diniview for.
Verdict. Highly recommended for families and groups who want to experience Boracay’s famous beaches but avoid the crowds.
Room rates are about P10,000 to P14,000 a night.
For inquiries and reservations call tel +63917 799 2029, visit Diniview Villas’ website.
Originally published in InFlight Traveller December to January 2015. Updated April 2016