First impression. The 150- room Seda Nuvali hotel’s beige brown mono block building is softened by the rolling terrain of green, with views of the manmade lake.
The four-star hotel is part of the Nuvali eco-city development of real estate developer Ayala Land. The eco city is a self-contained 2,300-hectare growth center in Sta. Rosa, Laguna. Within its complex are office buildings, one occupied by IBM, a call center, Solenad at Nuvali lifestyle center, bike trails, a manmade lagoon and a wakeboard facility.
There are four hotels in the eco-city, with Seda Nuvali being the high-end property, and the only one with a pool. The idea is to offer all the modern city conveniences while giving guests the resort feel and lifestyle.
Architect Conrado Onglao has tried to bring in the colors of the hotel’s surroundings with the use of earth tones, peach-hued marble floor, and posts plastered with outdoor terracotta bricks.
There’s lots of natural light, thanks to large floor to ceiling windows and glass doors. Furniture at the lobby include a woven sala set by Kenneth Cobonpue, Apple computers at the elounge for guest use, metal artworks by furniture designer Ann Pamintuan, and black and white photographs of Nuvali scene and nature details such as leaves by Paco Guerrero.
Misto restaurant on the ground floor has floor to ceiling gypsum windows and doors, allowing a 180-degree view and access to the infinity pool, screened by hedges.
Room. I am booked in a 37sqm premier room, a corner unit, which has a fantastic view of the manmade lagoon. On a clear day, I can clearly see Mt. Makiling. My king size bed with four huge pillows is comfortable and cozy. There’s a kitchenette with sink, microwave oven, and generous cupboards. Toiletries are made using biodegradeable additives.
The room also has a well organized desk with modcons like a universal charger, IDD phone with iPod dock, and a built in media panel with HDMI, USB and audio visual connectivity.
There are 150 rooms in all — deluxe, club and premier — occupying the third to ninth floor.
Activities. There’s a lot you can enjoy indoor and outdoor. There are two infinity pools — one for adults, one for kids; a playroom for toddlers; a fully equipped game room for kids and kids at heart, a favorite hangout of families. Seda’s Touch, the in house spa, has treatments ranging from a simple foot spa to full body massages. Club room and premier room guests get exclusive Club Lounge access on the fifth floor for free cocktails and snacks every day of their stay from 5pm to 7pm.
The hotel is also just a few steps to Solenad at Nuvali’s dining and retail outlets, and within easy reach of The Monochrome events place and sports facilities, including the wake-boarding site, Republic Wakepark Nuvali.
Solenad 1 has restaurants, cafes, and the famed koi fish of Nuvali, hundreds of it, that you can feed or simply marvel at. Right across it is Solenad 2 where there are more restaurants and shops. Nuvali is also big on biking and has jogging paths for morning or afternoon walks. Or you can hop on a boat for a boat ride across the lake. Just a five-minute drive from the hotel is Paseo de Santa Rosa which has outlet stores offering as much as 70% off on Nike shoes, buy one take one promos at Aldo, and discount rates for Sisley, Havaianas, Speedo, to name a few. Solenad 3 is also near the hotel.
Food. Misto offers an interesting mix of international and local dishes. My favorites are prawn salad with pomelo, crunchy greens with fresh prawns and pomelo drizzled in kaffir vinaigrette; the creamy buttery mushroom soup with shitake and button mushrooms; the salmon pesto wrapped in rice paper and served with raspberry mesclun salad; the prawns tempura, which is prepared using prawns so fresh they’re naturally sweet; and the lemongrass chicken. For dessert, Misto’s blueberry cheesecake is refreshing, with Oreo as base and topped generously with fruit slices. The carrot cake, which I chanced upon at the buffet breakfast, was so good I came back for it thrice. It’s good to find some regional local delicacies too at the breakfast buffet such as crispy danggit, dried fish from the Visayas that’s best eaten with fried rice and runny scrambled egg.
Service. Genuinely warm and professional.
We like. The beautiful view, the interiors, the service, strong WiFi connection from any part of the hotel, the lovely morning and afternoon walks the hotel’s location affords, my room’s HDMI panel, and again, fantastic view, and utmost tranquility offered. Plus of course the Club Lounge’s late afternoon complimentary cocktails.
Not so keen. Just minor niggly bits like no bidet and no counter at the shower to hold personal toiletries.
Verdict. Great for a quick weekend getaway from the city. Recommended.
Room nights for two with breakfast are P5,500++ (about US $131) for the deluxe room, P6,500++ for the club room, and P7,500++ for the premier room. The best rates are available if booked direct with the hotel online.
For inquiries and reservations call +6349 255 8888, visit Seda Nuvali.
Originally published in InFight Traveller October to December 2014. Updated April 2016