Stranded in the Island PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 12 September 2013 00:00

With the terror assault made by Misuari’s MNLF to our beloved Zamboanga City, my Dad and I are stranded in Mactan City, Cebu since Tuesday, September 10, 2013. We flew in from Iloilo City Monday evening with the hope that we can proceed home the following day.

Since we need to stay overnight, my wife booked us thru internet ( in advance to Cebu’s latest budget hotel –Islands Stay Hotel for two reasons. It was near the airport (less than 5 minutes) and the rate was very reasonable (as low as P850 promo rate). We got the medium room that cost P1,650 good for two, and since my Dad is a senior citizen, we paid only P 1,320. And since the assault dragged for days, we extended our stay here.

I am glad that we got holed up in this hotel while praying that everything will soon be Ok in our city. Aside from its strategic location, Islands Stay Hotel is a walking distance to SM Save and More Grocery where we bought our basic needs (food, water, toiletries, etc.). It is surrounded also from high end classy restaurants, coffee shop, and bars to friendly affordable carinderia, pharmacy, internet, and bakery shops. Everything is just near us – very convenient for us.
Islands Stay Hotel rate offer true value for budget-conscious travelers using the Japanese idea of a no-fuss, no non-sense attitude and a no-frills concept.  Simply stated, the hotel offers all the basic comforts to make their guest’s stay relaxing minus “other not needed amenities” that can add to cost like a gym, swimming pool, etc.  This is an advantage (great savings!) for guests like me who never expected to stay long.

The well-designed and air-conditioned room is wide, has a flat screen TV with cable, a bathroom with hot and cold shower amenity, and a comfy bed with a cotton duvet (not synthetic) blanket to keep us warm.

What I liked about this place too is the free 24 Wi-Fi connection that kept me at breast what’s happening in our city thru my Facebook account. For a business consultant and newspaper columnist like me, internet is very important in order to be connected with my clients and Pep Talk readers.  I can stay here for weeks!

Recently, Islands Stay Hotel was commended by TripAdvisor website as one of Cebu’s hotels that offers best customer service. I do agree and testify that indeed, their staff is very friendly and accommodating. They keep on smiling and asking what are your needs.

Though this assault incident was a hassle and stressful for all Zamboanga peace-loving people, it gave a bonding time for father and son. Dad and I went malling into Cebu’s shopping malls. We went “shopping” together. We went to the mall’s hardware store, bought new shirts in their flag ship department store, ate in well-known eateries, and I treated Dad to a first class salon for an hour pedicure (costly but worth it – his toe nails were sparking clean). We might see a movie after I emailed Pep Talk today.

Cebu Pacific has re-booked us to fly back to Zamboanga City on Friday, Sept. 13.  (Islands Stay Hotel-Mactan is located at ML Quezon Highway, Lapu-Lapu City, Mactan with Tel. (032) 239-5456 / 0915-5393133). The other Island Stay Hotel is located at Ayala Uptown, Cebu City.)

By Dante Corteza

Psalm 138:7 - God will deal with my enemies. “Though I walk in the midst of trouble, Thou wilt revive me; Thou wilt stretch forth Thy hand against the wrath of my enemies, And Thy right hand will save me.”