Where to Stay in Manila

Where to stay in Manila, the city of action and adventure

If you’re looking for the perfect vacation destination in the Philippines, Manila is the city that has it all. Amazing nightlife, rich culture and history, great food, and a bunch of fun and engaging activities make Manila one of the most popular tourist hotspots in the world. The tropical climate is obviously a huge bonus. This is a massive city, which can make your search for where to stay in Manila quite challenging. We have decided to make things easier for you with our list of the top five neighborhoods in the city.

Image by Dylan Gonzales from Pixabay

Transportation in Manila

Public transport in Manila will make it simple to get from one point to another. You can use the Point to Point (P2P) buses, LRT and MRT Railway lines, jeepneys, and taxis. All of these are quite affordable. It’s also possible to rent a car, but you’ll need an international driver’s license. Learn more about Manila’s public transport here.

Image Source: kisnapper

Five best neighborhoods to stay in Manila, Philippines

As the capital and largest city in the Philippines, Manila is huge. The city is divided into 16 different districts, each with its own charm and historical value. Things can easily get overwhelming when you’re looking where to stay in Manila, Philippines, which is why we did the work for you. Here are our top five neighborhoods for staying in Manila:

  1. Makati
  2. Poblacion
  3. Malate
  4. Quezon City
  5. Intramuros

We used the following factors for the final list:

  1. The vibe and atmosphere of the area
  2. Historical and cultural importance
  3. Fun things you can see and do
  4. Safety of the area
  5. Accommodation cost
  6. Ease of transport
Best neighborhoods to stay in Manila
Makati For a first-time visit Clean, safe, with plenty of attractions
Poblacion For a budget-friendly stay Hip, lively, and affordable area
Malate For nightlife fun Safe area with plenty of bars and clubs
Quezon City For a cool and boho vibe Creative and edgy neighborhood
Intramuros For families/long-term stay An old and historically important part of the city

Image by TheDigitalWay from Pixabay

Where to stay in Manila on your first visit – Makati

Makati is a high-end, central area of the city that won’t leave you with a moment to feel bored. The area is full of great restaurants, fashionable shops, fun clubs, and historical landmarks. The green spaces are truly breathtaking and ideal for getting away from the city’s hustle and bustle.

Image Source: jdonalvo

Where to go in Makati

  • Explore the parks and museums
  • Enjoy the partying, eating, and shopping

Best for outdoor and history lovers: Washington SyCip Park

Washington SyCip Park will leave you breathless. This gorgeous green space is ideal for relaxation and nice and mindful strolls after shopping and sightseeing. If you want to learn more about the culture and history of the city, head to the Ayala Museum.

Image Source: heyitsjoniii

Best for foodies, shoppers, and party-goers: Greenbelt

The Greenbelt mall is a must-stop for everyone who wants to experience high-end shopping. Shopping enthusiasts should also visit Glorietta. Greenbelt has plenty of awesome places for everyone. Black Market is the vibrant hotspot for fun nightlife. You can’t go wrong with The Exit Bar, The Penthouse 8747, and Blind Pig either. For tasty cuisine, head straight to Sala and the Milkyway Café.

Image Source: phil.belf

Where to stay in Manila, Philippines on a budget – Poblacion

Poblacion may be the city’s former red-light district, but now is the lively and hip place within Makati, ideal for the budget stay. It’s also famous for its vibrant nightlife and great restaurants.

Image Source: paulroid

Where to go in Poblacion

  • Treat your palate at amazing Poblacion’s restaurants and eateries
  • Enjoy some fun time at local bars, cafes, and clubs

Best for foodies: Tambai Yakitori Snackhouse

Tambai Yakitori Snackhouse is the most popular restaurant in the area for everyone who wants to taste some local specialties. Lobo also has a great Filipino menu. Asian Fare at Crying Tiger Street Kitchen and Alamat Filipino Pub and Deli are also worth your time.

Image Source: nicedomanog

Best for partying and booze: Joe’s Brew

Joe’s Brew is the best place in the area to get refreshing craft beer. Dr Wine is also very popular, especially if you want to drink your night away in a great atmosphere. Commune is the true hotspot for all coffee lovers.

Image Source: reyniejohn

Where to stay in Manila for nightlife – Malate

You can’t go wrong with Malate when you’re looking where to stay in Manila for some wild nightlife fun. The neighborhood is safe, which makes it easier to party all night long. Malate also has important cultural and historical sights together with fancy restaurants to complete your enjoyment.

Image Source: vivienmae

Where to go in Malate

  • Party, drink, and dance at popular bars and clubs
  • Eat the best food at hip restaurants and eateries

Best for party-goers: Club ZZYZX

If you don’t want the party to end, head to the Club ZZYZX and get wild from dusk till dawn. Verano Taft is also a great place to dance your night away. Local Caven Resto Bar has some of the best selection of drinks, while bar1951 is immensely popular for its live music shows.

Image Source: aquinocjane

Best for foodies: Bourn Food Station

Bourn Food Station and Café Adriatico are some of the best places to treat your palate with delicious dishes. Purple Yam, Café Havana, and The Chillout Project Kitchen & Bar are also deservingly popular.

Image Source: bournfoodstation

Where to stay in Manila, Philippines for a bohemian vibe – Quezon City

Those of you interested in the coolest Manila neighborhood should definitely stay in Quezon City. The area is booming with creativity, youthfulness, edginess, and boho spirit. This is the place where you’ll find a bunch of hip bars and restaurants, together with cat cafes and unique boutiques. It’s also considered to be a foodie paradise in Manila.

Image Source: rainycooorn

Where to go in Quezon City

  • Explore the national park and historical buildings
  • Party, enjoy refreshing drinks, and try delicious food

Best for outdoor and history enthusiasts: Quezon Memorial Circle

Quezon Memorial Circle is the national park in Manila, located in the traffic circle. Its elliptical shape, stunning sculptures, and picturesque greenery make it one of the most popular tourist attractions in Manila. This is also the neighborhood where you’ll find one of the oldest churches in the Philippines, called the Santuario de San Pedro Bautista Parish.

Image Source: cafedandy

Best for foodies and party people: Off the Grill Bar

Quezon City has a lot to offer to everyone who enjoys good food and partying. Off the Grill Bar and The Nautilus Bar are popular hotspots, but you should definitely check out Ma Mon Luk, The Manor Superclub, and The Distillery Eastwood, too.

Image Source: iamjodelaine

Where to stay in Manila long-term – Intramuros

Surrounded by the Spanish 16th-century walls, Intramuros is one of the oldest neighborhoods in the city, perfect for everyone looking where to stay in Manila, Philippines with their families or for a longer period. This is the cultural and historical hotspot of Manila with amazing green spaces and great restaurants.

Image Source: rameliavitra

Where to go in Intramuros

  • Explore the historical and cultural sites
  • Relax at parks and enjoy some fun activities

Best for history buffs: Fort Santiago

Fort Santiago includes a museum and a park, located within the 17th-century stone fortress. It’s a must-visit for every history fan. Make sure to check out Manila Cathedral, Bahay Tsinoy, the museum and gardens of San Agustin Church, and the fortification Baluarte de San Diego.

Image Source: emcphotography77

Best for relaxation and fun: Rizal Park

Rizal Park is the idyllic area in Intramuros where you can rest or take a stroll to immerse yourself in the natural beauties. If you want to get some souvenirs, go to the Mananzan Handicrafts and then satisfy your sweet cravings at Cioccolata – Churros Café. You can also get a ride in a horse-drawn carriage, called calesa.

Image Source: nomadsintraining2019

Best (and Worst) Coworking Spaces in Cebu

Best (and worst) coworking spaces in Cebu

Cebu is an island province of the Philippines Central Visayas region. The island has a long history of settlers from different parts of the world, all of whom have left an influence on the culture. Plenty of travelers that go there to live and work will find everything they need in Cebu City. 

As it stands, it’s the only place where you’ll find reliable internet and coworking places. The island may not be the #1 place to set up your long term business plan, but it’s definitely a top pick for those who enjoy working and traveling. Remote workers who enjoy being close to nature will particularly like it. The island’s main city will be your working headquarters, while on the weekends, you can enjoy the amazing nature preserves out of town. You can also check out our local guide to Cebu to find things to see and do while staying there.

With more and more jobs moving out of corporate offices and into personal space, people no longer need to be permanently situated for work. This opened up pretty much the entire world to digital nomads and gave rise to a new work culture globally. Major tourist destinations, like Cebu, are now catering to this new age of travelers and settlers. As a result, Cebu City is full of amazing coworking spaces. Here’s the list of nine great and two bad coworking spaces:

Check out:

  1. ASPACE Crossroads
  2. The Company IT Park
  3. KMC Flexible Workspace
  4. Openmind Coworking Space
  5. Altspace Cafe
  6. ACX Outsourcing Hub
  7. Nomads Hub
  8. Avant Offices Inc
  9. Workplace Cafe

Avoid:

  1. Desko
  2. iioffice

Our favorite coworking space in Cebu is ASPACE Crossroads

Source: ASPACE Facebook

ASPACE Crossroads is highly praised for its focus on community building. It heavily invests in social gatherings, celebrating popular holidays, themed events, etc. This approach makes it a place where people come and stay for a long while. It also has a dedicated TEDx host space with some special events. The workspace interior is mostly in elegant black, white, and gray, with splashes of color from different types of artwork. It’s pet-friendly and has cozy relaxing areas where you can take a break. 

A drawback could be that it might seem a bit unprofessional since the rooms have empty concrete walls and an open ceiling, making it look unfinished. That being said, it’s among the most highly praised coworking spaces in Cebu, and the prices are also competitive.

Basics
Pricing Hot desk per day: $10 (PHP 500)

Hot desk per week: $40 (PHP 2,000)

Hot desk per month: $100 (PHP 5,000)

Dedicated desk per month: $200 (PHP 10,000)
Private office, five people, one month: $990 (PHP 50,000)

High-Speed Internet 100 megabit fiber
Open Hours
    • Monday – Friday: 8 am – 8 pm
    • Saturday & Sunday: closed
  • Members have access 24/7
Ergonomics
Comfortable Chairs Yes
Standing Desk Yes
Workspaces
Dedicated Desks Yes
Private Offices Yes
Conference room / Event rooms Yes
Phone booths / Skype rooms No
Coliving No

Here are the other coworking spaces in Cebu we liked

The Company Cebu

Source: The Company Facebook

The Company Cebu coworking space is located in the city center in the area known as IT Park. The list of perks and amenities this space offers is great, but what really makes it stand out is their focus on building a community. They offer so many out-of-work activities, such as drink and lunch evenings, workshops, and even TEDx events. They also connect all the members through a Facebook group and a community app. This makes meeting new people and finding new business and other connections easy. Although it doesn’t offer its own coliving space, there are plenty of affordable Airbnb’s nearby.

Basics
Pricing Hot desk per day: $8 (PHP 400)

Dedicated desk per month: $180 (PHP 9,000)

Private office, two people, one month: $515 (PHP 26,000)
Private office, four people, one month: $871 (PHP 44,000) 
Private office, six people, one month: $1,190 (PHP 60,000) 
Private office, eight people, one month: $1,700 (PHP 86,000)
Private office, ten people, one month: $1,980 (PHP 100,000)

High-Speed Internet 100 megabit fiber
Open Hours
  • Monday – Friday: 9 am – 7 pm
  • Saturday & Sunday: closed
Ergonomics
Comfortable Chairs Yes
Standing Desk Yes
Workspaces
Dedicated Desks Yes
Private Offices Yes
Conference room / Event rooms Yes
Phone booths / Skype rooms Yes
Coliving No (Airbnb nearby)

KMC Flexible Workspace

Source: KMC Solutions

The Flexible Workspace is part of the KMC Skyrise 4 building—an 18 story rentable office space spanning over 13,000 square meters. The state-of-the-art building is equipped with 24/7 IT support staff, backup power generators, and multiple internet connections. Among the coworking spaces in Cebu, this office building is definitely one of, if not the most modern. The prices are surprisingly fair, all things considered. There are also plenty of community events, workshops, and social gatherings to take part in. Other useful facilities in the space include:

  • Childcare
  • Full kitchen
  • Showers
  • Lounge
  • Yoga studio
  • Meditation room

Basics
Pricing Hot desk per month: $100 (PHP 5,000)

Dedicated desk per month: $300 (PHP 15,000)
Private offices per month: Many options, contact for negotiations

High-Speed Internet 100 megabit fiber
Open Hours
    • Monday – Friday: 8 am – 8 pm
    • Saturday & Sunday: closed
  • Members have access 24/7
Ergonomics
Comfortable Chairs Yes
Standing Desk Yes
Workspaces
Dedicated Desks Yes
Private Offices Yes
Conference room / Event rooms Yes
Phone booths / Skype rooms Yes
Coliving No (Airbnb nearby)

Openmind Coworking Space

Source: Openmind Facebook

Located in the IT Park of Cebu City, what immediately sets Openmind apart is that it’s open 24/7 and has rates to accommodate early birds and night owls. This feature is a favorite among young workers who enjoy flexible working hours. The space is more oriented towards freelancers and small groups. They have a set of fixed prices, but you can ask about additional discounts depending on the time you aim to be there. Usually, they’ll offer lower prices for evening and night shifts. There are a few private offices that you have to book in advance— bear in mind that they get rented out quickly. The furnishing is modern, and there’s plenty of equipment to use. Openmind also has free parking on the premises. The only downside is that most desks are somewhat clumped up.

Basics
Pricing Hot desk per day: $10 (PHP 500)

Hot desk per week: $60 (PHP 3,000)

Hot desk per month: $200 (PHP 10,000)

Hot desk, six months: $190 (PHP 9,700)/Month

Hot desk, one year: $188 (PHP 9,500)/Month

Dedicated desk per month: $200 (PHP 10,000)

High-Speed Internet 100 megabit fiber
Open Hours
  • Open 24/7
Ergonomics
Comfortable Chairs Yes
Standing Desk Yes
Workspaces
Dedicated Desks Yes
Private Offices No
Conference room / Event rooms No
Phone booths / Skype rooms Yes
Coliving No (Airbnb nearby)

Altspace Cafe

Source: Instagram @Altspace.ph

Altspace is a minimalistic cafe offering food and drinks and a great place to work or study. Owned and operated by a local couple, the place is small and able to fit 25 people tops. It’s clean and cozy and maintains a family atmosphere. The drink and food choices are good, and there are usually promotional prices on workspace packages. When you get tired, you can relax in the lounge area and grab a bite to eat or have a hot drink. The only drawback, like with other coworking cafes, is that it’s walk-in only. The cafe is also rentable for larger events.

Basics
Pricing Hot desk per hour: $0.50 (PHP 35)

Hot desk per day: $5 (PHP 250)

Hot desk per week: $20 (PHP 1,000)

Hot desk month: $70 (PHP 3,500)

High-Speed Internet 100 megabit fiber
Open Hours
  • Monday – Friday: 8 am – 00:00 am
  • Saturday: 10 am – 7 pm
  • Sunday: closed
Ergonomics
Comfortable Chairs Yes
Standing Desk Yes
Workspaces
Dedicated Desks Yes
Private Offices No
Conference room / Event rooms Yes
Phone booths / Skype rooms No
Coliving No

ACX Outsourcing Hub

Source: ACX Hub Facebook

ACX Hub is an IT and digital marketing agency based in Cebu. Within their offices, they offer a small coworking space. It is noteworthy because it’s exceptionally affordable and has plenty of rates to choose from. It’s quiet, making it ideal for students to study or work on projects. The furniture is not as great as in some other places, but having in mind the more-than-reasonable price, it’s definitely not bad. 

Individual freelancers might like their simple cubicles, while small groups can use the big tables.  Unfortunately, it’s not equipped to hold entire teams of people. Still, within this relatively small space, they manage to organize community gatherings, workshops, and events you can attend. The internet speeds are crazy good, easily going over 300 Mbps. While not offering a lot, ACX is definitely worth mentioning.

Basics
Pricing Hot desk per hour: $0.50 (PHP 30)

Hot desk per day: $5 (PHP 250)

Hot desk per week: $20 (PHP 1,000)

Hot desk month: $70 (PHP 3,500)

Dedicated desk per month: $80 (PHP 4,000)

High-Speed Internet 300+ megabit fiber
Open Hours
    • Monday – Friday: 9 am – 5 pm
    • Saturday: Friday: 9 am – 6 pm
    • Sunday: closed
  • Members have access 24/7
Ergonomics
Comfortable Chairs Yes (not everywhere, though)
Standing Desk No
Workspaces
Dedicated Desks Yes
Private Offices No
Conference room / Event rooms Yes
Phone booths / Skype rooms Yes
Coliving No

Nomads Hub

Source: Nomadshub.ph Facebook

Nomads Hub is one of the few coworking and coliving spaces in Cebu. Apart from getting work done, guests can rent hostel beds, use the laundromat, and get food and drinks while they stay. The location is also nice and central, with plenty of things to see and do around the motel. The drawback is that there aren’t dedicated workstations, so it tends to fill up quite fast, and you could end up without space. Members enjoy being part of a tight community that holds events like:

  • Social gatherings
  • Workshops
  • Mentorship programs

Basics
Pricing Hot desk per hour: $0.70 (PHP 35)

Hot desk per day: $6 (PHP 300)

Hot desk month: $90 (PHP 4,500)

High-Speed Internet 100 megabit fiber
Open Hours
  • Open 24/7
Ergonomics
Comfortable Chairs Yes
Standing Desk Yes
Workspaces
Dedicated Desks No
Private Offices No
Conference room / Event rooms Yes
Phone booths / Skype rooms Yes
Coliving Yes

Workplace Cafe

Source: Facebook Workplace Cafe

As the name suggests, the Workplace Cafe is aimed towards those that enjoy working under the coziness of a cafe but need the reliability of an office. The atmosphere will be casual, but the furniture looks classy. There are a total of three Workplaces Cafes around Cebu:

  1. Ramos, Cebu City
  2. Banawa, Cebu City
  3. Tipolo, Mandaue City

Feel free to visit any of their branches. The cafes are all good at what they offer to the individual workers but definitely aren’t for group projects. They’re worth checking out, though.

Basics
Pricing Hot desk per hour: $1 (PHP 50)

Hot desk per day: $6 (PHP 300)

Hot desk der week: $31 (PHP 1,600)

Hot desk month: $100 (PHP 5,000)

High-Speed Internet 100 megabit fiber
Open Hours
  • Monday – Friday: 8 am – 2 am
  • Saturday: closed
  • Sunday: closed
Ergonomics
Comfortable Chairs Yes
Standing Desk Yes
Workspaces
Dedicated Desks No
Private Offices No
Conference room / Event rooms No
Phone booths / Skype rooms No
Coliving No

Avant Offices Inc

Source: Avant Offices Facebook

Avant Offices is a gorgeous office setting where less means more. The interior design is simplistic but not monotone. This does leave visitors with a slightly more corporate and serious vibe. Unfortunately, that’s pretty much all Avant Offices offers. 

The space doesn’t exactly offer any reason to pick it over the others. It’s more of a “get in, get work done, and leave” type of setting. This reminds people too much of regular jobs, which freelancers and remote workers tend to run away from. The private offices are great, though. Because of this, we recommend this place much more to groups than to individuals. Smaller businesses and startups might find a home in this space.

Basics
Pricing Hot desk per day: $10 (PHP 500)

Hot desk per month: $160 (PHP 8,000)

Dedicated desk per month: $200 (PHP 10,000)

Private office, Six people, one month: $1,485 (PHP 75,000)

Private office, 12 people, one month: $1,680 (PHP 85,000)

Private office, 20 people, one month: $3,170 (PHP 160,000)

High-Speed Internet 100 megabit fiber
Open Hours
    • Monday – Friday: 8:30 am – 7:30 pm
    • Saturday: closed
    • Sunday: closed
  • Members have access 24/7
Ergonomics
Comfortable Chairs Yes (not everywhere)
Standing Desk No
Workspaces
Dedicated Desks Yes
Private Offices Yes
Conference room / Event rooms No
Phone booths / Skype rooms No
Coliving No

These are the two coworking spaces we would not recommend

Desko Cebu

Source: Facebook Desko

Desko is a 24/7 coworking space with an onsite restaurant and cafe, and plenty of free drinks. And that’s all the positives summed up. The space offers no private office or dedicated desks, meaning you have to find your own space. That won’t be an issue, though, as it’s been quite empty recently. Users have reported issues such as:

  1. Water shortage
  2. Internet losing connection or slowing down
  3. Unavailable or uninterested staff

To make things worse, the prices are quite high for what it offers. There are just too many better options, even nearby.

Basics
Pricing Hot desk per hour: $1 (PHP 50)

Hot desk per day: $10 (PHP 500)

Hot desk per week: $50 (PHP 2,500) 

Hot desk per month: $150 (PHP 7,500)

High-Speed Internet 100 megabit fiber
Open Hours
  • Open 24/7
Ergonomics
Comfortable Chairs Yes
Standing Desk No
Workspaces
Dedicated Desks No
Private Offices No
Conference room / Event rooms No
Phone booths / Skype rooms No
Coliving No

iioffice Cebu

Source: iioffice Facebook

At first glance, there’s nothing wrong with iioffice. The interior is nice, and it seems well equipped. So, what’s the issue? Every desk, office space, and conference room are on a first-come, first-served basis. You can’t rent your spot in advance and be sure you’ll have it. This makes it practically impossible for groups of people to coordinate, much less work in private. You may even end up without a place to sit if you come in too late. There are some ergonomic chairs, but not enough of them. Some are reported to be overused and in dire need of replacing. This leaves some people sitting on plastic chairs or armchairs. 

The positive note about iioffice is that it is noticeably cheaper. Other than that, the company doesn’t offer us good enough reason to choose it over other spaces.

Basics
Pricing Hot desk per day: $6 (PHP 300)

Hot desk per month: $80 (PHP 4,000)

High-Speed Internet 100 megabit fiber
Open Hours
  • Monday — Friday: 9 am – 7 pm
  • Saturday: 9 am – 7 pm
  • Sunday: closed
Ergonomics
Comfortable Chairs Yes (not everywhere)
Standing Desk Yes
Workspaces
Dedicated Desks No
Private Offices No
Conference room / Event rooms No
Phone booths / Skype rooms No
Coliving No

Best (and Worst) Coworking Spaces in Boracay

5 great coworking spaces in Boracay (and one to skip)

Located in the Philippines, Boracay is a small island full of resorts, hotels, restaurants, and cafés. Although there is still a long way to go to make this place ideal for expats and digital nomads, this island is taking small and sure steps in that direction. Boracay is usually a weekend stop for digital nomads who stay in Manila, offering a peaceful beach setting and magnificent views of the sea. Take a look at this travel vlog to get ideas for what to do and see in Boracay:     

Those who use the island as their work base have to accept that the internet is slow and not meant for major uploads and downloads. On the plus side, since foreigners love to visit Boracay, you won’t have a problem communicating with the locals since they know sufficient English. While you won’t find a real coworking space here, coffee shops and eateries are adequate to replace them. Here are some of them you can work from, and one that you should skip.

The Lazy Dog Bed & Breakfast is the nicest place to cowork in Boracay

Image source: The Lazy Dog Bed & Breakfast Facebook

The Lazy Dog Bed & Breakfast is located close to the Bulabog Beach in the Balabag district. This is not an ideal coworking space, but you will find everything you need here to have a productive day. 

The Wi-Fi is better than in some coffee shops but still not even close to the speeds you can find in Manila. If you don’t have to send huge files or download anything big, you can do just fine with the internet here. In-house Whiskey’s Café is perfect for working in peace in the shade of the palm trees and drinking freshly squeezed juice. The chairs are far from ergonomic, but comfortable to sit on for a while. To change position, you can use low walls as standing desks or sit down on the cushions and work at the coffee table.

We love that this hostel is true to its name, and dogs and cats are all around, sleeping or stopping by for pets. If you want to go for a walk or swim, you can leave your things in the lockers and not worry about them. In the evenings, guests from all over the world gather at the café and mingle, which is a great opportunity for networking.       

Basics
Pricing estimates Moderate
High-Speed Internet No
Open Hours
  • Monday–Friday: 7 am–10 pm
  • Saturday: 7 am–10 pm
  • Sunday: 7 am–10 pm
Workspace
Comfortable Chairs Yes
Standing Desk Yes
Phone No
Coliving Yes

 Little Wave is our least favorite place to cowork in Boracay

Image source: Little Wave Facebook

Little Wave is a small coffee shop in the Manoc-Manoc district, close to the main road on the island. It’s located in a cluster of many eateries and cafés, so you don’t have to go far to find a more comfortable place for work. Chairs are on the top of our list of the most uncomfortable, made from some sort of metal and without upholstery.

During our stay, the Wi-Fi was unreliable and disappeared from the list of available networks several times. This was a miscalculation on our part since we came here during the lunch hour, and too many people were connected. 

We gave up working after a while and decided to enjoy the food with many vegetarian options. The salted egg coffee is their signature beverage and something we recommend you try when in Little Wave. The staff was friendly and stopped by our table a few times to make sure everything was in order with our food.

Basics
Pricing estimates Moderate
High-Speed Internet No
Open Hours
  • Monday–Friday: 8 am–10:30 pm
  • Saturday: 8 am–10:30 pm
  • Sunday: 8 am–10:30 pm
Workspace
Comfortable Chairs No
Standing Desk No
Phone No
Coliving No

Five places to cowork in Boracay’s Balabag district we also enjoyed

No matter if you are having coffee, cake or beer while you work, the following places are good enough to get the work done:

  1. Starbucks
  2. Titos
  3. Tom N Toms
  4. Sea Breeze
  5. Coco Cafe

Starbucks

Image source: Starbucks Facebook

Starbucks is located in a three-story building, with the roof being the best part if you want to work while looking at the beach below. This is a familiar place with decent coffee and reliable but still slow Wi-Fi.

If you are lucky to come here when it’s not crowded, you can take the comfortable seats by the wall. Otherwise, you will have to either make do with wooden chairs or use your travel stand desk as we did. The staff speaks several languages, so you won’t have problems communicating with them. Too bad the internet connection is less than perfect, or we would come here to work every day.        

Titos

Image source: Titos Facebook

Titos is the best place to try Filipino dishes and have lunch on the roof with a wonderful view of palms and the beach. The Wi-Fi will not falter even when the place is crowded, so you will have no problem working here until your food arrives. 

We don’t recommend staying here for long since the colorful chairs are far from comfortable, and our backs weren’t that happy after an hour of sitting. If you plan to come here, note that Titos opens at noon, and you will hardly find it without guests. If you want to concentrate on work, it’s best to find another place and come here only for the local cuisine.    

Tom N Toms Coffee in Balabag

Image source: Tom N Toms Coffee Facebook

Tom N Toms Coffee is a Starbucks doppelganger — all with comfortable chairs and a great choice of coffees. 

The Wi-Fi here is unreliable. Some days it works well, and you can finish your tasks without too much fuss, and others, it will be annoyingly slow and useless. The good thing is that Tom N Toms is not a loud place, and you can work without distractions from other patrons. The big plus is that they’re open 24/7, so you can come here and work anytime you want (if the internet is operational).

The Sea Breeze Café in Balabag

Image source: Sea Breeze website

Sea Breeze is part of the Henann Regency Resort & Spa on the Beachfront. This is a big space full of comfortable chairs and serving buffets for reasonable prices.

It is a good place to come for breakfast and start on the morning tasks since it’s quiet. The internet was fine, but nothing to write home about, like everywhere else in Boracay. Avoid coming here to work in the afternoons since that is family time, and you will hardly be able to work from all the noise.

Coco Cafe in Balabag

Image source: Coco Café Facebook

Coco Cafe is one of the few air-conditioned coffee shops on the island, so working there was especially nice.

The tables aren’t too close to each other, so you can have privacy, and no one can take a peek at your computer. We had some trouble connecting to the Wi-Fi, but once we did, it worked fine. We suggest you try their mango smoothie. It will help you start the day energized and ready to give your 100% at work.

Here are other places to cowork in Boracay:

Best (and Worst) Coworking Spaces in El Nido

Can island-hopping and coworking go hand in hand? The best and worst places to work from in El Nido!

Technological advancements have caused numerous online jobs to sprout. The people working remotely are no longer settling for being permanently home-based but are fervently exploring new places to work from. Although there are countless exceptional coworking spaces in the leading metropolises around the globe, digital nomads have yet again upped the game. Now, they are taking their remote work to the most idyllic and detached spots on earth. It is no wonder that visiting El Nido is high up on their bucket lists. But what can this tropical paradise offer in terms of coworking options?

The choice of places to work from in El Nido

Image source: xavidearanda

Although there aren’t many coworking spaces in El Nido, it shouldn’t hinder you from working from here. As long as you’re willing to lower your expectations a bit, you can still manage both to work and play in El Nido. Many hotels and cafes can serve that purpose. You can also set up your own working station wherever you decide to stay. Make sure the place has solid Wi-Fi and, ideally, a power generator, pour yourself a cup of strong coffee, set up your travel stand desk, and you are all set! After you’re done grinding for the day, you can dedicate yourself to making the most of the outdoor activities El Nido has to offer!

Which spots are worth pursuing to work from in El Nido?

Keeping all of the above in mind, we’ve compiled a list of some of the places you could work from in between all the parties and other activities available in El Nido. We spill the good and the bad about all of them so that you can make an informed decision. Or you could just try them all!

We present to you the spots we deem worth checking out:

  1. Clock-In in Hotel Covo, Lio Estate Resorts
  2. WRKSPCE xLEXIAS
  3. Botanica El Nido
  4. Seda Hotels
  5. V and V Bagel
  6. Art Cafe

Clock-In by AyalaLand Offices in Hotel Covo, Lio Estate Resorts is the best coworking space in El Nido!

Source: Clock-In by AyalaLand Offices

Clock-In is set in the Hotel Covo in Lio Estate Resorts in El Nido and is the only all-encompassing coworking venue there. Although it doesn’t identify itself as a coworking space per se, it does offer all the amenities for workers on the go, freelancers, and teams in need of a rentable office.

You can rent a coworking seat at a hot desk on an hourly or daily basis and enjoy the benefits of high-speed internet of up to 35 Mbps. You also get unlimited access to their utilities, coffee, water, and tea. The meeting and conference rooms are equipped with all the necessary equipment, such as smart LED TV, VOIP phones, and a whiteboard. The rentable event space has a sound system and a wall-mounted projector and screen. Clock-In also offers the Virtual Office service, which puts the handling of your calls, emails, and parcels at their care.

If you find yourself at another Clock-In location, you can use your pass to access that spot at no additional charge. The bonus is that if you choose to stay at Hotel Covo, you get an authentic coliving experience, with the benefit of having your workspace just a few floors away.

Basics
Pricing
  • Per hour: P 89 (hot desk)
  • Per day: P 357 (hot desk)
  • Per hour: P 446 (6-person meeting room)
  • Per hour: P 3348 (event space)
High-Speed Internet 100 megabit fiber
Open Hours
  • Monday – Friday: 8.30 am – 5.30 pm
  • Saturday: Closed
  • Sunday: Closed
  • No 24-hour member access
Ergonomics
Comfortable Chairs No
Standing Desk Yes
Workspaces
Dedicated Desks No
Conference Rooms Yes
Private Offices Yes
Conference room / Event rooms Yes
Phone booths / Skype rooms No
Coliving Yes

WRKSPCE xLEXIAS is the runner up coworking space in EL Nido!

Source: Lexias El Nido

WRKSPCE xLEXIAS is a coworking space that is a part of the Lexias hostel. The hotel has a strong Wi-Fi signal that is available in all rooms and social areas. There are a bar and restaurant on the premises that serve meals made from ingredients grown in their own organic garden.

The coworking space itself offers hot desks, meeting rooms, a Skype booth, and event spaces. It is directly attached to the Nolita Bistro and the T-Rex bar, so you can enjoy a hearty meal or a beverage while you work.

The accommodation here is rather inexpensive, so the place makes an excellent coliving option as well.

Basics
Room prices
  • Dormitory rooms (6 bunk beds): starting from $19
  • Junior private room (1 single + 2 double beds): starting from $69
  • Superior private room (1 single + 2 double beds): starting from $79
High-Speed Internet 100 megabit fiber
Open Hours
  • Monday – Friday: 24 hours
  • Saturday: 9 am – 00.00 pm
  • Sunday: 9 am – 00.00 pm
Ergonomics
Comfortable Chairs No
Standing Desk No
Workspaces
Dedicated Desks No
Conference Rooms No
Private Offices Yes
Conference room / Event rooms Yes
Phone booths / Skype rooms Yes
Coliving Yes

Botanica El Nido is a cafe turned coworking space whose coffee you don’t want to miss out on!

Source: Trip Advisor

Botanica is a premiere cafe, restaurant, gin bar, and coworking space in El Nido. This place is praised for its excellent coffee—the cappuccino, in particular. Here, you won’t have to worry about not being fueled for your work endeavors.

The Botanica cafe is generally quite quiet, although it is one of the most frequented in El Nido due to its delicious pastry. The only complaint is that the smells from the kitchen tend to frequently get into the area where the patrons are. If that could be a problem for you, you may want to consider another option.

Address Amboy Street corner Pecado, El Nido
Working hours 7 am – 10 pm
Price range P 250 – 600

Seda Lio Hotel offers elegant workspace options for teams in El Nudo!

Source: Seda Lio Hotels

Seda Lio Hotel in El Nido doesn’t offer a traditional coworking space as such. Still, the place has state-of-the-art conference rooms and a spacious event venue that can be partitioned into two smaller areas. These make perfect settings for working in teams, having conference calls, and conducting brainstorming sessions.

The Narra event room can host up to 150 people, which makes it ideal for most seminars or workshops. It can be expanded to 300 seats by adding a landscaped deck. There are 4 IPIL conference rooms that can hold 15–40 people.

The hotel also offers a gym, the Misto restaurant, and a game room for spending time off work. There is also a children’s playroom, in case you need a place to drop your kids off while you work.

V and V Bagel in El Nido has a stable Wi-Fi connection that you can work with!

Source: V and V Bagel

V and V Bagel serves delicious meals reminiscent of New York City. You can taste burgers, bagels, pasta, and cheesecake that are to die for! Apart from having your fill with flavors that will take you to a Western world, you can sit at a table and get some work done. The Wi-Fi is much more reliable than in other places in El Nido, so you would likely be able to use most of the apps that you normally would.

Address Hama Street, El Nido, Palawan 5313
Working hours 7.30 am – 10 pm
Wi-Fi strength
  • Download speed: 0.20 Mbps
  • Upload speed: 0.70 Mbps

Art Cafe has the least reliable Wi-Fi in El Nido!

Source: El Nido Boutique and Art Cafe

When you search for “best cafes with Wi-Fi in El Nido, the Philippines,” one of the top results will most certainly be Art Cafe. While it is true that this spot has truly delicious dishes and the most mouthwatering desserts on offer, its internet reception is so poor that it cannot even send an image or an email without giving you a headache. Forget about streaming video in here. Although the atmosphere may be conducive to productive work, as it is generally a quiet place, if you need good W-Fi for your work, the Art cafe is not the place for you.

Address Sirena St., Buena Suerte
Working hours 7 am – 7.30 pm
Wi-Fi strength (speedtest.com)
  • Download speed: 0.9 Mbps
  • Upload speed: 0.37 Mbps

Get to know the breathtaking El Nido in the Philippines

El Nido is located at the northern tip of the Philippine island of Palawan. It is a cluster of 45 tiny, mesmerizing islands that are ideal for island hopping. With its pristine white beaches, turquoise lagoons, awe-inspiring caves, towering cliffs, and rich wildlife, the place is the sole definition of perfection. You won’t have a hard time finding ideas to put on your itinerary in El Nido. Here are some of the activities you could do:

  • Swim in the lagoons
  • Search for secret beaches
  • Dive
  • Scuba dive
  • Snorkel
  • Kayak
  • Get wild on a party boat

Try not to get caught up in all the fun El Nido has to offer. Not only will you not do any work, but you will also be broke before you know it. El Nido is hardly the most expensive place on the planet, but it, unfortunately, only has one ATM (at the Municipal Hall). Make sure you bring enough cash to last you your whole trip and plan your spendings ahead. Try to stick to your budget as much as possible, and avoid any spur-of-the-moment expenses. Although the one ATM is there, it can be out of service when you least expect it or become emptied out in peak seasons when there are loads of tourists around. The next closest ATM machine is in the Palawan capital, Puerto Princesa, which is five hours away.

If you have enough cash, you can island hop and scuba dive in El Nido to your heart’s desire. What if you also want to get some work done? Let’s see how you can have the best of both worlds in El Nido.

Can you cowork in El Nido?

For all the reasons listed above, El Nido has become synonymous with paradise. Enjoying a heaven on Earth such as this one comes at a cost. Being so secluded can mean it could be challenging to meet your work expectations.

You should know that El Nido experiences frequent blackouts. 30–60-minute power outages are commonplace here, and it may surprise you to hear that is an improvement on the previous situation. A couple of years back, this place only had power from 6 pm to 4 am. Although many hotels now have their own generators, it might be a good idea to bring your own power bank as a backup.

Another possible hindrance may be the crowd if you happen to be in El Nido at the height of the season. Since the place is quite busy at that time of year, you would need a quiet, less frequented place to work from with minimum distractions.

Wi-Fi on the Palawan island

The strength of the Wi-Fi signal is instrumental for online work. Given that El Nido is located off the beaten track, Wifi and phone reception may prove challenging there. Wireless sim cards are an option but are not ideal as they tend to be super slow in touristic places. The best option is to work from a big hotel or carry your own 3D router.

Internet Speed
Wi-Fi in most hostels, cafes, and restaurants 3–6 Mbps
Big hotel resorts up to 10 Mbps but divided among all users
Landline internet 5–20 Mbps ideally

Will you come to El Nido?

El Nido is the prime example of the scenic landscape, lush forests, and turquoise lagoons that are a must-see on any traveler’s list. Apart from being able to enjoy perfect, unspoiled nature, you will likely meet other nomads or expats in this place and will be able to make lasting connections with like-minded people.

Although you will most likely have to try out several cafes and hotels before you find the spot that most agrees with your remote work requirements, we’re sure El Nido will have something for you. The most important thing to remember is not to let the power outages and intermittent Wi-Fi discourage you from visiting this heavenly place. We assure you that you will be handsomely rewarded with plenty of unforgettable memories during your time off work in El Nido!