Looking for a place to stay for Sinulog Festival in Cebu will always be difficult if you decided only a couple months before the January celebration. Most tourists, foreigners and locals, booked ahead of time, as in like 6 months would be a good time to make a room reservation when you’re coming to Cebu.
Just imagine how hard it was when I started to book any rooms through HotelQuickly, TripAdisor, Agoda, Airbnb, and other self-hosted hotel websites, barely two weeks before the Sinulog Festival.
Until I arrived in Cebu, almost 10PM, last Jan. 16 from my Manila flight, I wasn’t able to make any reservations because all of the properties that I checked were fully booked already.
Thanks to Atty. Ethelbert, a Cebu blogger, he referred me to Ford’s Inn, a budget-hotel in A.S. Fortuna Street corner Banilad, Mandaue, just as I was already making plans of spending the night in Mactan-Cebu International Airport. Atty. Ethelbert sent me a message telling me that Ford’s Inn might still have one more room left available for occupancy.
I hurriedly left Mactan airport after I successfully booked a GrabTaxi ride to Banilad.
After 30 minutes, I arrived at the hotel and quickly walked-in for booking. It took me almost another 30 minutes before I was served. Jeanz, the receptionist was making sure that they still have an available room by calling the person in-charge of room service.
I was booked at a Standard Room with room rate at PHP 1,650 for an overnight stay good for two persons with buffet breakfast. Well, I thought that rate was still a bit high but since I have nowhere else to go, I signed up for 2N/3D stay. The day was counted as I arrived, without discounts, and accordingly at regular rates. Considering there wont be any available rooms from nearby hotels during that time, I really had no choice.
So I was booked from January 16-18. I paid a total of PHP 3,300 for this last-minute booking.
The Standard Room is a pretty big room with two beds (single and matrimonial). There’s a bathroom, air-con, and a cable TV. Nothing fancy.
Though Ford’s Inn couldn’t be compared with other 2-stars hotel, I must say the hotel staff gave me enough reasons to come back to their property. They’re friendly and good conversationalists. Even if I’m not a Cebuano, they tried their best speaking in Tagalog.
Food during breakfast were simple. They had dishes to cater both locals and foreigners alike, such as pancit, bread, hotdog, adobo, fried chicken, tocino, egg, coffee, etc.
You just have to wake up early for beakfast so you can be the first in line at the breakfast table.
Ford’s Inn Hotel might not be the best place to stay if you’re planning to be part of the Sinulog Festival. You cannot see the fluvial parade along A.S. Fortuna. Banilad us also around 10 minutes away to Ayala Center and 20 minutes away to Fuente Circle where the Grand Parade is showcased.
But jeepney rides are available to take you to the places you want to go and you wont get lost around the city if you follow the numbered signs on the jeepneys that points to the destination they are going.
If I must go back? Sure. But maybe only as my last resort. I will still choose hotels nearby Ayala Center or near the city proper if my destinations are within that area.
On the scale of 1 to 10, Ford’s Inn Hotel deserves a score of 8.
Here are their contact numbers in Cebu: 344-7980 to 82.