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Friday, July 19, 2024

Iloilo’s cool Bhive vibe

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It is not a home for bees, although the Bhive boutique hotel immediately feels like a warm embrace. No-frills travelers will fall in love with the establishment at Taft North, Mandurriao, Iloilo City.   

A cross between a cozy bed and breakfast and a service apartment, the minimalist appeal invites travelers to let their guard down and chill. There is a sudden urge to rush the check-in procedure to find out if the guest rooms exude the same vibe – they will not be disappointed.

The charm of recycled wood and cement gray walls paints a cozy rustic experience. The receiving area is adorned with shelves made from wood crates to match the palette benches and tables. The small wood surfaces are attached to the check-in counter,   a thoughtful accent as these could be utilized for filling out forms, or a bag rest during transaction.

Another interesting element is Benito’s coffee bar in the lobby. Hotel owners Ben and Richel Goriceta ran a coffee shop in Boracay before they settled down. They frequented the island to escape the city crowd. 

The bedroom has a seating area with wooden benches, the perfect spot for a coffee break

“Ben fell in love with Boracay and decided to put up a business. Most of our friends are restobar owners so coffee shop na lang,” Richel said. 

The couple found the hotel property, as they were looking for an apartment after they got married. They immediately liked the location and rented one of the units. After a few years, the owner decided to sell the property. Their construction business was thriving, so the couple transformed the apartment building into a hotel.

The minimalist interior was a practical approach according to the owners. “It’s an old apartment building it was very challenging to go for a typical hotel design.   We chose an industrial concept design combining concrete, wood, steel, and glass and recycled materials like wood crates and palettes. We also incorporated colors and other small decors   in each room to make it more cozy.” 

From the lobby, a glass door leads to an atrium perfect breather, from all the movement in the reception. The mix of colorful chairs on artificial grass is very playful and inviting. From here, guests can take the stairs to their rooms.

The main lobby uses concrete, wood, steel, and glass to maintain a minimalist interior

The private areas are just as cozy. Faithful to the grey walls and palette wood design, the family room has a seating area with wooden benches topped with throw pillows, a small table for two,   an open closet, and a fridge. The full-size mirror makes it the perfect dressing area, although the sleeping room and bathroom are just as spacious. 

On the top floor is B’place, an open-air bar that is often rented for special events. “We needed to maximize the space, and the view was amazing, so we thought of a rooftop bar. It was a very good decision.” 

A few meters down the road is Megaworld Boulevard, which houses shopping malls, hotels, and the sprawling Iloilo business park. “That’s one of the reasons why we converted the apartment building to a boutique hotel. We saw the potential of this location,” Richel said. 

Bhive Hotel can be booked via RedDoorz or visit their Facebook page for more details. 


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