Accommodations dumaguete series

8 Reasons You Should Stay at Harold's Mansion

Monday, February 20, 2012Ryan Mach

Harold's Mansion is a backpackers' hostel located at the heart of Dumaguete City in Negros Oriental. There are several reasons you should stay here when you travel to the City of Gentle People:

1. Great location. Situated right beside the busy stretch of Hibbard Avenue, Harold's Mansion is a 5-minute walk away from Silliman University, the town plaza, Rizal Boulevard and various restaurants. There are a lot of tricycles passing by so going anywhere in the city is easier.

2. Great social feel. Themed nights and social activities are done to encourage a good social atmosphere among travelers staying at the guesthouse. Grill night happens every Wednesday (the staff organize a trip to the local market to buy your food of choice) and Oyster night occurs on Fridays (free oysters for all - no catch!). Both are great social occasions to meet other backpackers/travelers (70-80% of the guests are foreigners - Canadian, German, etc).

3. Free Wifi connection and free Internet use. Wifi connection in some areas of the hostel can be poor but it's quite fast in the cafeteria and the lobby downstairs. Occupants can avail their free 30-minute use of the computer everyday at the second floor. There are just two desktops available though, so you may need to be patient and wait for your turn in case there are a lot of users.

4. They serve good jam - banana and jackfruit. They're home-made jelly perfect for your morning toast.
5. Free breakfast. Unlimited coffee, tea (from 6:30am to 10pm) and bread (from 6:30am to 10am) .
6. Friendly staff (all girls). I was worried about the treatment I'd be getting from the hostel personnel because I read from a blog review how Filipinos were discriminated against. I didn't feel any discrimination at all. They treat each guest fairly. They're polite and friendly people. They also have a lot of local knowledge which they willingly share (if you ask).
7. Safe. Free lockers and safety deposit boxes are available at the lobby if you want to leave your valuables while you're out. Not sure if guests deposit any of their important belongings there, they'd rather leave their stuff on their bed at the guestroom. It made me worry at first - cameras, iPods, gadgets were splayed on the floor. What are these foreigners thinking, leaving gadgets inside the room when anybody can get them stealthily? They're an easy target for potential thieves but I haven't heard anyone's thing getting stolen.

8. Cheap accommodation rates. It's an ideal hostel option for backpackers rate-wise. For as cheap as 350 per day for a dorm-type room, you can save grand on accommodation expenses. Just because it's cheap doesn't mean the rooms stink. Quite the contrary. Each room is regularly cleaned, bed sheets are changed everyday. Dorm-type rooms have wall fans and an air conditioner,  which is only switched on from 8pm to 8am. Rooms are also complete with hot and cold showers, and have a small balcony overlooking the street.

About the Hostel
Harold's Mansion is owned and managed by Harold Biglete, a local from Dumaguete City where he's lived for the past 35 years of his life. He opened up Harold's Mansion to public way back in November 25, 1997, with only 6 rooms. More rooms were added years later - suites, double, single and dormitory types accommodations. It now has 38 rooms in total.
Colorful hallway

About the Owner
Harold is traveler himself. He has been to most Asian countries and 21 states of the US so he has a good idea what budget travelers want. He tries to keep the hostel green as much as he can - advising guests to turn off air conditioners and fans when they're out, serving home-made jams and jellies, among others.
You can read what I think about Harold here.

-Book your room in advance. It's a famous backpackers' guesthouse in Dumaguete so it's always full.
-Harolds Mansion offers Diving and Snorkeling tours to world's famous Apo Island. Snorkeling costs Php1,000.00 while diving costs Php3,300.00 inclusive of transfer, diving gears and lunch. For complete information about the tours they're offering, go here. has seating for marlins ballpark tickets and seating charts plus citi field tickets and citizens bank park tickets and events.

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