Location is everything, and in a sprawling traffic-filled city like Manila, selecting the right location trumps selecting the right hotel. Fortunately, with the City of Dreams you get both. The City of Dreams is a 15-acres entertainment center that includes three hotels, upscale shopping, restaurants and bars, casino, and the DreamPlay entertainment center.
I stayed at the Hyatt City of Dreams, one of three hotels on the property. Whether you’re a guest at the hotel, or just visiting, expect to go through a security clearance to enter. All vehicles entering the property are met by a security dog who walks the perimeter of the vehicle, and security checks the undercarriage of all vehicles as well as looking in the trunk. Once at the hotel, all luggage must be put through a scanner, handbags must be opened and checked, and you must go through a metal detector.
The 365 room hotel is divided into two towers, separated by the marble lobby, cafe, bar, and casino. Guest rooms are spacious and decorated in muted earth tones of sage, maize, and wood tones, and even the entry level standard room has a couch (or chair set) and table, along with a desk/work station. Slippers by the bed, and a robe in the closet, help your lounging needs. One feature I appreciated was that the hangers were large and fat. Not a big deal you might think, but greatly appreciated when you’re trying to avoid creases and hanger bumps in lightweight business clothing.
In the standard room, the marble bathroom offers a walk-in shower only, no tub, bidet-style toilets, makeup/shaving mirror, and ample room for dressing. Ankle lighting in the bathroom serves as a nightlight for a room filled with the usual Hyatt branded amenities and fluffy towels.
Rooms have an electrical kettle and a nice assortment of teas, but coffee is instant as is the creamer. Wifi is free, in rooms as well as the common areas, although can be spotty. A club floor is available that offers additional amenties.
If you want to play during your stay, the casino is open to members only. It’s easy to join as a guest at the hotel, merely proceed to the guest services desk. The casino does enforce a dress code, no shorts and tees, and be prepared to have your handbags searched again. Backpacks and larger bags are not permitted.
A swimming pool and lounge area, along with a spa and fitness center are also on property. I didn’t have an opportunity to try them out. The hotel also offers a shuttle schedule t nearby shopping and business areas.
Despite being a casino property, the Hyatt and the City of Dreams is family friendly. A favorite with kids is DreamPlay, a family entertainment center featuring favorite DreamWorks animated characters. The kids can enjoy games and activities with those crazy Penguins of Madagascar, Shrek, and more.
Staying at the Hyatt City of Dreams gives you easy access to the rest of Manila. Well, at least as easy as the current traffic allows. There is a lot of construction going on around the city, and even nearby destinations can take a long time to get to. It’s about 2 miles to the airport, although I’d recommend allowing a half an hour to time, and about a 15 minute drive to the huge Mall of Asia, the largest retail complex in the Philippines, as well as 15 minutes to the convention center. The hotel makes a great location for business or leisure travel.
The Hyatt City of Dreams is located at Asean Avenue corner Roxas Boulevard, Entertainment City, Parañaque, Manila, Philippines. Rates start at about $170/night based on double occupancy. Try to look for a rate that includes breakfast, a sumptuous buffet at the Cafe. The buffet runs about $30 per person if not included, and there aren’t any other nearby breakfast options. Book directly online with the hotel or compare rates and make a reservation with either agoda.com or Hotelopia.