Friday, August 22, 2014

Side Views: An Elegant Fusion of History and Art at Vigan's Hotel Luna

History and art combine in one of the most elegant structures in historic Vigan. An attraction in itself, and a majestic gateway to the rich cultural heritage of one the best preserved Hispanic districts in the country. When visiting Vigan, complete your experience with a stay at the stately and refined Hotel Luna, the first museum hotel in the country. There's no better place to stay in Vigan than at the elegant Hotel Luna... 

Hotel Luna is located in the central district of historic Vigan, a UNESCO World Heritage site, right beside the famed cobblestone street of Calle Crisologo. Built on the original two-storey structure of Don Jose Florentino's ancestral home completed back in 1882, Hotel Luna is an elegant blend of old and new, masterfully preserved in a fusion of European and Oriental architecture. 

The classic lines of Hispanic design, with an impressive base built from stone and brick, contrasts with the intricate wood and capiz shell windows for that elegant old world charm. Like a grand dame garbed in impeccable white silk, the Hotel Luna is definitely the prettiest lady on the block. Lured by the charm of Hotel Luna, one is drawn in to discover more of Hotel Luna's many features. 

Named after the acclaimed Filipino painter, Juan Luna, Hotel Luna also boasts an impressive collection of art from various national artists, including Luna, Amorsolo, Manansala, Malang, Abueva, and Orlina, as well as local and contemporary artists. The vast collection of art is not only confined to the hotel's special museum, but proudly displayed around the hotel, blending art and function adding to the charm and elegance of Hotel Luna. 

Inside Hotel Luna, the magnificent brick arch welcomes you and immediately transport you back in time. Real old world elegance sets Hotel Luna apart, as you are warmly greeted by the staff. Just look for Krissy and Joni to attend to your needs. 

At the elegant lobby, don't forget to look up. In a masterful blend of art and function, celebrated artist Mulawin Abueva's sculpture dramatically illuminates the lobby with its soft haze. And that's just one of the many art pieces in Hotel Luna's impressive collection (for more on Hotel Luna's art collection, check out my next post here at

All around Hotel Luna, the intricate details add special touches to the overall charm of the hotel, including the detailed and ornate wrought iron railings on the balcony of each floor, highlighted by copper ornaments. Brick walls and plants complete the old world charm of Hotel Luna. 
Hotel Luna's dining outlets offer the best of Filipino, Ilocano, Spanish, and continental cuisine, with the formal and elegant Comedor (L) and the  more casual and cozy Chula Saloon Bar (R) with a well stocked bar matched with a wide range of tasty bar chow. With Chef Robby Goco at the helm, good food is guaranteed. Every day. 

The Hotel Luna has 54 well-appointed rooms and suites, each with intricately designed border and ceiling details reminiscent of old Spanish era mansions, combining classic details and modern amenities to make your stay memorable. Each room is equipped with comfortable orthopedic beds, IR Electronic Lockset Systems, Flat Screen LED TV, Cable TV, NDD/IDD Telephone units, Safety Deposit Box, and a mini-ref. Options range from Hotel Luna's Queen Standard Room, to the Deluxe Room, Double Queen Deluxe Room, the spacious Loft Suite, and the grand Executive Suite. 

From my Queen Standard Room on the third floor, the view down the hotel pool is quite a sight, just perfect to start the day at Hotel Luna.

Hotel Luna's Azotea Roofdeck Lounge is just the place for a few drinks while the sun sets. Wide and spacious, in crisp white adorned with an assortment of plants for that cool vibe, perfect as you chug down a cold beer or a steaming hot cup of brewed coffee.

It was raining the day I arrived, but Hotel Luna's Azotea Roofdeck Lounge still looked quite impressive, large enough to accommodate 300 guests. Now that's a party. 

Panoramic views of Vigan's historic red-tiled roofs on one side, and dramatic mountains swept by low clouds on the other, all amazing sights. During my stay, I made it a point to visit the Azotea at least twice, early in the morning and then the evening, just to experience Hotel Luna's changing colors.

The view down from the Azotea is equally dramatic, giving one a wider perspective on the unique European style architecture of Hotel Luna. In fact, one feels transported back in time, or to another place somewhere in Europe. And that's what makes Hotel Luna special. 

A bronze bust of the national artist, Juan Luna, is displayed proudly at the open patio, a tribute to one of the brightest sons of Ilocos and the inspiration behind the name and character of the hotel.  

As you sit back on one of the lounge chairs, the hotel's many other other tiny and intricate details complete your experience. Like the serene bonsai plant by the pool, and the ornate details of the glass elevator that adds an old world charm to the modern and contemporary all-glass structure. 

As you head to the far side of the pool, one can appreciate the architecture of Hotel Luna, preserving the classic elegance of Spanish colonial design infused with the dramatic clean lines of modern architecture, combining old world materials like stone and brick with glass and stainless steel. And every morning, this sight never fails to awe and inspire. And it's like that at Hotel Luna. Every day...

The detailed mural created by local artist Rene Robles, a visually stunning representation of the city of Vigan, contrasts with the equally stunning glass structure of Hotel Luna in yet another blend of modern architecture and art. With its impressive art collection, it's just appropriate that the hotel itself is, in fact, a piece of art.

Looking up once more, the all-glass structure is a dramatic and  imposing presence, yet there is a sense of grace and elegance that perfectly balances the hotel's overall look and vibe.  

At night, Hotel Luna transforms, showing yet another facet to her elegant architecture, draped in light. And despite the rain, Hotel Luna remains an inspiring sight. 

While at the Hotel Luna, make sure to visit the famed cobblestone streets of Calle Crisologo, lined by antique stores and colonial ancestral homes. It's just a short walk around the corner. Or you can do it the Hotel Luna way, with their very own horse-drawn carriage (for more on the historic Calle Crisologo, check out my post here at

The classic architecture, the impressive art collection, the sumptuous food, and the friendly staff at Hotel Luna truly sets it apart, and no authentic Vigan experience is complete without staying at the elegant Hotel Luna. My home in Vigan for two nights and three days, she is definitely quite a lady...and the prettiest on the block. 

For more on Hotel Luna and its impressive art collection, check out my post here at

Hotel Luna is located at V. De Los Reyes corner General Luna Street, Vigan City, Ilocos Sur or call +632-584-4945 for inquiries and reservations. You may also contact the Manila Sales Office located at 26 Tomas Morato Extension, Brgy. South Triangle, Quezon City or call +632-373-3333 local 201-204 or email

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