The Grand L Square Hotel and Residences: A Hotel Review

Saturday, May 10, 2014
I was never really the backpacker type. So when my husband, Kel, and I decided to register the Mabuhay Pilipinas Cycling League's duathlon relay (no, I was rather dragged. Haha!) in the, my urgent question was: "Where do we stay?". He knew I was persnickety when it comes to staying in hotels. I can seem to sleep and bathe well in even the slightest unkempt rooms.

Our less than 24 hour-stay was spent in The Grand L Square Hotel and Residences located in San Rafael, Tarlac City. The hotel is a good 10-minute drive to Hacienda Luisita and just good because our race starts early the following day.

The parking area is located just in front of the hotel. Not too many vehicles parks at the same time so parking was never a trouble for us. It's along the highway, though, so it's pretty like parking at your very own risk.  

As we came in, we were ushered by their friendly attendants who greeted us all the way to the information desk. The lounge is small yet welcoming. Our check-in was fast and organized.  Since, we already had our reservation prior to coming, we were immediately given our room keys and stubs for complimentary welcome drinks and breakfast buffet.

Our room is a Zen-themed superior double room furnished with a queen-sized bed, a pair of couch and a small living room table. The room, although a bit modest, was equipped with conveniences just right for the price we paid. As for the air-conditioning, the thermostat was a little bit warm in our room even if it was set at maximum. I think they need to fix this because the weather's definitely hot these days.

A cable LCD TV was installed above the dresser horizontally to our bed, which is definitely a score for me. There's also a tea and coffee maker provided for guests.

Wifi has a bad signal in our room. There are only specific corners where we can have a connection. But the signal in their lounge and cafe is good and browsing is fast.
Although a bit small and except for the few stains on the bathroom tiles, the rest of the bath was kept neat. I noticed, however, that the water was kept warm at all times -- there's no cold water! Of course, I would prefer the warm water when taking a bath but I would have liked it better when there's available cold water especially when I'm washing my face.

The interior also looks nice to me. I liked these blinds because it gives you the impression that the lines are embossed but they are just 2 thin materials placed over each other. See, you can just pull the one on top so there can be space in between if you want the light from outside to reach the room.

After leaving our things in the room, we went to the A lounge at the 4th floor to claim our welcome drinks. Note: The hotel has no elevator so you'll need to take the stairs. Doesn't matter though, 'coz exercise is good for your heart and you'll love the rooftop when you get there. 

There were few choices on their menu but only two (2) drinks were available that time. I was a bit saddened because I would have loved to taste their Mojito for the night but then, we settled for these cocktails. Although full from our dinner, I felt that we need to taste at least 1 of their appetizers so we ordered their cheesesticks. It's really cheese from inside and out. Loved it! After a few minutes of stay, we left and called the night off.

We left a bit early the following morning for the race and came back just in time before their free breakfast buffet time ends, which is at 10:00 am. To my dismay, the serving plates were almost empty but it was a relief that they were willing to cook available viands for us but of course, we need to wait. We were served with bread and butter and their signature tapa dish on our own table in 10 minutes, not bad.  

For a small breakfast buffet, the menu during that morning includes buttered garlic rice, scrambled egg, fried bangus, chicken tinola and tapa. They also served bread with jam and for drinks, you can choose between juice and coffee. They did not serve us any dessert, though.


The hotel also houses a business center, currency exchange, hair/beauty salon and a small gym. Sadly, I was not able to take pictures of them since we were too tired after the race and took a quick nap before leaving instead. But it will be nice for you guys to know that they have these facilities just in case you soon need a place to stay in Tarlac City.

So here's my final verdict on our overnight stay:

Value for money:  3/5
Location:  4/5
Sleep quality: 4/5
Staff performance:  5/5
Hotel cleanliness:  3/5
Food/dining:  3/5

Finding a place to stay in the provinces is a bit challenging sometimes especially when you're running on a tight budget, but I'm happy to chance upon The Grand L Square hotel for a comfortable 17-hour stay.

The Grand L Square and Residences
Km. 120 Mc Arthur Highway
San Rafael, Tarlac, Luzon
(045) 491 0714/ (045) 491 0710


  1. me want all desserts! hehe

  1. wow ang ganda ng place love it

  1. Eddielli said...:

    The hotel is just okay. Not good and not bad either! Although I still like it to think that it is hard to find a place at the province

  1. Mona Verdida said...:

    Wow, I really envy you, guys, for participating in sports activities. Me and my hubby don't have the time for it na kasi. As for the hotel, it looked quite decent and a nice place to stay in. Sayang lang hindi nyo nasulit yung stay nyo kasi less 17 hours lang ang stay nyo.

  1. Hi Mona! I myself is finding it hard to look for time to run as well. Napipilit lang talaga. Hehe. :)

  1. good place and convenient to relax

  1. Elie Udasco said...:

    I love reading blogs about hotel staycation. How I wish I have budgets for this so that we can have a relaxing staycation like this..

  1. EmCel Fajardo said...:

    great staycation to unwind and have a relaxation time with family

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