While Cebu is home to plenty of beautiful islands, Sumilon Island’s elusive charm makes it one of the must-visit island destinations in the country.
There are two ways to get there. The three-hour drive from Cebu City down to the municipality of Oslob plus a 15-minute banca ride is known as the long way.
But if you're coming from Manila, it only takes a 45-minute flight to Dumaguete and a 30-minute boat ride before you can bury your toes into Sumilon Island’s famous shifting sandbar. Whichever way you choose, the destination is definitely worth the journey.
Ever since they opened in 2005, Bluewater Sumilon Island Resort has been the only establishment on the island. Upholding Sumilon Island’s storied past and status as the Philippines’ first marine reserve, Bluewater Resorts opted to develop only 20% of this 24-hectare coral island.
The island’s preserved historical integrity and natural beauty, combined with the resort’s native-inspired architecture, five-star amenities, and heartfelt service standard to the Bluewater Resorts brand, all make Bluewater Sumilon Island Resort the ultimate getaway.
From the docks, it’s a short walk to the Pavilion. This area serves as the resort’s front desk and concierge area. A small library and gift shop can be found here too.
Until recently, the Pavilion also doubled as Bluewater Sumilon’s de facto restaurant, allowing guests to partake in hearty Filipino favorites while enjoying sweeping views of the sea and mainland Cebu.
The resort recently opened a second restaurant named Pulo to accommodate the increasing number of day guests. Pulo offers an impressive buffet spread for lunch and themed nights for their dinner selections.
Pulo is walking distance to yet another recent addition: a second swimming pool with kid-friendly depths.
The resort’s iconic infinity pool, which is located right beside the Pavilion, is seven feet at its deepest—although the hot tubs located on each side of the pool offer just the same majestic views.
Near the new swimming pool is the gorgeous natural lagoon. It is where guests can enjoy kayaking, paddling, and fishing.
The payag-payags (huts) is where you can take a break when swimming at the pool or the sea. With Sumilon also being a marine sanctuary, its vibrant underwater life makes it a perfect diving spot both for beginners and experienced divers. Those who want to snorkel will delight in the bountiful and vibrant corals that surround the island.
Located on the other side of the island is one of Sumilon Island's landmarks, the shifting sandbar, which is only a five-minute walk away. Along the way are three nature trails of varying difficulties. All converge at the island’s baluarte, a historical watchtower built in the 19th century.
While the sandbar emerges during low tide, it also serves as an alternative dock when the waters are particularly challenging.
The resort offers 14 deluxe and 10 premier deluxe rooms, all of which have private verandas offering scenic views of the sea and mainland Cebu.
On the opposite end are the high-end villas—a one-bedroom suite and a family villa that each have their private dipping pools. These also have the unique vantage point to witness beautiful sunrises.
All the rooms are awash in neutral colors with native and wooden decorative elements, while accents of Bluewater Resorts’ signature blue add just the right amount of color.
Along with modern amenities such as minibars, cable TVs, telephones, hot and cold showers, coffee and tea services, as well as bathtubs and Netflix-ready TV sets for the villas, Bluewater Sumilon strikes the right balance of being a tropical getaway with everything anyone could ever need.
Rounding out the Bluewater Sumilon Island Resort experience is Amuma Spa. After all, who could resist getting pampered in an island paradise? Amuma takes pride in a farm-to-spa experience, offering treatments that pay tribute to Philippine heritage using local, fresh, and natural ingredients.
Their signature treatments include the Hilot Lamang, or the ‘traditional mystical massage of the islands’, which also involve prayer and meditation for a relaxing experience; and the Pikpik Kawayan sa Siki, a foot care treatment that utilizes bamboo poles to apply pressure to stress points.
With Bluewater Sumilon and Sumilon Island itself having so much to offer, anyone would be hard-pressed to leave. Two hours is nothing compared to all the time in the world you’d want to stay. And that makes Sumilon Island worth the trip.
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