Where to Stay in Manila in 2024 – 6 TOP Areas & Hotels

Aerial view of Makati, the financial district of Manila, Philippines, showcasing modern skyscrapers, bustling streets, and green spaces in the late afternoon sun.

Looking for the greatest areas where to stay in Manila on your next trip? Fantastic!

I compared all the areas, organized them by categories, and hand-picked the best hotels for your stay. Basically, in this post you will find a list of top-rated hotels sorted by price and by area – this way you will be able to choose your ideal place in literally a couple of clicks!

Spoiler alert: The best area for first-timers is Makati. It is the safest area and the main tourist hub in Metro Manila. But hey, there are more areas and hotels for all tastes and budgets in this article!

Stay until the end to see the best hotels near Manila airport and quick city tips you should know before your trip.

All good hotels in Manila get booked pretty fast, so if you want to get good deals and stay in the best-rated hotels, you must book in advance!

Quick Picks for Your Stay

For those of you who have little time, here you have the best accommodation in Manila – all in the city center, with great reviews and sorted by price:


Watch my video, it will give you a visual explanation of all the areas:


Here you have a map with all the areas I will be talking about in this Metro Manila neighborhood guide:

Illustrative map of Manila highlighting the best areas to stay in, including Quezon City, Intramuros, Ermita, Malate, Makati, and Poblacion, with color-coded zones
  1. Where to stay for first-timersMakati, Intramuros and Quezon City 
  2. Where to stay for nightlifeQuezon City, Malate and Poblacion
  3. Where to stay by the waterMalate, Ermita and Intramuros
  4. Where to stay for world-class museumsErmita, Intramuros and Makati
  5. Where to stay on a budgetPoblacion and Malate
  6. Where to stay for familiesIntramuros, Makati and Quezon City

1. Makati – where to stay in Manila for first-timers

Street-level perspective of a tree-lined avenue in Makati, Manila, flanked by tall commercial buildings under a clear blue sky

Makati is the business center and one of the most beautiful places in Manila. It is the safest area in the city and the top option for first-time visitors. 

The district is HUGE and bustling with upscale shopping malls, unique modern architecture, cultural attractions, and deluxe restaurants where you can try traditional Philippine cuisine! 

Makati is also a great area where to stay for shopping, one of the most known shopping centers is Greenbelt Mall (map). 

The Greenbelt Mall is surrounded by greenery and features high-end brands and hundreds of restaurants where you can stop for a bite before continuing to discover the city! 

People’s Palace is one of the most popular in the area. The place is usually packed, so I suggest making reservations ahead so you can try it out! BTW their curries look incredible!

Did you know the area around Forbes Park is also known as the millionaires row? In this area, the wealthiest families, ex-pats, and diplomats live!

Just a few minutes walk from the mall, you can find the Ayala Museum, which I personally recommend! Here, you can learn about Philippine history and culture.

If, after shopping in all the malls and visiting museums, you crave some time in nature, visit the lovely Washington Sycip Park! Relax with a book or stroll amongst the beautiful wilderness.

P.S. If you are looking for the best view over the city, my favorite place for that is Firefly Roofdeck Restaurant (map) – bonus points if you go for sunset! 

PRO TIP: Bonifacio Global City, also known as BGC, is Makati’s neighboring area. Bonifacio Global City is as trendy, business, and modern as Makati, so if you find the accommodation you like in the area, book it!

Luxury hotel
A collage of three hotel photos for a premium stay in Manila: an elegant bathroom with a freestanding tub and cityscape views through floor-to-ceiling windows, a sophisticated bedroom featuring twilight city views and a cozy seating area, and a grand hotel lobby with a stunning light installation above floral arrangements and a sweeping staircase.

This centrally located luxury 5-star hotel is one of the best choices in Manila. The gym, spa, international restaurant, and outdoor pool on-site are just the beginning. Not only does Fairmont Makati offer great modern rooms, but they even have a pillow menu to ensure you have the best sleep possible during your stay.

Other accommodation options in Makati

Mid-range
Twilight at a rooftop lounge area with a pool, showcasing a panoramic view of Manila's skyline, elegant outdoor furniture, and ambient lighting

Deluxe hotel with a rooftop pool and the best value for money you’ll find

budget
Hotel room featuring a king-sized bed with a tan headboard, artwork above, and soft lighting

Relax by the rooftop pool and enjoy a traditional meal at the 2 onsite restaurants

airbnb
Bright, airy living room interior with modern furnishings, including a gray sofa, patterned chairs, a flat-screen TV

An airy apartment ideal for couples, located near Bonifacio Global

Things to do in Makati

2. Quezon City – the coolest place to stay for nightlife

Aerial view of a dense Manila neighborhood with mixed residential and commercial buildings, intersecting roads, and scattered greenery on a sunny day.

If Makati is big, Quezon City is HUMONGOUS. It is the Major city in Metro Manila, and apart from being great for historical attractions and nightlife, it has a unique local feel! 

This city is home to one of the most important universities in the country, UP Diliman, the reason why the area is filled with young people and hip hang out spots! PRO TIP: If you are fond of walking, the green lung surrounding UP Diliman is a great place for a relaxing stroll! 

FUN FACT: Quezon City was actually the capital of the Philippines for 28 years (from 1948 until 1976).

Did you know that Manila is the most densely populated city in the world?

One of the most emblematic historical sites in the area is Quezon Memorial Circle, dedicated to former president Manuel Luis Quezon. Don’t forget to check out the Liwasang Aurora Dancing Fountain when you’re there!

Visit Santo Domingo Church (map) during your trip! A beautiful modern catholic church that features a stunning courtyard. You will LOVE visiting this hidden gem and taking arty photos of it!

If you want to experience the local nightlife, I personally suggest you do an iconic Maginhawa food crawl along Maginhawa Avenue. You will try excellent food, and you will meet locals along the way!Another huge plus of the area is the wide range of unspoiled nature! One of the best places to visit is La Mesa Ecopark (map).

Luxury hotel
A collage of three hotel photos to stay in Manila: A stylish bedroom with a large  window and abstract wall art, a tranquil rooftop pool with city skyline views, and the hotel's modern façade under a clear blue sky.

What an incredibly relaxing place in Quezon City! Wake up to incredible views of Central Manila! It comes with an on-site gym and modern amenities that will make you feel like a star! Including an incredible swimming pool on the rooftop terrace! The complimentary breakfast will give you the energy to visit all the nearby attractions!

Other accommodation options in Quezon City

mid-range
Rooftop swimming pool at Novotel with palm trees and a clear blue sky

This modern hotel offers spacious rooms with air conditioning and all the amenities you need, including a rooftop pool!

budget
Bright twin bedroom with teal and orange bedding, modern lighting, and artwork on the walls

Cute budget accommodation offering all the basic amenities you need! The rooms come with private bathrooms and a view

airbnb
Modern, open-concept kitchen and dining space with clean white aesthetics, a marble countertop, and contemporary furniture

Bright, modern apartment with luxurious bathtub featuring a mounted TV. Great Airbnb for a staycation in Manila

Things to do in Quezon City 

  • Shop at the upscale Eastwood Mall before exploring its surrounding flea markets
  • Pose in front of 3D art with your family at Art in Island Museum
  • Check out the Manuel Quezon Memorial and Museum
  • Have some fun at the interactive Quezon City Experience
  • Enjoy the Ninoy Aquino Parks and Wildlife Center

3. Malate – where to stay by the water

Historic stone facade of the San Agustin Church in Manila, with intricate architectural details, under the shade of a large tree on a sunny day

Malate is definitely a great place for those who want to enjoy beautiful views, cheaper accommodations and super vibrant nightlife. This area is next to Ermita and Pasay, so you will be within walking distance of many great attractions!

This neighborhood is quite central and can reach most areas in around 30 minutes, and from Malate to Quezon City, it’ll take you 1 hour. So, if you are looking for a good place to stay for 2 nights, you will love the convenient location!

In Malate, you cannot miss going to Manila Bay Beach or visiting Our Lady of Remedies Parish Church (map), an imposing 16th-century church with revealing Baroque architecture. It will leave you speechless!

If you want something with a local vibe, the Museum of Contemporary Art and Design is perfect for you. This art museum showcases the art of De La Salle – College of Saint Benilde students. Don’t miss out and check out local artists!

FUN FACT: If you are wondering where ENHYPEN (a K-pop band) stayed in Manila, we have a clue they were roaming around Mall Asia during their stay in the city! 

The main nightlife hub in the area is Del Pilar Street in Malate, the area is filled with live music venues and bars. LOCAL TIP: this area is also known as the redlight district and sometimes it can get sketchy with people approaching tourists and offering them to buy things.

Below, you can find the best hotels near Manila Bay in Malate:

Luxury hotel
A collage of three hotel photos showcasing family-friendly luxury in Manila: A chic hotel lobby bar with contemporary seating, a spacious bedroom with sunset views, and the classic exterior of a grand hotel entrance.

Stay in a glamorous hotel! The property is located within walking distance of all the main historical sites and entertainment venues. It hosts theme nights for guests and comes with a fitness center and a spa offering yoga classes. The outdoor swimming pool looks dreamy! 

Other accommodation options in Malate

mid-range
Contemporary hotel room with two beds featuring the phrase 'There is no place like home' written on the wall.

Super trendy hotel with cool decor. Located steps away from all the main places to visit!

budget
Exterior view of Hotel Kimberly Manila, a tall building with balconies and a blue sky background

This great three-star hotel comes with everything you need for a great stay. Rooms are simple and comfortable!

airbnb
Compact modern studio with a bed, dining area, mounted TV displaying Netflix, and gray-toned decor

This cozy condo is the perfect place for a fun stay in Manila. It hosts 4 guests, and offers city views!

Things to do in Malate

  • Go for a walk at Manila Bay Beach
  • Listen to live music and have a drink at Cowboy Grill Mabini
  • Check out the unique Our Lady of Remedies Parish Church
  • Uncover local nightlife in Del Pilar Street

4. Ermita – where to stay for world-class museums

Sunset view of the National Museum of the Philippines with a lush green lawn in the foreground and a hazy city skyline in the background

Ermita is located next to Malate and Intramuros, right by Manila Bay! It offers a wide range of cultural attractions, a vibrant nightlife, and stunning waterfront views, including a beach area

Definitely, this area is quite ideal! It is between 2 major cool areas, and Ermita itself nestles amazing attractions! To start, for those who love strolling with a view, head to the beautiful Manila Baywalk Dolomite.

Rizal Park, without a doubt is the star of the show! It is great for those who want to spend time surrounded by nature and visit some of the best museums in the city. Some of the most iconic are the National Museum of Fine Arts and the National Museum of Anthropology. If you are traveling with kids, they will love going to the National Planetarium!

If you want to spend your days shopping, you will find anything and everything you need at Robinsons Place Manila (map). From the outside, this shopping center looks like a cool casino, inside, you can get from delicious cakes to trendy clothes!

Below, you can find the best hotels near Manila Bay:

Luxury hotel
A collage of three images for a romantic getaway in Manila: The towering New Coast Hotel's exterior with a reflection of the city, a serene bedroom with golden accents, and a picturesque outdoor pool surrounded by tropical greenery.

Stay in one of the most luxurious hotels in Manila, and have a fantastic vacation! This incredible hotel comes with a dreamy terrace with a swimming pool and jacuzzi! The rooms have deluxe amenities and floor-to-ceiling windows with city or ocean views. 

Other accommodation options in Ermita

Mid-range
Stylish urban apartment with a combined living and bedroom space, modern furniture, and city views

Simple, modern, and trendy! This cool hotel offers amazing value for money. All of Ermita’s attractions are just steps away!

budget
Hotel pool area with blue lounge chairs, a large swimming pool, and surrounding greenery

This hotel comes with a classic look! The outdoor pool looks refreshing and relaxing. Rooms host up to 4 guests

Airbnb
Elegant studio apartment with a comfortable bed, sitting area, large windows, and a city view

What a stunning condo! Enjoy everything Manila has to offer and relax in the privacy of your accommodation

Things to do in Ermita

5. Poblacion – where to stay on a budget

Exterior of Power Plant Mall with tall palm trees, flanked by modern high-rise buildings under a clear blue sky

Poblacion, also known as Burgos, is known to be the red light district of Manila and it is the best area to stay in Makati for budget travelers! 

The area is part of Makati and home to the coolest nightlife spots and the cheapest hostels, which is simply a great combo.

One of the most acclaimed bars and restaurants in the area is Filling Station Bar & Cafe. It has the most stunning interior. You will feel like you are in a 1950s museum. And it is open 24/7!

Like the rest of Makati, this area is filled with shopping malls. I recommend you stop by Power Plant Mall or Century City Mall. The 2 biggest ones in Poblacion!

During the nighttime, P. Burgos Street (the red light area) turns on its neon lights, and bars open. Giving a serious Blade Runner vibe! NOTE: Please be aware of scammers in the area; be safe!

Luxury hotel
A collage of three images for a full-home experience in Manila: A well-appointed bedroom with city views, a serene poolside setting with sun loungers, and the sleek, modern exterior of the Aruga Apartments.

This is the best hotel for a proper staycation! The property offers stunning apartments for a relaxing stay in Manila. You can choose from studios to 2-bedroom apartments, and select accommodation comes with a balcony! All the guests have access to the outdoor swimming pool and fitness center.

Other accommodation options in Poblacion

mid-range
City Garden Grand Hotel's rooftop pool at dusk with underwater lighting and a cityscape backdrop

Great hotel with an old-world vibe. The rooftop terrace comes with unbeatable views. Enjoy them by the pool with drinks

budget
Minimalistic hotel room with a large double bed adorned with two decorative pillows against a textured gray wall

Stay at the best-rated, cheapest hotel in Manila! Offers shared rooms and private rooms with a private bathroom

airbnb
Cozy living area with a blue sofa, round marble tables, green plants, and a large window offering a city view

Beautiful and trendy Airbnb with 360º views of Manila. The property can host 4 guests

Things to do in Poblacion

  • Have a coffee and a treat at the local café Commune (map)
  • Go shopping at Power Plant Mall
  • Learn about Philippine history at Makati Museum
  • Have a picnic at Ayala Triangles Gardens (map)

6. Intramuros – where to stay for families

Historic Manila Cathedral with a prominent bell tower and a statue in the foreground, framed by lush trees and a clear sky

Intramuros is the historic center of Manila. As its name suggests, this neighborhood is walled by a stunning fortification built in 1571.

The area is great for history buffs due to the great deal of historical landmarks you can find here, and for families, as it is one of the safest areas in the city!

Some of the most iconic attractions are in this district. One of them is Fort Santiago, built in the 15th century and used as a Spanish military base. It first was made of logs, and after a Chinese pirate attacked it the Spaniards rebuilt it in stone!

Did you know most of the historical landmarks inside Intramuros belong to the Spanish colonial era? This zone was the epicenter of Spanish colonial rule in Manila.

Another iconic landmark you cannot miss is the Manila Cathedral, which features Romanesque architecture. Remember to visit San Agustin Church, one of the oldest in the area, built in the 1600s! Visit its museums and gardens once you’re there!

Also, this area has a lot of cute places to visit in Manila for couples, with all the beautiful architecture and beautiful views from the walls!

Hotels in Intramuros are quite limited, so I added a few only a 5-minute walk away from the area:

Luxury hotel
A collage of three images from The Manila Hotel perfect for leisure travelers: A luxurious bedroom with elegant furnishings, a spacious living area with plush seating, and the hotel's historic white exterior with lush green gardens.

This 5-star property offers easy access to top tourist points of Intramuros and features a business center, spa, gym, outdoor pool, and pool bar, plus multiple restaurants serving Chinese, French, and other specialties. This hotel makes comfort an ultimate priority with high-class mattresses and other amenities and is one of the best places to stay in the city.

Other accommodation options in Intramuros

mid-range
Luxurious living room in a hotel suite with plush sofas, a glass coffee table, and panoramic city views at twilight

A premium location within the walled city with a rooftop bar and restaurant

budget
Front view of Casa Bocobo Hotel with a modern facade, flags above, and potted plants near the entrance

Clean, affordable hotel with onsite cafe and business center

airbnb
Simple bedroom with a double bed, black office chair, and a striped window shade in an urban apartment

Stay in a luxurious property steps away from all the main attractions. It comes with a pool and amazing views

Things to do in Intramuros 

  • Explore Fort Santiago, a Spanish relic
  • Check out San Agustin Church and its museum and courtyard gardens
  • See the neo-Romanesque masterpiece Manila Cathedral (map)
  • Relax in San Diego Gardens
  • Visit the Baluarte de San Diego
  • Explore the old tunnels of Puerta Real Gardens
👑 Luxury price:US$150
💵 Mid-range hotel:US$80
🛏️ Budget:US$30
📍 Best area:Makati
🛎️ Best luxury hotel:Fairmont Makati
🧳 Best mid-range hotel:Discovery Primea
👛 Best budget hotel:Holiday Inn

BONUS 1: Where to stay near Manila airport

Entrance of Ninoy Aquino International Airport with vehicles parked in front, under a bright sky.

If you’re looking for hotels in Manila near the airport, I’ve got you, fam! 

Ninoy Aquino International Airport is located in Pasay, so if you want to stay near the airport to catch an early flight, you should stay in the area. 

But something cool about Pasay is that it has a lot to offer. So, even if you are staying in Manila for a longer period, Pasay could be the perfect area for you! 

This neighborhood is super safe; it is located by Manila Bay, and it nestles quite a BIG amount of fun amusement parks and cool shopping centers. It would be perfect for families or groups of friends!

One of the best ones in the area is SM Mall of Asia. It nestles a cinema, thousands of stores, AND also features an amusement park SM by the Bay! Get on the Ferris wheel and enjoy the views!

Nearby, you have the super cute Dessert Museum. It is the loveliest thing I’ve seen; everything looks so adorable and delicious! Families with kids will love to experience the exhibitions and sample sweets!

If, after all this fun, you are still in need of another adrenaline rush, head to Star City, another amusement park with the craziest rides! People of all ages will love it!

PRO TIP: If you find accommodation in Parañaque or Taguig, book it without a doubt since these areas are super close to the airport!

Here is a list of airport hotels:

  • Luxury (from US$150 and up): City Of Dreams – Nüwa Manila – If you want to have a royal one-night stay, this hotel will deliver! The property’s luxurious style will charm you and make you feel at ease! Relax in the sauna the night before catching your flight, and opt for the paid shuttle service to the airport!
  • Mid-Range (from US$80 to US$150): Savoy Hotel Manila – This hotel is located literally steps away from the airport! The hotel comes with a spa center and an outdoor swimming pool, which is open all year round! There is a paid shuttle service in case you want to take a quick look at the city before you leave!
  • Budget (up to US$70): Cozy and Classy Studio – Great option where to stay in Manila for 1 night! If you want something more private, this cute studio is perfect for you! The decor is delightful, and you will feel right at home! It offers streaming services and 2 outdoor pools. Located only a 15-minute walk from the airport.

BONUS 2: Things to know before visiting Manila

Sunny view of Roxas Boulevard in Manila, with palm trees lining the bay walk, against a backdrop of high-rise buildings and a clear sky

Traffic

When planning where to stay in Manila, include traffic among the main deciding factors. The city is notorious for its road congestion and overcrowding in trains and buses. As a consequence, many locals spend hours commuting from home to work during the worst of days. Make sure to remember that getting anywhere by car will take longer than you think! 

Manila is also home to cheap and unique transportation, the pedicab, but it is recommended only to take it if you are traveling with a local.

Airport Transportation

Many tourists visiting the capital of the Philippines find transfers from the airport to their lodgings complicated. Hence, try reserving a hotel with a shuttle service if you are coming to Manila for the first time. It will save you time and money as well as provide you with a stress-free introduction to the Philippines. 

Where NOT to Stay

Although the areas that I have discussed in this post are among the safest places in the city, there are areas you should avoid. Avoid areas around Navotas, Tondo, Baclaran, and other areas with high numbers of squatters and/or poorly lit streets. Generally, these areas are far away from the tourist sights, so if you stay close to the areas I talked about, you should be okay. 

Pickpockets 

When in Manila be aware of pickpocketing since they are quite common there. Avoid wearing jewelry and carrying expensive belongings in bags whilst roaming the streets, as they are very easily stolen. A common scam to be wary of is long conversations with strangers on the street. The scammer’s friend can easily be searching through your personal things whilst you’re distracted. Pickpockets are particularly common on the metro, so hold your bags in front and be alert at all times. 

Walking at Night

Try to avoid walking the streets at night. Take a taxi instead. Taxis are very affordable in the Philippines and will get you to and from your destination in the safest way possible. Usually, it won’t cost more than P150 ($3.50) for a 20-minute trip, and you can either hail them on the street or book a ride on the Grab app. If you really do have to walk, avoid dimly lit streets and alleyways.

FAQs about where to stay in Manila

Vibrant and bustling street scene at the entrance of Manila's Chinatown with colorful arches and traditional jeepneys

🧳 Where do tourists stay in Manila?

Most tourists stay in Makati since it is the most westernized part of the city. You will find big hotel chains and large shopping malls in this area, as well as other tourist attractions. 

🇵🇭 Where is the best place to stay in the Philippines?

Everyone should see Metro Manila during their stay. But if you need some inspiration, check out our comprehensive guide to the top areas in the Philippines!

🏙️ What is the city center of Manila?

Manila doesn’t really have a city center as it is so big that it has many smaller cities inside it. Intramuros is the old capital and is a walled city with lots of history. Alternatively, Makati is the modern center of business.

🕺 Where should I stay in Manila for nightlife?

Quezon City is the best area for nightlife! It is filled with trendy bars and cool restaurants. Some of the best areas for nightlife there are Maginhawa Avenue and Eastwood.

🚫 What are places to avoid in Manila?

One area to avoid in Manila is Tondo, a city slum. Other no-go areas are Navota and Baclaran. Don’t walk on dark, empty streets, and be aware of people offering things to you on the streets and the usual tourist scams.

🏊 Where is the best place to stay in Manila with a pool?

Lucky you, Manila has a wide range of hotels with refreshing pools. Some great options are Seda Vertis North and Fairmont Makati.

🗓️ How many days do you need to explore Manila?

Well, I would recommend you stay at least 5 days. Metro Manila is super big and consists of so many other cities, so if you want to explore, you will need at least 5 days.

🥘 Where is the best street food in Manila?

If you want to try the best street food in Manila, head to Quezon City. The area is known to be a foodie hub, and Maginhawa Avenue is its main character for food hopping!

Conclusion

Tranquil twilight scene at Manila Bay with moored sailboats and a silhouette of the city skyline reflecting on calm waters

That is a wrap for today, my sweet angels! Those were the best places where to stay in Manila!

Honestly, all the hotels mentioned in this article are top-tier, but if I had to choose my 2 favorites, I would go with:

  • Fairmont Makati – with world-class facilities and a focus on comfort in a central location, near tourist places. 
  • Holiday Inn – another great option in Makati, perfect for those looking for a long or short-time hotel in Manila.

Keep in mind hotels in Manila get booked super fast, so it is essential you book your hotel room in advance to avoid those last-minute booking issues!

Which of the areas and tourist attractions in Metro Manila was your favorite? Let me know in the comments!

Kate


Pin it for later!

Where to stay in Manila pin 1

Pin it for later!

Where to stay in Manila pin 4

Disclaimer: Please note that some of the links on this page might be affiliate links, which means that at absolutely no extra cost for you we will earn a small commission for a sale generated through the website. We only recommend the things we actually use ourselves and never accept useless sponsored crap. Thank you so much for supporting this project!

Leave a comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Follow @misstourist on Instagram!