Im trying to be objective about this. After all, no one forced me to stay here. Manila is really expensive anyway. If you find yourself if Bangkok, there might not be a shortage of cheap and decent accomodation. Or even in KL. But Manila has always been a challenge for me. Cheap and decent do not always go hand in hand. You either always get one or the other. Almost never both. Or maybe I'm just lousy at finding cheap and decent places to stay in Manila.
There are only a couple of reasons why you might find yourself staying in Sogo Recto. Either you are based in the province and you don't want to bother your friends or relatives for a one or two nights stay in the city just to take a four or five hour exam in one of the universities around the area. Or, you are based in Manila and it rains really hard and you cant go home as the streets are flooded and you are too sleepy to be bothered to paddle your way home.
I needed to take an exam. It was the nearest hotel I could find and book online. I paid $74 sgd for 2 nights. Hotel wouldnt allow me to cancel the other night as I booked through agoda. I could get 3 nights in Bangkok for that rate, and I will even get a room with a window. I didn't have a window here. It was basically a box. A box!
So you can check in anytime. When you are ready, just go. I guess they will be counting your hours from then. They give you one key which you would need to surrender everytime you need to leave and then they will always be asking you if you are already checking out. Even if you just checked in and you only need to get lunch outside, they have already forgotten you and they will already be asking you if you are already checking out!
The room is small. One double bed, thin bad mattress, thin bad pillows. The airconditioning is louder than a bus or train station. Im not kidding. That's room 346 for you. The hot water in the shower works so unreliably that you either get frost bitten or scorched. Plus it doesn't drain quickly, so you will be flooded as well. Oh and that room, 346, the toilet wobbles. I mean you will be rocking left and right while trying to take care of business. Try not to move too much. Concentrate. At least the bidet works, most of the time. Lastly, curse this room but I always had to lift the cover of the water tank so I can flush. Dang, only now do I realize that room is a disaster.
They reuse room slippers, if you are squeamish, bring and use your own. Housekeeping must have been round the clock. The boys were courteous, always greeting you with a smile. The counter lady was more high browed, and no I dont owe her a cent or a date. I thought a smile came with that sort of job.
I finished the exam on that day. Went back to the hotel and rested til evening then checked out.