Sofitel Manila

Just great virtual tour of a 5 star hotel in Manila!

A screen shot of the sites's virtual tour of a room

Sofitel Philippine Plaza, a five star hotel in Manila has a new website. 

It was as if I was exactly inside the room of a five star hotel in Manila, admiring the lines and inviting colors, well appointed lighting. I would have touched and felt the comfiness of the sprawling bed but just can’t as it was all a virtual tour. But it stoked my curiosity more.

Sofitel Philippine Plaza, a five star luxury hotel in Manila located at the edge of the CCP Complex, bringing French elegance to the country, has a spanking new website that is quite impressive. Perhaps better than the other websites of other luxury hotel in Manila. I like its layout, ease of use and easy navigation that makes it a pleasant experience.

Sofitel Philippine Plaza's spanking new website. CLICK TO ENLARGE

But the best part that I really like love? It’s the virtual tour!

And what is that? A virtual tour simply utilizes 360 degree panoramic photography that is specifically stitched together and set up, gives you the capability of being there, virtually. It is also called VR Photography.

Just move your mouse around near the edges of the screen and the virtual space moves up, down, left and right. With the navigator, one can also zoom in and out. In effect, you see the whole room, unlike most hotel websites where what you are presented with are just static images. It can be dizzying at first, especially if the movement is fast but just within a minute or two, you can navigate around it at your own pace.

There’s no guessing or be surprised (disappointed?) when actually being there as one can really see, anywhere in the world as long as one has an internet connection, how the space really looks. And Sofitel Philippine Plaza’s virtual tour isn’t only limited to their rooms. All spaces: restaurants, Le Spa, the pool area are there.

Virtual tour of Snaps Sports Bar

Sofitel Philippine Plaza’s new website also have a couple of surprises. Other than the ease of booking a room, one can even book or arrange appointments for spa services, restaurant reservations, view the menu of services and food as well as reserve events. The site’s social media links are also well situated giving one an opportunity to connect with the site and get updated via Twitter, Facebook or Youtube.

My only complain? Just two: the videos were not as good as I expected. It lost its sharpness. When I browsed the site using Google Chrome, the virtual tour was not loading and was stuck at 0%. I’m not sure if I need to install a plugin but there wasn’t any notification of it. Firefox was okay.

Now, experience a 5 star luxury hotel in Manila, the Sofitel Philippine Plaza’s new website and judge for yourself. Visit www.sofitelmanila.com.

Estan Cabigas is freelance photographer, blogger and writer based in Makati City, the Philippines. A true blue Cebuano, he makes stunning images and meaningful photo stories. His work has been published in local and international publications including National Geographic Magazine, Geo (Germany), Sunday Times Magazine (London) and other publications. He is also a peripatetic traveler and has traveled to all 81 Philippines provinces. I'm open for work, collaborations and inquiries, including hotel, restaurant and site features and reviews.

2 Comments

  1. Mitch
    April 28, 2012 @ 12:15

    I’ve been to Sofitel many times because of my previous work. But I never get a chance to see the whole place, I mean the room itself. But this is something new.. and wanna try again their buffet Spiral!

  2. estancabigas
    May 2, 2012 @ 23:16

    Hi Mitch, I’m also excited with Sofitel. As for Spiral, they are currently renovating it. I think June’s the expected opening date, a bigger Spiral is in store.

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