Travel Guide: The Diplomat Hotel in Baguio, Philippines

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I’ve already traveled to Baguio twice and have visited some of the tourists spots like the Burnham Park, Mines View Park, the Mansion, etc but I didn’t get the chance to visit the Diplomat Hotel. So last September, I’ve decided to take a trip back to Baguio and my mission is to explore one of the most haunted places here in the Philippines. 

TABLE OF CONTENTS

 

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The entrance of the Diplomat Hotel

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The facade

HISTORY

The Dominican Hill Retreat House also known as the Diplomat Hotel was built in 1913 on a hill with a panoramic view overlooking Baguio City. It was used as a safe haven for some Dominican Priest and Filipino refugees during the Japanese occupation in 1942-1945. In 1945, the Japanese secret police or the Kempeitai invaded the retreat house. In some accounts, it is said that they tortured and decapitated priests, nuns were raped then killed, refugees including children were also killed mercilessly. 

During the liberation of the Philippines in 1945, the Americans bombed the place and the surviving Japanese police and soldiers committed suicide rather than being caught alive.

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The corridor at the first floor and the stairs going to the second floor

In 1945-1947, the building undergone rehabilitation and wasn’t used for a long time until the new owners converted it into the Diplomat hotel in 1973. The hotel has 33 bedroom and kept most of the original designs intact.

In 1987, it was later shut down when the manager, a  faith healer and psychic surgeon named Antonio Agapito “Tony” Agpaoa suffered heart attack at the age of 42. The deserted, deteriorating building became infamous for being one of the most haunted locations in the country.

Some people claimed seeing headless apparitions at night, ghosts of children running around the fountain area, reported hearing screams, cries, banging on doors, and other strange & desperate noises. 

At the present, it has become a popular spot for ghost hunting, tours and even prenup photo shoots.

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Some rooms rooms at the second floor

TALK WITH THE SECURITY

I had a chitchat with one of the securities at the lobby. Asked if he experienced anything unusual during his shifts. 

He said, “Noong una, may mga naririnig akong yapak. Parang mga bata na nagtatakbuhan sa may fountain pero ngayon, wala na. Mukhang nasanay na rin ako.”

English: Before, I used to hear footsteps around the fountain area. It sounded as though there are kids running around but now, I don’t. Seems like I’ve gotten used to it.

travel-guide-baguio-the-diplomat-hotel-008The fountain – view from the second floor

MY EXPERIENCE

First of all, I really am not the right person to bring with you on ghost tours. Hahaha! If you watch Buzzfeed Unsolved and are familiar with Shane Madej – Yup, that’s me. I’m his female counterpart. I’ll even jumpscare you to the point of peeing your pants. I’m a horrible person, I know. 😂

Anyway…

I arrived at the Diplomat Hotel late and started exploring at around 4:15 PM. I am not a superstitious person and I do not believe in the paranormal. And it really takes A LOT to scare me. But I got to admit, I did felt a bit creep out, in fact, I kept whispering profanities while climbing to the second floor. In my defense, I was literally ALONE in the building. The last batch of tourists were already done with the tour and were about to leave (see first picture at the top). The cab driver that I hired politely declined when I asked him (he told me that I was his last passenger and didn’t want to bring whatever entity is in there back home) and the securities were at the lobby. In addition to that, it was slightly raining and the whole place was foggy – Sounds like a perfect recipe for a horror movie, right? 

travel-guide-baguio-the-diplomat-hotel-003the priest and nun cutout

I’ve explored from the lobby to the roof top. I’ve checked each rooms at the second floor and stopped for a bit – I was snacking down on Iced Gem Biscuits while I was there. Seems like they used some of the rooms for storage purposes, some smelled like pee. Some parts of the building showed signs of vandalism and I saw a few cigarette butts on the ground too. 

But once you get to the roof top, you’ll be rewarded by an amazingly panoramic view of the city.

I didn’t encounter anything scary during my visit there. No headless apparitions, didn’t see a White Lady or ghosts (not that I’m expecting it). I did have a mini heart attack after seeing the priest and nun cutout for the tourists. 

travel-guide-baguio-the-diplomat-hotel-004Second floor

FINAL THOUGHTS

For thrill-seekers and history enthusiasts, I highly recommend visiting the Diplomat Hotel when you go to Baguio. It does have a “creepy” vibe but if you’ll look past it (easier said than done lmao), I’m positive that you’ll have a lot of fun.  It’s location may be out of the way but it was worth it for its scenic view and above-average nostalgic feeling you get when you traverse the hotel grounds. It’d be super awesome to explore it with friends – also, you need someone to take your pictures so yeah… Drag your buddies with you!

If you’re the weird, romantic-type like myself, there’s a lovelocks fence behind the building. Be sure to bring your own padlock and key.

Guys please, do not leave trash or wrappers around the area. We need to preserve historical buildings like this better as we have so few of them still around.

travel-guide-baguio-the-diplomat-hotel-005Still at the second floor

HOW TO GET THERE

THE DIPLOMAT HOTEL
Address: Dominican Hill, Diplomat Road, Baguio, 2600 Benguet, Philippines
Hours: Daily 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Entrance Fee: Free

VIA JEEP
Ride a jeepney by taking the ones with Dominican-Mirador route. The terminal is at Kayang Street at the Baguio City Public Market. If you’re going to ride a jeepney, it is better to go to Diplomat Hotel first before riding a jeep to Lourdes Grotto.

VIA CAB
Would be helpful if you will just hired a taxi to bring you there and take you back to the city as it was a little bit hard to find a jeepney going back. Fare is around 150 pesos.

Do you enjoy exploring haunted places or would you consider visiting one? Did you find this travel guide helpful? Any tips that you’d like to add? Let me know by commenting below! 

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27 comments on “Travel Guide: The Diplomat Hotel in Baguio, Philippines”

  1. I absolutely do not like/love haunted houses which is why I do not visit nor do I ever have the intention of visiting. I still do not get the “thrill” people get from such.

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  2. I was looking to see some well-furnished rooms and an amazing setup until I saw that you were taking us on a ghost tour. Oh my! While I am a history seeker, I’m moving away from spooky and thrilling experiences. Coming to think of it, this hotel would make a good Halloween destination.

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  3. I try to keep myself away from all the doomed and spooky places when I’m traveling. The hotel does gives a creepy vibe but it would be great for the thrill-seeker!

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  4. Well I can tell you that the photos alone gave me a shiver. I’ve heard of this place but I can’t say I would ever find myself going for a visit to look around! Haha. Thanks for sharing, this was very cool!

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