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Travel Guide to Mateo Hot & Cold Springs in Monbon, Irosin, Sorsogon

Irosin, Sorsogon, Philippines
san benon hot and cold spring resort irosin

Irosin is a landlocked municipality in the province of Sorsogon. We grew up having unforgettable memories in lakes, rivers and of course hot springs. In fact, I first learned to swim in one of the oldest resorts here in Monbon, Irosin called Mateo Hot and Cold Springs. The last time I have seen this resort was 6 years ago that's why it was such a nice feeling to come back. It was like I felt the kid in me. Knowing that this hot spring in Irosin is famous, we planned to visit on a week day but most of us have work to do so we ended up visiting on a Sunday morning. 

UPDATE. Click HERE to view my 2023 San Benon Mateo Hot and Cold Spring Resort Entrance Fees blog post.

I and sister went ahead because we wanted to check out some nice spots inside the resort where we can do our #ChippyKadaBucket photo challenge. We left around 9am while mom and the rest are busy cooking food to be eaten inside this resort. Within 20 minutes of sitting inside the tricycle, we found ourselves being dropped in the other side of the road facing the public elementary school of Monbon. We were left with two options: pay another 20 pesos so the driver can bring us all the way to Mateo Hot and Cold Springs or walk which will take us another 20 - 30 minutes. We wanted to reach the resort sooner but we decided to walk instead because we were thinking we may still find some Instagrammable spots that we can have our pictures taken. Little did we know that we're going to regret it because the loads of the backpack and duffel bag we were carrying are getting heavier! 

mateo hot and cold spring resort irosin sorsogon

On the way, I was surprised to see  newly-built resorts that I have never heard of: Tropical Hot Spring Paradise Resort, Vida Guest Resort, Nature Hot Spring Resort and Inn et cetera. You know what, this old soul stil prefers the resort where she's got lots of great childhood memories that's why she's coming back to San Benon's hot spring.

The overall look of Mateo Hot and Cold Springs never changed except the main entrance from the nearby BLISS road and also the entry point for Hacienda Mateo where this springs is located has been developed immensely. It says it is now owned and operated by ARAMARU Resort Corporation, not by the Mateo family anymore. There's also a guard on duty already. From here the resort is just 10-15 minutes away by walking.  The resort has changed tremendously. There's another guide in the booth where the guests must pay entrance fees and cottages. This is a big shock to me upon knowing that whether you get a cottage or not, you have to pay the entrance fees.  In other parts of the country, if you pay for the cottage, the entrance fee is waived by resorts. Here in Irosin, it is not the case. 

irosin hot springs in monbon

As soon as we showed our receipt to the guard, we walked for about 3 minutes to get to the main part. I was shocked to see big sign boards of warnings are everywhere - it is an utmost fail for me! Sure, there's nothing wrong with reminding the guests of what to do and what not but it shouldn't be like that! It has become a sore to me already. I think it is better they put all those reminders in one big board only. I really like though that the staff/cleaners of Mateo Hot and Cold Spring Resort are very visible - they now wear a blue T - shirt bearing the name of the company and they are very hands on. As soon as guests leave the cottage, they clean it right away. Also, there's a life guard spot though there's no real life guard but a security guard who makes sure everything is in order.

The style of the main cemented cottages haven't changed though there are additions like the bigger cabana with added amenities. More have been added at the upper portion of the resort. Here's what happened that quite ruined my stay here.  We spent almost 2 hours waiting for the rest to come - without doing anything. We don't have food, nor swimming attire for us so we just let the time pass by. Suddenly, our younger sis called telling us to rent another cottage for our neighbor who want to join us that costs Php 200, same amount of our cottage which can accommodate up to 10 persons. I was looking around to see if there are available cottages - I found one which appears like twice the length of our cottage for Php 250 and can accommodate up to 15 persons. I figured out it would be best and economical if we transfer to this cottage which costs Php 250 for our family and for our neighbor which is only 5 participants. If this happens we're going to split the bill of Php 250 only which is Php 125 each compared to paying Php 200!

san mateo hot and cold spring resort irosin sorsogon

I went back to the reception requesting if we can transfer. The guy behind the counter pointed the nearby list of terms and conditions of this resort painted in the wall. It says it is already prohibited to transfer under these conditions: if the guests have spent more than 2 hours already or they have already eaten their food there (it is already messy thus needs to be cleaned up). My biggest question was - are these circumstances given as OR or BOTH? The guy couldn't answer me because yes we did spent already 2 hours but we never literally used it other than sitting and leaving our belongings.  That time, I don't want to argue because this is vacation for our family. I don't want to cause any drama because there are other guests behind me waiting as well. I HOPE THEY clear their own rules and regulations. Also, I wish that somehow they should know how to bend the rule and make their customer happy. We aren't moving from one cottage for nothing at all. In fact, we are upgrading for a bigger one.

hot springs in irosin sorsogon

History / beginnings of San Mateo Hot and Cold Spring Resorts in Monbon, Irosin, Sorsogon
Before this hullabaloo happened, I was actually chatting with one of the staff of this resort. She said she has been working here since 1983. That's a year before I was born! She said the very first owner of this resort is Dr. Eliseo Mateo who is now dead. His son Jose, took over after. When he died, his daughter Suzeth who is Eliseo's granddaughter now manages the resort. This resort was previously owned by the Mateo family but in 2011 it was turned over to a corporation where the Mateos are also part of the board.

The therapeutical hot springs of Irosin
There are two swimming pools that are made of lukewarm water in San Mateo Resort. In the early morning, one can see smoke coming up like the one from a burning pot. They say water on a lukewarm is therapeutical for simple ailments such as aching body. It reminds me of the kawa hot bath in Antique actually. Only that it doesn't have medicinal leaves sprinkled in it. There are also smaller pools that are hotter than lukewarm - its temperature is higher than what the human body can take. I tried it, I can only dip my feet for a few seconds! They say when you drop an egg down the hottest part of that pool, it can be boiled and ready to eat after! 

The hot springs of Mateo Resort doesn't show any negative signs of global warming. I think hot springs in Irosin belong to the best hot springs in the world. The flow from the source is very steady and strong. The water is clear, meaning it is well maintained. I can see this resort will be around for many more years. 

Day swim (6am - 5pm) Php 40
Night swim (5pm - 10pm) Php 45
Children below 4 feet Php 20
Children above 4 feet Adult charge

Small cottage Php 200
Big cottage Php 250
Cabana Php 700

Non-aircon rooms (for 2 pax)
Overnight of 12 hours Php 600
Overnight of 24 hours Php 2, 200*
***Per head in excess of 2 persons Php 300

Family room (for 5 pax)
Overnight of 24 hours Php 5, 000
Overnight of 12 hours Php 3, 000

Closing time
Weekends 12mn
Weekdays 11pm

Extra room charges
Towel Php 50
Blanket Php 50
Pillow Php 20

Sept 20 - Oct 1, 2017 (Irosin fiesta celebration)
Oct 21 - Nov 5, 2017 ( All Souls/Saints Day)
Mar 23 - Jun 10, 2017 (Summer)
March 30, 2018 (Good Friday)  

Mateo Hot and Cold Springs Resort owned and operated by ARAMARU Resort Corporation
San Benon, Monbon, Irosin, Sorsogon

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