Thursday, December 6, 2012

Glimpsed: Batis Aramin

Framed in green vegetation is Batis Aramin, classified as Special Interest Resort by the Department of Tourism. I'll bring you there on my next post.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Hotel Review: Batis Aramin Resort and Hotel, Lucban Quezon Province

Batis Aramin Resort & Hotel
Brgy. Malupak, Lucban,
Quezon Philippines, 4328
Telefax: (042) 540-4401 ; 540-7320
Mobile: 0917 595 4145

Situated in lush forest at the foot of Mount Banahaw, tucked down a quiet private road five minutes away from the center of the second class municipality of Lucban is Batis Aramin Resort and Hotel.It was their home away from home last May when they went up to the province to witness the world famous festival - Pahiyas. 


There are various types of accommodation to choose from in Batis Aramin namely: Amihan, Aramin Hotel, Fidez Resthouse, Harana, Marikit, and Pretty Paw.If you are a family of 4 to 8 person travelling to Lucban. Amihan could best accommodate you all. Its fully air-conditioned with 2-4 queen size beds and some rooms have kitchens should you require one.

Pretty Paw

If you are a family of 4 to 8 person travelling to Lucban, Amihan could best accommodate you all. Its fully air-conditioned with 2-4 queen size beds and some rooms have kitchens should you require one. Should you prefer to stay at your own bungalow, then choose Pretty Paw, a  cozy bungalow that could accommodate for 2 complete with balcony, receiving area and bar option.  The spacious resort is perfect for team buildings, swimming, and what not. 


Considering the influx of foreign and local tourists, they were booked five months ahead before the festival took place in the merry month of May. Their air-conditioned room in Marikit has 5 single beds and 3 double decks and can accommodate 11 person. It has three rest rooms! Cable TV, phone, and electric pot ( and instant coffee) are also available. Check out the room rate here and their low season rate here.

Their room is just perfect for the kids who loved to go swimming, the pools are just a stone throw away from Marikit.

Next Post: Swimming Pools in Batis Aramin Resort and Hotel and the other activities they did.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Glimpsed: Life is Vibrant When Travelling

Hues of Spirit

This post marks the end of majestic Marinduque expriences and the beginning of a brand new one, the lovable Lucban.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Visita Iglesia - Immaculate Conception Cathedral, Boac, Marinduque, Phillippines

Few steps from where they've stayed is Marinduque's most important landmark, the Boac Cathedral. Also known as Immaculate Conception Cathedral, it is the home of Our Lady of Immaculate Conception - the patron saint of Boac.

The cathedral is standing strong on the top of the hill in Brgy. Mataas na Bayan, Boac Marinduque. Inside the adobe walls of the fort, its an edifice of extraordinary beauty, guarding the whole Marinduque island.  From the facts on the tablet hanged on the wall, it was built in 1792 and was used to be a fortress and refuge for the locals from the Moro attack in the 18th century. It is a historical church where the Katipunan Flag is said to have been baptized/blessed.

A certified lover of vintage designs, Rome was impressed by her Phil-hispanic gothic beauty. From the bright terra cotta walls to the intricately carved doors engraved with fine details, it is such an outstanding beauty.

He peeked inside the church and took his best one shot without flash in respect to the early church goers. The aisle with brown and white floor pattern to period candle holder to intricate altar,  from his glimpse from the narthex to the transept, the church resembles strong and lasting faith of Marinduque people against all odds for such a long time.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Room Review: The Boac Hotel, Marinduque, Philippines

The Boac Hotel
Brgy. San Miguel, Boac, Marinduque, Philippines
Tel. No. (042) 332-2065

At first glance, The Boac Hotel does not look promising. But they found warm welcome, comfy accommodation and vintage in-house restaurant. There are few rooms. Theirs is a little on the small side on the second floor, but it has aircondition, TV, bath with water heater and the bed is comfy for just Php 2,000.00/night.

Rome and Anney shared on one bed while the Adarnes on the other. Towel, soap and shampoo were also provided for them. 

The hotel is fashioned in bright yellow and green colors outside but full of vintage paraphernalia inside; framed vintage Filipiniana clothes, old lamp, black and white photos. The Filipino inspired reception area  is connected to Rejano's gift and pasalubong (souvenir) store selling souvenirs and province's native products such as Arrowroot cookies, honey, key chains, shirts and bowls made from coconut shells.

Passing through Rejano's store is the in-house restaurant, Cafe Ma'Mita where they had lunch and breakfast in vintage Filipino setting.

The hotel occupies a prime spot in the first class municipality and stone's throw away for just round-about. Boac church, town's plaza and old houses are just a few steps away. There's a touch of Filipino going on when they stayed at the humble but hospitable Boac Hotel. To anyone heading to Bellarocca for a  grand vacation should consider to discover this charming town and should spend a night at The Boac Hotel.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Jet Skiing: Revving it Up in Bellarocca

Their last day in Bellarocca was full of adrenaline-fuelled fun as they took water sports activities available on the island. The windsurfing was all fun and fear-defying activy but tiring. They rest and took photos for a while on the Bellaroccan seaside.

"Let's go for a spin!", Rome exclaimed after a few moments of boredom. The rest of the group hesitated at first. Anney for one, was afraid of waters and they thought Ykaie won't be allowed to ride on the watercraft, PLUS the price of jet ski ride was kinda expensive, around Php 2500 for just 15 minutes!!! But he was very persistent to ride on the water bike. He tempted all of them to ride on the marine vehicle regardless of the fact that they would exceed to their Php 20,000  welcome value credit, they agreed to cover the excess evenly. *end of discussion*

Their instructor taught and demonstrated them the basic controls - it's like plug and play, very easy. Fearless Rome in his black rash guard, board shorts and life vest looked like a seasoned pro as he jetted around. Fact is, it was his first chance to play that extreme water action. Just to have a photo opp riding on a jet ski, Anney conquered her fears and rode with Rome. Rome in controls, Anney held on tight and looked delighted as they zoomed around on Bellaroccan waters but when Rome steered the high speed craft up, she screamed like there was no tomorrow.

The Adarnes had their chance of riding the water bike, Ykaie was so giggly  while her dad maneuver the jet ski smoothly. They rest of the 15 minute session was consumed by Rome. He tested his skills and tried some tricks as he revved the jet ski. He fell in love with the activity, jet skiing is absolutely brilliant and highly satisfactory water sport. He enjoyed even the last few seconds cruising the Bellarocan sea. It was indeed, another perfect day full of sun and fun!

Friday, October 5, 2012

Blown Away: Windsurfing onto Bellaroccan Sea

What they did in Bellarocca was not just kayaking. On their third day, they headed straight off to the shore after breakfast to experience more thrill and action in the warm Bellarocan waters. They've decided to try windsurfing and jet-skiing to spend the rest of the Php 20,000.00 welcome value credit from the package they've availed.

Although Rome tried surfing in Baler last November, it was his first taste of windsurfing. Their patient and enthusiastic instructor taught and demonstrated them the basics – how the wind works the sail, how to stand, steer and turn the sailboard. For Rome, it was all sounded simple when explained.

The moment of truth came, he slides his feet on the board against the mast and one towards the rear. He placed his both hands onto the boom, his left, next to the mast and will be used for steering, while his right was positioned halfway along the sail to control the wind acting as an accelerator, employing his shoulders, forearms and lower back to control the force of the sail. He bent his legs, and signaled the instructor to release the board onto the crystal clear sea. 

He struggled at first to remember which hand to use and which leg to keep straight. After a few painless falls he soon began to get the hang of it, managed to stand on the board and he began to really enjoy himself.

A strong wind blew and forced him at top speed to the deep end of the water. He started to panic when he can't maneuver the sailboat to turn around. He tried different maneuvering, pushing his hips in and lean backwards, using his weight to get the board up on its edges and pushed to do a return to no avail. His instructor shouted at him to change the position of his feet if he wanted to return and he obeyed. Thankfully, he managed to shift the direction of the boat back to shore. Once again, he headed across Bellarocca bay beneath a sail full of wind blowing against his face.

His windsurfing experience was elemental: feeling the monstrous and warm Pacific wind while managing to keep him standing and sailing. He felt proud of himself and sailed one more round. For him, windsurfing is more fun than surfing.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Top 10 Things to Do in Ibiza

Cheap package holiday deals are a fantastic low cost ticket to your ideal destination. Look to book Ibiza holidays online for a cost efficient relaxing break in the sun.

Cheap package holiday deals ensure that the basics – including transfers, flights and accommodation – are covered. All that’s left for you to do is choose how to spruce up your serene stay.

1.     Visit the Dalt Vila Medieval castle. Take sensible shoes and cross the drawbridge into the Castle of Ibiza. A grand landmark, positioned with importance at the peak of the ‘little mountain by the sea’.
2.     Taste authentic Spanish fare at Restaurante El Viejo Gallo in San José. Originally opening its doors in 1959, this is a landmark restaurant offering an extensive menu wrapped up in 50 years of tradition.
3.     Treat yourself at the infamous Hippy Markets. Get ready to be thrown back to the 60s. Held in Es Caná on Wednesdays and San Carlos on Saturdays.
4.     Discover the Can Marça Caves of Puerto de San Miguel beach.
5.     Take a trip to Es Vedra from Cala d'Hort. A picturesque island with sandy bays, fine fish restaurants, just a short boat ride from mainland Ibiza.
6.     Ride the tourist train. Yes it’s cheesy, but it’s an easy, carefree way to take in the sights of the island.
7.     Enjoy some adrenaline fuelled action at the Aguamar waterpark.
8.     Dive into the deeps of Ibiza. Ibiza has tens of diving spots; one of the more recent additions is the Don Pedro wreck near to Ibiza port.
9.     Find your Zen at one of Ibiza’s day spas. Spa Atzaro is a local favourite.
10. Bathe on the beautiful beaches. Cala Tarida is a 15 minute drive from San Antonio and is the most photographed beach on the island. Truly postcard perfect.

Book Ibiza holidays for the 2013 season now. Secure the best cheap package holiday deals as soon as possible to avoid disappointment.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Take a Kayak Ride: An Exciting Marine Sport in Bellarocca

Bellarocca's grandeur does not just end with elegance and luxurious comfort. The Resort has a long list of attractions, activities and recreations. From laid back to wild, group to alone traveler, age doesn't matter, you'll definitely find an interesting activities to engage on.


This was the second of their three day Bellaroca trip. Rome's group, sporting on their rash guards, who wanted to to be where the grown up action was - by which means engaging for thrill and marine action, headed to Bellaroca's shore to take a kayak ride. Colorful kayaks on the shore waiting to be pulled-up onto the sea uplifted their spirits. 

The waves were pleasantly gentle, sky was clear, sun was endless and the inviting ocean was so pristine in different shades of blue. The couple, Alvin and Peachy along with their princess enjoyed paddling in blue water. Ykaie giggled in excitement when her Dad speed up their flailing vessel.

Rome, the son of the beach thought Kayak is his brother "wild time", he said. He longed for this experience for such a long time. He has a talent in paddling back in his Palawan days where he was raised. He kept his eyes locked on the horizon, still showing great paddling form. Deja vu of his childhood kicked-in as he paddled away from the shore.  He decided to come back when he reached the pier. The experience brought back memories of the past and established a brand new one.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Breaking Dusk: Spectacular Sunset and Supermoon in Bellarocca

Bellarocca's way to label the end of unforgettable day was so splendid. She broke a beautiful dusk before she fell asleep that night to please her guests even more. Her generosity was unwearied as she painted the horizon with stunning sunset of different shades of red, orange, and gold while her visitors gathered at the pier celebrating with sunset cocktails in hands, cheering for life.

From his point of view, Rome admired the spectacular golden sun rays around him on a gloaming twilight. Their group was very impressed as the sun went down over the horizon with such a captivating scenery. Sunset brought a remarkable change on the entire island, transforming its bright white villas and terrazas into a chameleon that briefly glows gold to red before working its way through the full gamut of blues, silvers and greys.

Unlike any other ordinary night, she commanded the moon to appear brighter and bigger on clear skies in all its glory against Mt. Malindig. Its brightness reflected on the white Mediterranean inspired Pavilion. They all gazed at the lunar perigee of super moon as it ascended.

A rare full moon at its closest distance to earth and a scenic sunset were magical moments, Rome thought. Somehow, it reminded him of the special relationship he has with everything around him..."We are all related and connected together in this universe. We are all part of God", he said. 

Monday, September 17, 2012

Resort Review: Plunge Into Incredible Swimming Pools of Bellarocca Island Resort & Spa

"All in time, you gotta travel around the globe", Rome said to himself while letting himself mesmerized by the beauty of neighboring green cliffs and forest of  Mt. Malindig. While resting a bit in the balcony of their Terraza after a long and luscious lunch at the resort's Clubhouse, the tranquility of the place enabled him to rest in silence, away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life in the Metro. Anney and Ykaie dressed in their rash guards woke him up, asking him to join them to make a splash into the resort's swimming pools. Excitement kicked-in when he finally remembered where he was. He jumped out from his bed, changed his clothes and called the front office to arrange a  golf cart service to pick them up from their Terraza to the seaside swimming pool.

Only guests who choose to stay in Bellarocca's garden and cliff villas will experience the best amongst the accommodations in the Santorini inspired island. They'll have their own infinity pool, outdoor jacuzzi or whirlpool, and exterior lounge area. Clientele like Rome's group, who chose to stay in suites, casas and terrazas however, have access to the three common swimming pool in the island; seaside swimming pool, hotel lap swimming pool, and natural hot spring pool.

The seaside swimming pool is just one of the incredible features of Bellarocca. it has a view of the ocean and a breathtaking backdrop - the volcanic mountain range of Mt. Malindig. The flowing water is clean, soft on the skin and hair, and there was no smell of chlorine. Freshwater in the island came from the nearby reservoir in the mainland Marinduque. The pool wasn't tiled though, they were told that the water is sulfuric and would destroy the tiles but water supply is treated and filtered to remove all mineral and chemical impurities.

The pool has a spectacular sun deck, gazebo, and a sunken bar in bright white. They ordered refreshments from the nearby Seaside Pavilion. They noticed that staff are attentive without being obtrusive. Green-striped fresh towels were handed to them, free of charge.

On their way to the Terraza, passing through the lap pool, they were tempted to splash out again. The hotel lap pool is hidden away in this quiet residential neighborhood behind Bellarocca's main entrance and open to guests until 9 PM everyday.

Surrounded by palm tress and classic Mediterranean inspired suites, they dived in and did race laps from one end to another. When Rome tried to float, azure blue sky above smiled at him, he felt total serenity and calmness. Its like they own the entire island. Water was warm and no other guest plunged in until the end of that day.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Room Review: Terraza 305, Bellarocca Island Resort and Spa, Marinduque, Philippines

The luxurious, Santorini-inspired architecture of Terraza 305 in Bellarocca Island Resort and Spa is where the Greek gods and goddesses (Rome, Anney, Peachy, Alvin and Ykaie) nestled for three days and two nights when they had a luxury break last summer. 

After a quick orientation at the lobby, complimentary golf cart service brought them to the elevated Terraza 305, along the ridges of the island adjacent to the view of Mt Malindig. As they entered to the pre-cooled Terraza, it opened to a high ceiling dinning room with six setter dinning table.

Welcome letter and snacks of banana spring rolls and sweet cassava await on the glass-topped table when they arrived. Electronic Coffee and tea kettle, well-stock personal bar, kitchen utensils neatly placed inside the drawers, and refrigerator full of soda, cold water, and alcoholic beverages completed the dinning area.

Their Terraza has two hardwood floors bedrooms and are equipped with individually-controlled air-conditioning system, each have a private verandah offering the best and uninterrupted view of Mt Malindig. The majestic view seems like adjoined to their rooms.  

The 2nd time honeymooners, Peachy and Alvin along with their princess Ykaie shared the King size bed while Rome and Anney occupied the twin bed room upstairs. Extremely comfortable, the beds are not too hard nor too soft...and generously fitted with soft sheets and a down comforter. Silver Secrets pillows made in geese feathers gave them utmost comfort and fairytale dreams at night that they wished not to leave.

The two bedrooms was beautifully furnished with a range of modern day gadgets; Skype – enabled Belkin telephone, Plasma TV with complete DVD Player and home theater stereo systems, satellite cable TV, and Electronic safe deposit box for their valuables. Not to mention, complimentary internet connectivity in the room and in general public areas. Rome put Enya's music on iPod dock and hifi compact sound systems that sets their mood up to sheer relaxation.

Their "oooohhhhsss" echoed in the spacious modern bath over the potions and shampoos on offer: All natural—L’Occitane, AVEDA, REN, Molton Brown, take that! Dental care, his & hers bathrobe, and slippers are also complimentary. The honeymooner's room has a bath tub. The shower in Rome's bath has its own room with enormous shower head which shoots out an enveloping torrent of steaming hot and stimulating cold water. It was such a delight.

Room with a serene view:  the most immediate and lasting impression as a guest at Bellaroca, was the silence. 

Overall, Bellaroca's accommodations never failed to deliver their promise of elegance and luxurious comfort with a touch of a home-like essence. While such luxury seems slightly out of place in these frugal times, particularly in the Philippines, Bellaroca is a proof that quality is always priceless.


Post Script: The published rate of the package was Php 120,560 but they got it for just Php 48,500 excluding airfare through Deal Dozen, a website that sell hotel reservation at a discounted price. Meals and traditional free breakfast are excluded too but the package includes  Php 20,000 welcome value credit which can be used for food and beverage, mini bar, massages, marine sports such as windsurfing, hobie cat sailing, jet skiing, etc, which was, they thought, more of our advantage.