Thursday, May 31, 2012

Batis Aramin Resort and Hotel, Lucban Quezon


It was October of last year when I asked my cousin who works at Batis Aramin  for a room reservation  since we wanted to attend the Pahiyas Festival. I made an early  room reservation coz the resort gets fully booked 5 months before the festival. She got us the Marikit 109  room which can accomodate 11 people. The room has 5 single beds and 3 double decks. Peak season room rate is P5,300/night. We stayed at the resort for 3days and 2 nights and we got a 30% discount so we only paid P7,420! Yay! Batis Aramin is just 15 minutes away from the town proper where the Pahiyas contest takes place. This is such a perfect place for us to stay specially for the kids who love to go swimming. There's a man made lake where you can go kayaking and bamboo rafting,  4 swimming pools, a small playground for the kids and for the adventurous, Adventure Camp  awaits you! We spent our first day swimming and bamboo rafting after feasting on pancit habhab  which my cousin ordered  from the clubhouse restaurant for us.




          Our room was on the second floor


          Marikit room


         Pancit Habhab- a local delicacy best eaten with vinegar


           It's king kong!


                          kiddos can't wait to go swimming



      swimming pool with man made waterfalls


 


         kiddie pool


adult pool

      Water gun fight!



          man made lake



         Superkulit nieces





        bamboo raftting with sis and cousin








Friday, May 25, 2012

Pahiyas Festival 2012, Lucban Quezon


Pahiyas festival is celebrated every 15th of May in honor of San Isidro Labrador, the Patron Saint of farmers. The celebration is a form of thanksgiving by the locals for a bountiful harvest. Houses are beautifully adorned with local's bountiful farm produce such as fruits, vegetables, grains and the likes. But best of all, residents make vibrant colors of kipings to decorate their houses. Kipings are leaf shaped wafers made from rice flour gracefully arranged to create beautiful designs. Grand prize winner for the best decorated house gets Php100,000!
We arrived at my cousin's house at 6:20 AM. She and her hubby were still preparing food for our breakfast so we decided to go outside to check out the houses first. It is best to go to the festival as early as you can  to avoid flocks of people attending the festival.The streets get busy and overly crowded in the afternoon that it would be hard to take pictures of you in front of the colorful houses. We were not able to check out all the participating houses for the competion since light rain showers started to pour in. We just decided to go back to my cousin's house so we can have breakfast. At 10am, it became apparent that massive crowds started to build up  and we got lazy to explore other streets since it would be difficult with 5 kids in tow. After purchasing some pasalubong and souvenirs, we just went back to the resort where we were staying.





Colorful kipings









We all wore black for a nice contrast against the colorful background.
















Not much crowd yet
























Grilled Kipings.(P8) They were a bit salty.



Deep fried kipings. (P10) The kids loved this coz they were sweet and crunchy!





Breakfast my cousin and her hubby prepared for us. Lucban longganisa is the best! Thank you to my cousin for welcoming us to their humble abode!






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Sunday, May 20, 2012

Bellarocca Island Resort and Spa (Day 3)/ The BOAC Hotel

While other guests were already leaving Bellarocca at 6:30 AM due to the regular flight schedule, we were enjoying an al fresco breakfast overlooking the mountains and the sea. To maximize our stay at Bellarocca, we booked a room at BOAC hotel for an overnight stay so we could transfer in the afternoon after we checked out of Bellarocca. We didn't want to check out at 6AM for the morning flight since we still wanted to stay for half a day at the resort. But since complimentary transfers are based on Zest Air schedule, we had to pay P600 for the sea transfer after we checked out at 12 noon.
After a hearty meal, we donned our rash guards again for some watersports activities. We tried windsurfing and jet skiing!

The Verdict:
Beach- Bellarocca doesn't have the best beach. It is rocky-corally but forgivable because of the beautiful view and the staffs who will never leave you while doing some watersports activities. There's always one assigned to teach, help you and to look after you until you finish the activity.
Swimming Pools- I love the infinity pool!
Food-Some were good, some were ok, some needs improvement. There were only a few selection of food on the buffet. I hope they will add more but I understand that they don't have that much guests yet compared to other high end resorts.
Resort Staffs- Courteous and always smiling! Extraordinary efforts are made by the staffs to ensure a pleasant stay at the resort.

If you can find a good deal, Bellarocca is well worth a visit. Since the deal that we availed includes a Php20,000 welcome value credit, I can say that our stay at Bellarocca was well worth the price we paid. Food is kinda expensive. We actually exceeded the Php20,000 allowance for our food and beverage. Or maybe we just have a voracious appetite reason we exceeded! lol!
Zest Air is the current commercial airline that flies to Marinduque.
Zest Air flight schedule:
Morning flights- Mon, Wed, Fri, Sun
Afternoon flights: Tues, Thurs, Sat


Al Fresco breakfast



View from the Clubhouse's al fresco area


I had Filipino Breakfast Set (P780)- Tapsilog, a slice of banana bread,1 pandesal and fresh fruits


Checking out the other side of the beach.









Kuya teaching me how to windsurf. It was heavy! I made it on my own for 2 minutes. lol


Kuya! Help me I don't know how to swim back! (screaming while still trying to stay poised! hehe!)


Jet Skiing for the first time!



Bye Bellarocca! See you next year! ( Just dreaming! )



Welcome drink at the BOAC Hotel.



We got a family deluxe room for Php2,000. It took an hour before we reached the hotel. It was sunday and most establishments were closed! We weren't able to visit some tourist spots around the town.



Lunch at Cafe Mamita (Php835) Crispy pata, Shrimp sinigang, ampalaya con carne, sizzling tuna and fried chicken


Trying to get drunk!



Arrowroot cookies are Marinduque's specialty. They are available at the BOAC hotel. I purchased some for my Mom and Aunts.
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