My vacation in Pico de Loro

Hamilo Coast Pico de Loro. An exclusive resort located at the peaceful city of Nasugbu, Batangas. It is said that this resort has been a popular vacation spot for the rich and the celebrities not only for the Filipinos but also for the foreigners as well.

Three months ago, I was lucky to experience the luxury of the rich. And I will write my three-day and two-night adventure on this exclusive beach resort.

Thursday, 18th of April 2013. We just got home from our 7:30 p.m. worship service when my mother’s college friend, Tita Grace, gave us a text that Tita Mila was inviting us for a three-day and two-night vacation at a resort named Pico de Loro that was located at Nasugbu, Batangas. I groaned once I heard the word “resort” because it may be some cheap-o place with populated and polluted pools and a place where I’ll be receiving annoying sunburns at my back. I wanted to refuse because honestly, I’m like a hermit during the hot season because I’m too lethargic to go because I hate the hot weather. But since my father was on a business trip, and there was no one available in my cousins to ‘babysit’ me, I was forced to go. Reluctantly, I snatched my traveling bag from my closet and packed my clothes.

As we arrived to Magallanes the next day, we joined Tita Mila in her car with our clothes that carried the foul odors from Payatas (I don’t know why my mother chose a jeep that traversed to that place.) and I was so anxious and bashful because there were two teenage boys that were about my age inside that car. But we didn’t hear a single complaint from them so maybe it’s fine.

The trip took us three hours… three dull and boring hours. Because all I could see was endless trails of farmlands, a beeline of cars, a chain of restaurants and inns and I’m receiving cramps for sitting for so long. I instantly regretted that I didn’t add songs to my IPhone because the songs that was stored at my phone that time was only good for an hour and let me tell you that repeating the same song over and over again is becoming irksome. I couldn’t read a book because I have kinetosis or motion sickness. (Bummer!) So I just slept for the remaining hours of the trip.

After three hours, we finally made it to the resort. In some resorts that I’ve been, I could see the slides, the lounge chairs, the cottages and the pools from the entrance already. But this one’s different. I saw the gates, but I couldn’t see the resort itself. So I thought that it would be quite a drive since all I could see was paved roads and a cluster of trees.

After processing for identification, we continued inside and then I saw a sign that says Horseback Riding at a corner and I could see a few people hiking on hills while on a horse’s back. I asked Tita Mila if I could horseback later, but she told me it would be a long drive.

I didn’t know what she meant about ‘a long drive’ so I just nodded. But after a twenty-minute drive, I understood what she meant.

‘A long drive’ doesn’t even fit the word. It should be a long, long drive because just after twenty minutes, we were on top of a mountain that overlooked the resort. I saw fancy-looking condominiums, a huge man-made lake, and the resort’s beach. I could see also see some amenities from that view. It’s clearly not a walking distance from the entrance.

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The view from the hill… See what I meant by a long, long drive?

I thought that we’ll be renting a room or a cottage (If there are cottages around.) but we went straight to one of the fancy-looking condominiums. Tita Mila’s condominium was located at the ‘Miranda’ one and their room was at the corner of the fifth floor.

Their condominium was capacious (In fact, it was more commodious than my actual house.) and designed, furnished with the best quality materials. There was a mini bar just beside the dining room, a spacious living room beside the terrace that overlooked the man-made lake, and there were three bedrooms enough to fit a family. The bedroom that was assigned for me and my mom was at the right. Once I opened the wooden door, I saw the room was more spacious than my parents’ bedroom.

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This is the view from the master’s bedroom. That’s the man-made lake and the other condominium.

There was a queen-sized bed with soft pillows and a warm quilt that was imported from Switzerland, a huge dresser at my right, a fur carpet that covered most of the room, a remote controlled air conditioner on the ceiling and a small coffee table with two chairs beside the colossal windows that overlooked the lush and green surroundings of the resort.

After we ate our lunch, we teenagers planned to take a dip in the beach club. Our mothers told us to have fun while they cook our dinner so we packed our swimming necessities and went downstairs to flag a shuttle bus since all of the amenities in this resort is not a walking distance.

After two minutes, we arrived at the beach club. I could smell the ocean breeze already from the entrance. There were two pools on the beach club, too. One is for the children and the one is for the adults. The place had boutiques and souvenir shops and this is where the resort’s bar was located.

We went straight to the beach and I was amazed that the water was so clear that even if you go farther from the shore, you could still see your feet! I could see some fish without diving and I saw a small jellyfish! I overheard from the people nearby that you could feed the fishes on the morning.

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We played a fun game named ‘treasure hunting’. It’s a game in who collects the most beautiful seashells and rocks. I was third place by the way.

On that beach, we also saw a reporter from the show Kapuso Mo, Jessica Soho. We wanted the girl to interview us but we were too shy to do that so we just let her pass.

We girls took a rest for a while and the boys played beach volleyball after the treasure hunt game.  For the first time in my life, I was able to lie down on those chair thingy that I always see on beach advertisements where a beautiful girl would have a drink in a wine glass decorated with a little umbrella and a slice of a fruit and would look at the viewers and just smile. It felt so relaxing!

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Behold! The chair thing.

I saw people placing green flags on a pole and a waiter clad in a beach outfit would come to you. I wanted to try it so I placed a green flag and when a waiter came he gave me a menu. When I browsed the menu, all of the drinks were expensive! I asked if exclusive members are exempted from paying but the waiter told me no. Unfortunately, I didn’t bring any money with me so I just shyly returned the menu at the waiter and told him I’ll order a drink next time. (If ever that happens.)

It was six o’ clock p.m. and the lifeguards that were patrolling around the beach area told us that the place was closed for the day. So the next destination that we went to was the resort’s country club.

Five minutes later, we arrived at the country club. I thought that we’d be playing golf at night since that was my idea of a country club. But I couldn’t see fields anywhere or golf club rentals. I could see some tennis and badminton courts though. So I thought we’d be playing tennis or badminton but the boys said we’d be swimming.

I couldn’t see any pools around. But when we walked farther, at the back of the building, I saw two pools. One was Olympic sized (since this was the biggest pool that I’ve ever seen. I might be wrong because I don’t know how big the actual Olympic sized pool is.) And the other was larger than the pools on the beach club.

I wasn’t aware of the clothing restrictions. I was wearing swimming shorts and a shirt that time and the lifeguard prohibited me from swimming in the pool. But good thing I had my swimwear underneath!

Nine o’ clock p.m. We were so tired and hungry so we decided to return at the condo. It was just a walking distance from the country club so we didn’t bother flagging a shuttle bus. We just used the shortcut instead.

The delicious smell of adobo and other food greeted us and made our mouths watered once we entered the condo. Our mothers prepared the table while we washed for dinner.

That night, before going to bed, all of us played video games and board games until one o’ clock p.m.

When we came home, my family was able to watch the episode of KMJS that featured exclusive resorts in the country. I realized that time that I was lucky to experience such luxury.

For the rest of the trip, I wasn’t able to visit the other amenities. The beach and the country club were our only destinations. I didn’t have the chance to rent a bicycle or jog or even play ping pong! But it was fun even though all we did is swim. After all, spending three days on an exclusive resort full of celebrities and the rich is one of the most unforgettable moments of my life for me.

Cabugayan, Charisse

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