Our first summer family getaway was to Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar. I have to warn you that this is a long and photo-heavy post.
One sunny Wednesday, we drove to Bataan to visit Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar for an overnight stay. We arrived right before lunchtime after being in the car for around three hours. It helped to have a printout of the map to the place. Checking in was a breeze as I have already paid for the room reservation using credit card. I also printed the confirmation letter which I knew was important, but Las Casas also emailed me asking me to sign the guest registration form and the fraud advisory form, both that I think could be filled up when we arrive and were not very urgent.
Anyway, we ate at Café Marivent, the Spanish restaurant in Las Casas for lunch. My eyes popped at the prices of the food, but I knew that that’s expected when eating inside a restaurant in a resort or a hotel. It’s also good that the viands were good for sharing. Sorry, I didn’t take any photos of the food. I’m sure you know what Pork Adobo, Beef Kaldereta, Pakbet with Bagnet and white rice look like. Hehe! 😀 The Pakbet lacked flavor, it’s just very orange from the achuete, I suppose. I liked the kaldereta, with cheese! The adobo was not as saucy as how we usually cook it.
We walked around after the meal and took photos.
We chanced upon a booth with beaded necklaces and bracelets for sale. Ella, my eldest, engaged in its Marikit Jewelry beaded jewelry-making workshop. The price for children is 300Php for three bracelets, although we were given a discount. Ella made one for herself, one for Cayla and one for Caleb. So sweet!
Check in time was 2:00 PM, and because we were still early, we took advantage of the calesa ride with a horse named Makisig, for 50Php per person, children four years old and below ride for free.
We rested in our big room, a studio with loft, before Ella and I went on the Heritage Tour – a walking guided tour of the owner, Mr. Jerry Acuzar’s collection of historical houses. The stories behind the characters of history books were quite interesting.
Dinner was at La Bella Teodora, a very dimly lit Italian restaurant famous for its thin crust pizzas, or so they say.
I have read how lovely the place looks at night, with soft warm lights illuminating the facades of the restored houses and historical replicas. I looked forward to seeing them and asked my hubby Rix to capture them.
What I liked about Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar:
- It’s a unique, Filipino-themed resort.
- It’s a wonderful mix of old and new, historical and modern. I am glad the bathrooms have modern fixtures, though.
- My hubby Rix noted that the electric cables must be underground so as not to ruin the view and the vintage feel. Very well thought out!
- There’s a swimming pool and a beach in the vicinity, which my daughter really looked forward to. The pool was very shallow, perfect for my little ones to frolic in.
- All six of us were all given welcome drinks (sago’t gulaman), even if our room reservation was for four.
- Aside from the free Heritage Tour and a Workshop Tour (a tour of workshops that craft the parts of the houses and artists at work), there are other things to do like riding the bicycle, kayaking, fishing and playing games like sungka, billiards and table tennis in the gameroom. There was even aerobics in the morning! Look like people of old times with Fotografia de la Escolta complete with Filipiniana costumes.
- The people working there were courteous and friendly, I felt quite at ease in Las Casas. Vacations should be relaxing, right? When we came home, I did not feel tired at all.
- The children felt at home in Las Casas albeit having a bit of difficulty walking on the uneven cobblestone-paved roads and the slippery wooden stairs going to our unit on the second floor.
- Rix could fly his multicopter and take an aerial footage of the place. Yay! Please watch the video he made below.
Early morning on the next day, we went to bask under the sun on the sand near the sea, while sweating (or is it just me?)! Afterwards, we had a Filipino and American breakfast of bangus, longganisa, bacon and pancakes at Café Marivent.The accommodation comes with complimentary breakfast for four, we ordered additional pancakes for the two little ones.
Below are other romantic sights I captured from Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar. I love the patterns made by the windows, arcades, and stone walls.
I would surely recommend this place to our friends who need a vacation and a temporary change of view. It’s a place rich in history and you’ll never know what you’ll discover behind every door, beyond every window and every arc.