Working and living in Metro Manila can take a toll on your sanity, so it’s always a wise and wonderful decision to take a much-deserved break from the chaotic metropolis to rest and recharge your embattled spirit. Less than a three-hour drive away from the city, Puesto del Sol is a private retreat in Calatagan, Batangas that beckons weekend warriors.
Here are five great reasons why this low-key resort makes for a perfect getaway from Metro Manila with your family or friends:
Enjoy the serenity of a private resort.
With only three villas and two rooms, the modest-sized resort never gets crowded even when it’s fully-booked, so you can truly enjoy the peacefulness of the countryside with the company of your loved ones. More so on weekdays, when you can have the entire property all to yourself. It’s like having your own vacation home! Accommodation starts at PHP 5,500 for a Casitas room for two persons. For the spacious and well-appointed villas, there’s Casa Cecilia (PHP 7,800, two persons), Casa Isabel (PHP 8,800, four persons) and Casa Cristina (PHP 9,000, eight persons).
Drink in the panoramic views.
Situated on a hilltop at the tip of the Calatagan peninsula, the resort is blessed with sweeping views of the countryside and the open sea. The Spanish-period Cape Santiago Lighthouse peeks above rolling hills with mango trees, guiding passing ships heading to and from Manila. In the distance, one can make out the mountainous islands of Mindoro and Lubang.
Have a relaxing dip in the infinity pool (or your own private plunge pool).
Puesto del Sol obviously may not have a beach, but it has a 21-meter infinity lap pool stretching across the front of the resort, overlooking the sea. An excellent spot to lounge and cool off. Casa Isabel – the best-located villa – has its own plunge pool.
Watch beautiful sunsets over the sea.
There’s good reason why the resort is called “place of the sun” in Spanish. The west-facing property boasts of glorious sunsets over the West Philippine Sea. Watch the sun retire behind the cloudy horizon in fiery reds and sultry purples from the viewing deck or the infinity pool. It’s quite the spectacle (when the weather cooperates)!
Feast on delicious locally-sourced dishes.
The resort’s kitchen serves up flavorsome Filipino and Western-style dishes in generous portions for two to three persons made with the freshest catch and produce from the town market. Some of the winning dishes I had were the sweet and spicy chicken adobo (PHP 395), lemon pepper baked chicken (PHP 400), spicy steamed crab (PHP 1,000 per kilo) and buttered tiger prawns (PHP 1,000 per kilo).
Drop by the quaint historic sites nearby.
The laid-back town of Calatagan has a handful of historic sites worth visiting during your stay. The resort can arrange visits to the Santo Domingo de Silos Church, Museo de Enrique Zobel (which houses the archaeologically-important Calatagan pots) and the 19th century Cape Santiago Lighthouse. If you’re looking for a dose of adrenaline, the resort can arrange wake boarding, snorkeling and ATV rides in town, too!
How to Get There
It’s best to visit the resort in a private car, but commuting is also possible. Public buses from Manila to Calatagan depart from the Southwest Integrated Provincial Transport Terminal at Coastal Mall, Parañaque City. Travel time takes four to five hours, depending on traffic. The route ends at the bus terminal near Calatagan Market where the resort can arrange pick-up for the final 15-minute drive further south to Puesto del Sol Resort.