Villa Escudero is a coconut plantation located in San Pablo, Laguna (almost Tiaong, Quezon) that has been turned into a resort. The estate has been opened to the public in 1981 and become a prime tourist destination for locals, overseas Filipinos and a wide array of foreign visitors to the country. You’ll find this place a haven showcasing the Philippines’ rich cultural heritage, offering a beguiling glimpse of its history, cuisine, dress, customs and natural beauty
The estimated travel time going there is 2 hours from Manila but I think I drove for three long hours going there.
The first time I’ve been to Villa Escudero was way back in July of 1991. I was twelve years old. We went swimming to celebrate the birthday of my late Tita Raquel’s husband, Uncle Jose. I remember awkwardly wearing this pink swimsuit over a black underwear that just showed when I hit the water. I was extremely shy back then because it was my first time to wear a swimsuit..LOL!
The second time was last November. When I chauffered sis and her friend ( a visitor from abroad) in and out of Manila. You see, I am the family driver… because I am the only one in the family (except my peanutbutter♥, of course) who knows how to drive.
When I know I’m gonna be THE driver for the day, I always wear a dress. Why? I am already the driver… it doesn’t mean I also have to look the part! I like the casual dresses from Zalora because of the variety and the different brands they offer. When I don’t have time to go to the mall, Zalora saves the day.
Our first stop was the AERA Memorial Museum.
It was founded by spouses Arsenio and Rosario Escudero, houses one of the largest collections in the country, unmatched in its eclectic diversity. Housed in a replica of a long-gone church in Intramuros with painted trompe-l’oeil ceilings, the present building opened for viewing in 1987. The core of the collection is its trove of colonial religious art. The superbly executed silver altars, gilded carrozas, ivory santos, embroidered vestments and intricately carved inages and bas-reliefs and tableaux, most dating from the Spanish colonial era are a testimony to the artistry and piety of the Filipino. Reflecting a lifetime of dedicated collecting and the wide-ranging interest of the Escudero couple, there are also extensive collections of Oriental ceramics, natural history and ethnographic dioramas, costumes, household furniture, weaponry and many other items of interest collected in their travels around the world. (- from http://www.villaescudero.com)
I didn’t have a photo of the museum because cameras aren’t allowed inside and you’ll have to check it in before going in.
We just had our photo session outside…and after a short photo session was the Carabao Ride!
Our carabao’s (water buffalo) name was Tisay, I guess this is attributed to her light and pinkish complexion, heehee. I think the Carabao Ride lasted for, more or less, five minutes.
Then after a short walk and a few steps on the stairs, we arrived at the Waterfalls Restaurant.
Lunch is served buffet style at the Waterfalls Restaurant. Just like what the name implies, you’ll get a unique experience dining with the waterfalls on your backdrop and clear spring water running over your feet.
You’ll have to remove you slippers/shoes, of course to prevent it from being wet and to prevent you from slipping on the wet pavement.
Ykaie and I on the buffet table
Among the food that were served were Gado Gado Salad, Pancit Bihon, Grilled Chicken, Grilled Tilapia, Grilled Pork Belly, Beef Mechado, and Pumpkin Soup.
Sis and her friend went for a little bamboo rafting after lunch. Ykaie wanted to go swimming but we didn’t bring any extra clothes and swimsuit. I told her we’ll just go back there with daddy when he comes home in July.