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Pearl Farm Beach Resort: Spelling luxury in Mindanao

Paying a visit to – arguably – the most high-end venue in southern Philippines, Pearl Farm Beach Resort, where bliss can be had for the taking.

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Pearl Farm

Davao CityYou may not be the most fervent believer of traditional healing practices – for instance, Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) holds that special points in the body (usually at the extremities) correspond to other (usually more vital) parts of the body, so that (as an example) applying pressure at the space between the thumb and the pointer finger could relieve pail (headache, stomachache, and so on).

But after an activity-filled day (island-hopping, snorkeling, road-tripping and the likes) at the Island Garden City of Samal, no matter your way of believing (or seeing), every pressure given by the deft hands of the masseuse/s on the body delivers… relief. While lying on a cushioned white mat, facing Davao’s sea slowly get swallowed by darkness, such is the pleasure derived at the Pearl Farm Ylang Ylang Spa – Pearl Farm Beach Resort’s health and wellness center.

Not that any less ought to be expected, considering that the place’s offerings are (in a word) pricey. Heck, just about everything in this place is pricey.

But in this way, Davao’s Pearl Farm Beach Resort spells luxury in these parts of southern Philippines…

STAYING THE NIGHT

If your concept of “tropical paradise” is Station 1 of Boracay, NOT Stations 2 and 3, then Pearl Farm Beach Resort should satisfy.

Note that – even if it is being sold as in Davao – the resort is actually not in Davao City proper. Instead, it is located in a small island cum province across the strait, poetically called the Island Garden City of Samal. Going to the resort, therefore, takes from 30 minutes (of ferry ride) from the Sasa Wharf on Davao City’s ferry terminal at the Davao Waterfront Insular Hotel.

By the way, don’t expect to see gardens – there aren’t any; but the name is supposed to encapsulate the beauty that can be found in the island.

The Pearl Farm Beach Resort actually housed a farm for the south sea pearls (thus the name). In the 1990s, however, the owners converted it into the luxury resort that it is now.

It is popular to day guests who head to it to swim at its (somewhat small) swimming pools, or take a stroll around the vegetation in the 11-hectare complex, or take a dip at the white sand beach. This day trip is affordable – only costing approximately P2,500 per person (including a meal a boot).

It is when staying over for the night that the resort’s luxe image is highlighted.

There are actually various room types available, ranging from hilltop rooms to those in houses on stilts. If sleeping lulled by the sounds of singing crickets is what’s desired, the former is a must-consider. But for those who want to be pacified by the sound of the waves gently crushing against the rocks, then the latter is recommended.

Davao2As for the room rates? The Balay (a.k.a. hilltop) rooms cost from P8,550 per person (single occupancy); the same price charged for the beach-side (yet located far from the main receiving area) Samal House and Mandaya House. Prices fall (a little) from P6,700 per person for those considering sharing. The prices of the rooms in the houses on stilts start from approximately P9,700 per person per night (minimum of two persons).

These prices come with welcome drinks; one breakfast, one lunch and one dinner; complimentary use of swimming pool, beach area, mini gym, basketball court, badminton court, tennis court and game room; and roundtrip boat transfers.

AMENITIES GALORE

As befits its luxury tag, Pearl Farm Beach Resort has various offerings that will suit various demands. There’s an Aqua Sports Center, where guests can rent out speed boats and outrigger boats for cruising; jet-skis; banana boat rides; kayaks, hobie cats; and snorkeling gear. It also has certified instructors for wind-surfing, water-skiing and scuba diving (the place has two sunken World War II Japanese vessels awaiting discovery). There are the aforementioned (not too big) outdoor swimming pools. There is a tennis/basketball/badminton court. There is a game room. There is a conference room for up to 70 pax. There is a souvenir shop (called Butik). And there is even the Mandaya Weaving Center, where Mandaya tribeswomen skillfully weave their traditional fabrics (called dagmay) and other ornamentation.

But if you’re just looking at spending the days lazy, sipping drinks while enjoying the breeze and getting lost while looking at the distance may be had at Parola Bar (that offers views of the distant Mt. Apo), Maranao Restaurant (offering Filipino and international cuisines, with seafood specialties), or Malipano Gazebo (in a nearby, yet separate island).

JUST TAKING IT SLOW

And it is actually taking it slowly that is what’s best done in Pearl Farm Beach Resort.

So that the stress-busting treatments at Pearl Farm’s Ylang Ylang Spa are worth considering.

The men’s “stress buster”, priced at P1,000, is a combo of Chinese, Swedish and deep tissue techniques. Hilot, priced at P1,250, gives the traditional Filipino massage a twist with the use of heated banana leaves and your choice of VCO, tanglad oil, or Ylang-ylang essential oil. The “Pearl Farm Royal Massage”, priced at P2,500, is a two-our session that makes use of special oil blends as mood therapy. And then there’s the warm stone massage, priced at P1,500, that makes use of (this should be quite obvious) hot stones as tools for the massaging.

For the not-that-adventurous, you can go “common”, by availing of the Swedish oil massage (P1,000), Shiatsu (P1,000), or the Ventosa (P1,625).

Other treatments include: body scrubs (from P1,250), foot treatment (from P875), facials (from P1,000), and hair treatments (from P1,000).

It was, in fact, while getting my feet massaged by the pool that I got to appreciate this place’s (let’s say enduring) appeal. Getting pampered, while taking in the sights and sounds – of the vast blue sea that seem to connect with the infinity pool; and of the insect sounds from the thick foliage enveloping the resort – is how I imagine being blissful to be. And this, truly, may be one of the best ways to achieve that while in these parts of the Philippines.

Pearl Farm Beach Resort is located at Kaputian, Island Garden City of Samal, Philippines. For more information, contact: (+6382) 2351234, (+6382) 2351235, or (+6382) 2351236.

Its Davao sales office is located at 3/F Abreeza Ayala Mall, J.P. Laurel Avenue, Davao City. For more information, call (+6382) 2850601 or (+6382) 2850876; or email kadizon@anflocor.com.

Its Manila office is located at Ground Floor ANFLOCOR Building, 411 Quirino Avenue corner NAIA Road, Tambo Parañaque City 1700. For more information, call (+632) 8552741 local 207 and 208, or (+632) 8547892; or email: fslebris@anflocor.com, gbdichosa@anflocor.com, or eftuanio@anflocor.com.

A registered nurse, “Ching” – as many fondly call Rachelle Grace – believes that a holistic approach to health and wellness is what everyone should aim for. She is, therefore, always on the lookout for what could help achieve this. And yes, she shares them openly, believing “knowledge about what works won’t be much use if it’s not known by as many as possible”.

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Filipino travelers value flexibility and accommodation choices – Visa

Filipinos value flexibility and accommodation choices, where 75% of travelers prioritized cleanliness when choosing their accommodation for the trip as a possible effect of the pandemic, and 35% of travelers chose to travel independently instead of packaged tours.

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As post-pandemic travel resumes, research shows that flexibility, convenience, and safety continue to be sought after by travelers around the globe. The latest Visa Global Travel Intentions Study (GTI) 2023[1] shows the evolving travel habits of travelers, presenting a roadmap for businesses to cater to their needs.

In the Philippines, some key findings of the GTI study revealed that Filipinos value flexibility and accommodation choices, where 75% of travelers prioritized cleanliness when choosing their accommodation for the trip as a possible effect of the pandemic, and 35% of travelers chose to travel independently instead of packaged tours.

Jeff Navarro, Visa’s Country Manager for the Philippines and Guam said, “We continue to see outbound travel bouncing back in the country to pre-pandemic levels, where Filipinos have taken on average two leisure trips in the last 12 months. We are optimistic that tourism will remain a vital backbone of the economy as we move toward the year-end holiday season, as Visa continues to facilitate safe and secure cross-border shopping activity, both for inbound tourists shopping at our many wonderful local landmarks, and for Filipinos traveling locally or abroad”.

The GTI Study revealed that the key motivations for Filipinos travelling locally and abroad are mostly for relaxation (69%), exploring something new (52%), and for adventure (48%).

The top three destinations abroad for 89% of Filipino travelers are to Asia Pacific countries such as Japan, Singapore, and Hong Kong, with travel peaking between December 2022 and March 2023.

“While we are also optimistic of the digitalization of travel that extends across buying airline tickets and tours, accommodation, travel insurance, and shopping, the study also showed 66% of Filipino travelers had payment concerns prior to leaving for their trip. This can be stressful for those who are not yet well-versed in digital payments, and who feel the need to carry cash and find money changers and ATMs. Contactless payments have emerged as the mode of choice in many places around the world, and we are supportive of all stakeholders in the ecosystem working together to enable cashless and contactless payments in the Philippines,” Jeff added.

The path to progress in tourism is a shared journey, and Visa will continue playing a role in shaping the industry’s future through widespread acceptance of digital payments for everyone, everywhere.


[1] The Global Intentions Study 2023 surveys more than 40,000 consumers globally across 37 markets including around 1,000 respondents in the Philippines, on travelers’ recent trips in the past 12 months and intention to travel in the next 12 months. The study’s fieldwork was conducted from April 2023 to June 2023.

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The Ascott Limited unveils Citadines Roces Quezon City

Once completed, Citadines Roces Quezon City holds the potential to establish the Ascott Limited within Quezon City, leading to growth opportunities and further brand awareness to the northern parts of the metro.

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The Ascott Limited (Ascott) is thrilled to announce the upcoming opening of its latest serviced residence, Citadines Roces Quezon City, located in the vibrant Quezon City.

With its prime location in Don A. Roces Avenue Diliman, Citadines Roces promises to be a premier destination for both business and leisure travelers seeking a comfortable and convenient getaway experience in the heart of Metro Manila. Once completed, Citadines Roces Quezon City holds the potential to establish the Ascott Limited within Quezon City, leading to growth opportunities and further brand awareness to the northern parts of the metro.

Quezon City, the largest city in Metro Manila and the capital of the Philippines has been experiencing rapid growth in terms of development. As a recognized emerging district with established townships and mixed-use communities, the city has become a hub for multinational companies and government offices. Citadines Roces Quezon City is strategically situated near these businesses, as well as shopping malls and renowned companies, providing the utmost convenience to its potential residents.

Set to open its doors in November 2023, the serviced residence offers 200 well-appointed suites, including studio, one-bedroom, and two-bedroom apartments. Each residence is thoughtfully designed to provide a combination of style and comfort while also showcasing its modern look designed for functionality. Future guests of the property can expect a seamless blend of contemporary amenities and top-of-the-line personalized services to cater to their needs and preferences.

The serviced residence boasts a range of exceptional amenities, ensuring that every guest is in for a well-rounded living experience. From a retail podium offering convenient shopping options to performance spaces that inspire creativity, Citadines Roces Quezon City is designed to cater to the most diverse type of travelers. The property also features an all-day dining restaurant, function spaces for meetings and events, a swimming pool, a fully equipped fitness center, and a resident’s lounge for both relaxation and socializing.

“As we introduce Citadines Roces Quezon City, we are excited to offer a dynamic and modern living concept that meets the evolving needs of today’s travelers,” said Philip Barnes, Ascott’s Country General Manager. “With its strategic location and an array of amenities, Citadines  Roces is poised to be a preferred choice for those seeking a comfortable and convenient serviced residence experience in Quezon City.”

As The Ascott Limited expands its presence in the Philippines, Citadines Roces Quezon City represents the brand’s commitment to offering an unparalleled level of comfort, convenience, and contemporary living in prime locations nationwide. 

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Ortigas Land previews Maple at Verdánt Towers’ production floor

Maple at Verdánt Towers — which earned the award for Best Upper Mid-End Condo in Metro Manila at the 2021 Philippine Property Awards — is the developer’s first residential tower to rise in Ortigas East. Set in an emerging urban address and designed with upscale features, Maple at Verdánt Towers will foster a vibrant live-work-play community for young professionals and families.

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Premier property developer, Ortigas Land, unveils the completed mock-up units of Maple at Verdánt Towers granting selected clients an exclusive tour on Saturday, September 23. 

Maple at Verdánt Towers — which earned the award for Best Upper Mid-End Condo in Metro Manila at the 2021 Philippine Property Awards — is the developer’s first residential tower to rise in Ortigas East. Set in an emerging urban address and designed with upscale features, Maple at Verdánt Towers will foster a vibrant live-work-play community for young professionals and families. 

Future residents will be able to enjoy upscale amenities, such as an outdoor pool, fitness facilities, a lounge, and play areas for children, as well as green open spaces, spacious walkways, and bicycle-friendly roads in the surrounding estate. Retail spaces on the ground floor of the tower will make essentials easily accessible for residents. In addition, they will also have access to a revitalized community with ongoing improvements in Ortigas East. 

Set for completion in Q4 of 2024, Maple at Verdánt Towers will stand at 42 storeys and house 692 units with offerings for studio, 1-bedroom, or 2-bedroom units, with the option of bi-level units with private gardens or a townhouse unit. 

While the next exclusive tour is in the works, interested clients may drop by the Maple at Verdánt Towers model units at the Ortigas East Showroom located in G/F Tiendesitas, Pasig City. The Ortigas East Showroom is open for viewing from 10AM to 9PM every Monday to Thursday, and 10AM to 10PM every Friday to Sunday. 

To discover more about Maple at Verdánt Towers and the rest of Ortigas Land’s residential projects, visit the official website at www.ortigas.land or send an email to info@ortigas.com.ph.  

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