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May 31, 2008

Summer Outing To The Grand Villa Resort In Laguna

It was a good, sunny day when our family went to Laguna and traveled through winding roads to get to Grand Villa Resort and Butterfly Centre. It was our last get-together outing before the summer season ends in the Philippines. Together with my parents (my Dad who came back from Kuwait, also an OFW), my brother, my sister-in-law, their son and my nephew, and the immediate family of my sister-in-law, we had the entire day enjoying each other's company and as well as exploring the beauty of the vast area of this resort.

I was impressed with the place when we got there. I like the way the garden landscapes were integrated in the design space of the resort. There were lots of greens - flowers, trees, and shrubs. Might be because of the flourishing garden scenes in and around the place, I noticed some uncommon birds flitting and seemingly playing in dense foliages. The place has a picturesque mixture of nature and architecture which delighted the photo bug in me.

Statue of two kids bathing near the water pump with their pet dog

Before the entrance to the main resort pool, we passed by this trio of metal statues (above image) right in front of the spa building. The carved expressions of the kids sort of remind everyone to relax and enjoy their stay in this resort.

Arches with vines at the entrance towards the main pool

This entrance leads to the main pool of the resort which is also the pathway towards the dining area and mini-bar. There are lots of hanging vines entwined around the metal arches of this entrance.

The mermaid fountain near the entrance to the pool

Again at the entrance, we passed by another statue, this time of a sitting mermaid on a rock. Amidst the background of trees and plants, the mermaid looked more (out of place) like a welcoming guardian of botanical nature instead of the aquatic type.

A cool wooden shelter with ladder and attached with wheels

I don't know exactly why this structure has wooden wheels at the sides, but it does appear like a cross between a calesa and an elevated waiting shed. There are two of these inside the main pool area. Most of our group liked to relax and sit within the cool premises of the shelter.

Innovative washers using jugs as faucets

It's quite innovative to form these washer faucets (above image) as jugs (as if somebody is pouring water over your hands after you twist the knobs).

Yellow bell flowers entwined around the metal grids and poles

As mentioned before, there is a variety of flowering plants found in this resort. Bright yellow bells are some of these flowering plants found in abundance here (image above).

Wooden benches with clay jars near the pool walkways

Old, irregularly shaped woods were used to form the benches scattered around the garden area lining around the swimming pool. I thought the landscape artist did great with this place.

How about the swimming pool? We did not come here just to view and enjoy the garden scenery. Here are some of the pictures of the swimming pool area.

Clear swimming pool

Huge water fountain with playful dolphins painted on the wall

Water dribbles down this huge pool structure (wall painted with playing dolphins) at the laddered sides. Water also falls from above the sheltered portion of the structure. The falling water has enough (bearable I say) pressure to provide a massaging effect to one's tired torso and shoulders. This is not suitable though for kids though.

Water spewing out from top of umbrella like pool shades

Small girl by the swimming pool's edge

Besides bringing along some food and drinks, our group also opted to order additional noodle dishes like the tasty pancit bihon (below) and pancit canton at the nearby restaurant and mini-bar. The staff was friendly and accommodating and the service was fast.

Tasty pancit bihon cooked by the attending restaurant staff

Next post, other plants, trees, and the butterflies of this resort.

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