My family often takes trips with family friends and of course our extended family. It is nice to see the kids develop friendships with the children of my siblings, cousins and good friends. It brings extra warmth and fun to the trip. And what would be a better destination for such a big group but a whole resort to ourselves!
Last weekend, we had our family reunion (4 families) at Awilihan Private Resort in Tanauan, Batangas. It is just an hour's drive away from Makati even on a December weekend! I have attended an overnight birthday party of a friend here last year and fell in love with the place. I wouldn't exactly call it a resort because resorts sound grand and commercial. Awilihan is more like a provincial home, charming and modest.It enjoys the view of Taal Lake and Taal Volcano. Behind the property is Taal Lake but since it is not meant for swimming, and for security purposes, the gate to the lake is closed.
Awilihan offers a lot of activities, all included in the overnight rates we paid for. I like it that way, stress free! You don't have to pay with every move.
Kids couldn't get enough of the crystal clear pool! It was so clean, not a drop of leaf on the pool plus the water was so clean and without the heavy chlorine feel.
The kids jumped over the wood tiled plank for the nth time. I wouldn't recommend for adults to jump on this plank because it isn't deep enough. If you still want to jump, fold your knees. I did!:-)
One more pool shot, this time with the house. Btw, there is no life guard so keep an eye on your kids all the time. My 5 year old is able to tip toe around 1/3 of the pool. One side of the pool where the hut is, is I think 6 feet deep.
The mini-golf area is nice but the kids didn't have time to play anymore. They were in the pool the whole time!
Older kids can play billiards and table tennis. They also have a basketball court. It was nice to see our dads, 65 and above work on the hoops, reminiscing their childhood. All recreational equipment from basketball ball, rackets are provided for.
I love their lanai! We used to have a lanai similar to this in my parents house so it brings back warm memories. The lanai is where everyone gravitated because all the food was there!:-)
Take the kids around the whole resort, past the small cement bridge and discover these 2 huts.
Don't miss the view of the sunset. Photos are best taken at the hut by the pool. See my last photo below.
At night, the capiz lights are turned on which makes the place charming and cozy.
The pool at night time. It could use additional lights:-)
This is the main sala of the house. All the furniture are simple, cozy and tasteful which adds to the delightful experience. I also like the capiz windows which added to the provincial feel of the place. The clan hanged out in the air-conditioned living room at night for a singing marathon. The oldies had fun taking turns singing with the videoke and even belted out some duets to the merriment of everyone! My brother was also able to catch his basketball game from the cable TV.
Awilihan can accommodate up to 30 persons sleeping overnight. The sleeping area is modest but clean and comfortable. The common area is where all the cousins and kids slept. You can just imagine the chatting that went on in the common area. There are 2 other rooms (the oldies slept here) this time full beds (not just mattress), one room 4 single beds while the other has 3 single beds. The sala below can also be used as a sleeping area. There are ample bathrooms 5 sets all in all with the toilet separate from the shower area so more people can use at one time. Everything is provided for except for the towels and toiletries, bring your own:-)
Cooked food can't be brought in only snacks. I'm not sure if they are strict on this because we followed the rule and didn't bother to sneak in any cooked food since their food is very reasonably priced. We pre-ordered a boodle fight style of dining for our dinner. We had very generous servings of inihaw na tilapia, inihaw na liempo, molo soup and mango ensalada. The food is very good. The liempo is seasoned and grilled well, it wasn't tough to chew. The tilapia, well you can't go wrong with inihaw na tilapia. And their bagoong on the mango ensalada was gooood! It had a sweet taste to it.
I appreciate that they don't take advantage of the guests and jack up the prices of the food and drinks. The boodle fight dinner we had was only P4,760 good for 20 persons. The family sized sodas are just P 55 a bottle while a San Mig Light is just P32. Hindi ba, hindi nakaka-stress ang prices. And they thought of the guests comfort as they provided 2 water dispensers that dispenses hot and cold water for free. You can serve yourself water anytime as they leave fresh, clean glasses by the dispenser all the time.
Breakfast is also good and they even served our left overs from the night before. Order fried tawilis, a Batangas must-eat. And, ditch your 3-in-1 coffee and order their Kape Barako. P 250 good for 10 servings. Batangas is known for good coffee beans. I wasn't able to order it but someone recommended ordering the Pandan Iced Tea and Pandan Suman.
Service. The ates and kuyas are very courteous, helpful and efficient. I like it that they are there when you need them but is not hovering over you all the time. Thanks to them the whole resort is so clean and well maintained. Marilyn, the reservations person you will talk to and the person who will handle all your requests at the resort is so pleasant to talk to.
The whole clan found a charming and provincial getaway in Awilihan. Especially this little cutie pie of mine:-)
Awilihan Private Resort
Brgy. Ambulong, Tanauan, Batangas
Take SLEX (going South) and exit at Tanauan. From Makati you should be at the resort in 45 minutes to an hour. Use Waze. Don't pass C-5, always traffic!
Tel: 02-986-6496 / 0917-732-3445
Rates: P 19,500.00 for an overnight on a weekday. P 22,500 on a weekend. Good for 30 people. In excess of 30 persons, P500/person. Do let the staff know in advance how many people are coming so they can prepare accordingly. Check in is at 2pm and check out is at 12 noon. You can call in advance if you can come in earlier than 2pm check-in.
Tip: We divided the cost by number of people and not by family:-) some families kasi have 2 persons lang while others have 7. Mas fair, right:-)
Arrangements can be made if you want to use the lake for kayaking and paddle boarding. You can also have a Taal Lake tour arranged if you like. Personally, if you are just staying overnight, I reco just stay at the resort and enjoy it.