Ever since I found out about Lake Pandin in San Pablo, Laguna 3 years ago, I’ve been visiting it at least once a year to escape from Manila’s busy scene. We all need a little rest and relaxation from time to time and the time was ripe for another lake trip. I have been raving about this lake to my boyfriend, Danny, and been trying to find more reasons to excite him about Laguna and I sure did–how about a three-storey treehouse villa all to ourselves in the middle of a farm? Sure enough, with our bags packed and car fuelled up, we were off to San Pablo!
3 hours in, we have arrived to our home for the weekend.
Welcome to SITIO DE AMOR!
As we were welcomed by the resort’s manager, Magda, we were given a quick tour of Sitio de Amor on the way to our treehouse villa. And, voila!
This three-storey tree house villa was built around a Starapple tree and it was started by an Igorot, a member of a Philippine ethnic tribe. Jorge and Amor Bondad, owners of Sitio de Amor, soon stepped in to contribute to the villa’s aesthetics and finish the villa using woodworks that they made themselves. The tree, unfortunately, met its fate when lightning hit it so don’t expect to be picking fruits inside your villa early in the morning–Now it is nothing more but a decorative piece. I particularly love the balance of rocks and wood in this villa, it’s not your standard tree house but you still feel the vibe of being in one. We certainly felt at home in nature.
The first floor is quite bare but it gives you access to the lush garden surrounding the treehouse. One floor up, we see a large wooden seating area where guests can hang out, have a drink, have a soothing massage, or even set up cushions to have a nice siesta. This floor also has its own bathroom and a coffee table in a quiet corner overlooking the greenery. The third floor has a wider seating area and it also has a banig mat laid out on the floor, topped with throw pillows.
You can see most of the tree on the third floor with a part of its branch piercing through the bedroom’s wall. I apologize for not being able to take a photo of the room but you can see it here. Inside the antique and rustic-style bedroom are heirloom pieces, bedsheets with indigenous prints, and a spacious bathroom complete with a jacuzzi.
Over our family-style breakfast the next morning in the Bondad mansion, Jorge and Amor introduced themselves and shared with us fun and interesting facts about their home and the farm. We were personally toured around the whole farm resort afterwards.
Previously owned by Don Tomas Morato, this mansion was bought by the couple and transferred from Quezon province to Sitio de Amor. They restored it exactly as how it was left and added a few finishing touches such as the colorful glass window details on top of the classic capiz windows.
Amor walked me through her garden and personally showed me all the amenities of the resort to make our stay more enjoyable.
Let’s talk about the man-made lagoon. Amor told us that they empty, clean, and fill the lagoon with water from the Balanga river early in the morning every day to provide their guests with only the freshest water to bathe in. This takes farm vacation to a whole new level! BRB, submerging myself in more nature.
Bicycles and boardgames are free to borrow if you’re up for more fun. The Bondads made sure that their farm is free from WIFI and television sets so that their guests can really get to relax, breathe the fresh air, and savour the moment. Danny and I borrowed their Monopoly and Chess set for the evening–oh, we were up ’til 4 am alright just battling it out in Monopoly.
With regard to food and beverage, having arrived at 4pm upon check in, we asked if they will serve dinner for tonight. Magda told us that it was already too late to reserve and order food for dinner and we would have to find another place to eat. Since we didn’t bring any food or water with us, we had to drive for 30 minutes going to SM San Pablo in the town proper to dine in a restaurant and buy more food and water for our villa. We had to buy food that would not spoil because the villa also does not have a refrigerator nor a kitchen to cook our own food.
The Tree House Villa is the only solo villa in the property. The other rooms are scattered around the property, some sharing house space. There are 9 rooms in total at Sitio De Amor with a balcony each. Perhaps my second favorite room would be the Lanzones room, overlooking the lagoon.
As we wrapped up our stay at Sitio De Amor, Danny and I were getting ready for our next agenda — Lake Pandin!
It took us around 40 minutes to reach the starting point of Lake Pandin where we were approached by one of the kids who volunteered to be our tour guide, leading us to the rafts.
Check out how to get to Lake Pandin and what to expect on your trip HERE.
Finally, I was able to take Danny to this lake. It was just as beautiful as I remember it and he couldn’t agree more. 🙂
SITIO DE AMOR
Tree House Villa
Php 7,500 a night for 2 pax
3 Floors, 2 bathrooms, 1 airconditioned room with a hot and cold shower and a jacuzzi.
Additional person: Php 1,200 after 2 pax
Maximum Capacity: 20 pax (can request for mattresses)
- The Tree House Villa was spacious, clean, and beautifully designed
- No corkage fee on food and drinks that you bring to the villa
- Rate comes with free breakfast
- Silence and Privacy
- There are activities available to keep the guests entertained
- Lagoon’s river water is kept fresh
- The resort is conveniently located along the highway but it did not have signs pointing to where the resort is. You have to go through a narrow alley to reach the farm. I found that Google Maps was more reliable at pinpointing the location.
- They don’t serve dinner — or at least, you have to make a reservation much earlier
- Villa doesn’t have a kitchen and a refrigerator
- No WIFI
SITIO DE AMOR is located at Km. 88.8 Maharlika Highway, San Pablo City, Laguna, Philippines.
FACEBOOK PAGE: www.facebook.com/sitio-de-amor-farm-resort-113473045343144
My overnight stay at Sitio De Amor was sponsored but all photos and opinions are my own.