Though I much prefer traveling for more than three days, there is something to be said about going out of town for the weekend to relax after a long week and recharge for another week ahead. When I received the invitation to stay for a weekend at Taal Vista Hotel, I didn’t hesitate to say yes, and even took advantage of using my voucher from Deal Grocer to extend for an extra day.
Tagaytay, due mainly for its proximity to the city, is a popular weekend destination for Manileños. That, and the cooler weather, that is just perfect for bulalo, which you can find everywhere in the ridge.
Our room was in the new wing of the hotel, which has a view of the Taal Lake. The room features a queen sized bed and a single bed, and can easily accommodate three adult, without it feeling too crowded. The bed was comfortable, as expected, and there was an extra pillow tucked in the closet, so if you’re like me who prefer to have two pillows when you sleep, you won’t have to call housekeeping to request for an extra.
Though the beds are heavenly, I quite enjoyed sitting on the arm chair by my bed, which was too comfortable I always end up yawning several times. My second favorite spot was outside in our balcony, looking out at Taal Lake. Nevermind the construction happening next door, looking out at that landscape was one of the simple joys I took from that weekend.
The bathroom was unlike the other hotel bathrooms I’ve encountered: there was no door! There was separate cubicles for the toilet and the shower, which is great, because it means the water from the shower stays within the cubicle and doesn’t spew all over the bathroom floor (I hate wet floors!). On the other hand, there’s this thing where you are conscious of every single noise you make in the bathroom, because it carries out to the bedroom. Unless of course, you’re THAT comfortable with your roommate, then by all means, be as loud as you want.
There was a huge fruit platter that welcomed us when we entered the room, along with a welcome message from Taal Vista’s General Manager, Mr. Walid Wafik. It was a nice touch, along with the guest comment card, which was also addressed to him after you fill it out.
It was a weekend spent eating, and that’s when Cla and I realized that eating at buffets three times a day can get overwhelming. Every weekend, the Café on the Ridge feature Heritage Cuisine, a small sampling of traditional Pinoy fare. There were roasted pork slabs, lechon, and this glorious ham. Yum.
There are also no shortage of local ingredients and flavors in their buffet. The salad station goes beyond the usual greens and dressings, with their ampalaya salad and dalandan vinaigrette. Same goes for their dessert, where they make their own ice cream. Watch out for their leche flan and siniguelas flavors!
After stuffing ourselves, we were only too happy to walk around the hotel grounds, checking out the different rooms and facilities. To my surprise, they have a pool, which was perfect when the sun was out and it was just hot enough for a dip. There is also a spa, where you can get different treatments to complete your weekend.
Still, the best feature of Taal Vista is its lawn and view deck, which has one of the best views of the lake. It was never devoid of people during the entire weekend, only clearing out on Monday, when most of the weekenders have left to go back to Manila. It made me happy to see kids running, rolling down the grass, playing hide and seek, despite there having Wi-fi throughout the entire hotel.
Now it’s your chance to experience Taal Vista Hotel! The gracious people of Taal Vista gave me a gift certificate, which I’m passing on to a lucky Just Wandering reader. To join this giveaway, simply answer this question in the comment section: What are you looking forward to doing at Taal Vista Hotel?
Anybody can join, provided you are in the Philippines and have a Philippine address that I can send the gift certificate to. The certificate is valid until July 31, 2013. Giveaway runs until 11:59pm, Friday, February 15, 2013. Winners will be chosen randomly, and announced on the Just Wandering Facebook page.