El Galleon Beach Club is ably manged by Alla Nash, an Australian national who took over in 1994, when the resort only had 7 rooms. Today, the resort has 31 rooms set in a vast, steep area covered with lush vegetation. The property is at one end of Small La Laguna Beach just beside Sabang Beach — a location which offers wide views of the Bay of Batangas, facing the setting sun.
The traditional architecture of the building, using mainly nipa, bamboo and rattan is particularly well done, integrating the surroundings and distinguishing the resort from its neighbors. At the entrance, near the sea, is a building with stone pillars and nipa roofing that houses the reception, the restaurant, a conference hall, a reading corner and a billiard table. A lone coconut tree, saved during the construction of the resort passes through the ceiling.
Behind the main building, in a tiled patio by the pool and a nice fan tree, is a two-story building with 20 rooms. There are bamboo cottages bordering Small La Laguna, some of which have a nice views of the ocean. Stone steps under an arch of foliage lead to two rooms with private terraces, another two spacious rooms that are connected to each other by a balcony, a family room that is a little cramped and the honeymoon suite. An elevated structure perched at the hill’s summit houses four more rooms. It is naturally not recommended for the elderly.
A circular balcony overlooks the garden and the ocean, Despite the absence of air-conditioning, these rooms are very popular because they open out on two sides. The interior decoration is simple but pleasant: whitewashed walls with fish paintings, wicker-braided ceiling and furniture in bamboo, rattan or wood.
The cuisine, deliberately French, is excellent and Antoine, the French chef from Marseille, is quite a personality. He will surely tell you about his Mindoro Island tour on foot and by bicycle.
The hospitality and service at El Galleon is of high quality and Asia Divers, the dive school is very professional Even if a beach is almost non-existent on the resort, you can swim and snorkel just the same. Moreover, the sheltered cove of Big La Laguna, known to be exceptional for snorkeling, is just 10 minutes away on foot. The resort can also arrange for a banca to go to the white beaches dotting the coastline, or to snorkel at Coral Garden or Long Beach. Reservations for a jeepney to go to the countryside can be arranged from Sabang, 10 minutes away on foot.
How to get there
By land, sea and land, 3 hours by car/van from Manila to Batangas harbor. The resort can arrange fir a private vehicle to pick you up from the airport or your residence/hotel in Manila, or you can take your own car. The route is via South Superhighway. Get off at Exit 50A to Lucena, turn right to the Star Tollway, to Batangas get off at Lipa/Tambo exit, turn left to Batangas. At Batangas harbor, leave your car at the parking area.
Resort banca, one hour from Batangas harbor.
More photos here