Only two hours from Manila, Le Petit Baguio is a place with a casual, homey atmosphere. Located on the mountain at the edge of the national park of Bataan, it is recommended for those who are fond of nature and random walks. The resort is the “return to nature” dream of Frenchman Jean-Paul Chambouleyron who left France in 1994, and settled down here with his Lucie, who comes from Tala.
He built five bungalows on stilts, made from natural materials – bamboo and cogon – each with a nice terrace from where you can enjoy a view of the mountains. The interior decoration is personalized and pleasing, each room is wallpapered in different colors with hanging engravings of birds. Velvety carpeting, beds draped in snow-white quilts and enveloped in huge mosquito nets, all give the impression of comfort and well-being. Moreover, the nights are refreshingly cool. Each bungalow has a pretty bathroom. The main bungalow, where the meal are usually served, has a good view from its terrace. The cooking is done by Lucie who has mastered both French and Filipino cuisines. Meals are a moment to savor.
A little farm on the property supplies the resort’s daily needs – eggs, chickens, ducks, geese and pigs. There are also a large orchard of calamansi, guava, banana, breadfruit and pineapple. You can gather yourself these farm produce and buy them.
The drawback, however, is the nearby cock-breeding area, responsible for the very early morning wake-up calls at the resort!
Jean-Paul is an ardent fan of orchids. He has installed a large greenhouse sheltering a number of species, some of which are quite rare. Domestic animals are ever present – when we last visited, we saw a cat, a dog, horses and three wild boars rescued from the hunters.
Le Petit Baguio also offers the opportunity for an excellent study of nature – an activity which will interest and amuse the children. Some schools organize nature study classes here at certain times of the year.
How to get there
By sea and land (2.5 hours). One hour by Mt. Samat airconditioned ferry from the PTA Bay Cruise Terminal, CCP Complex, Roxas Blvd. in Manila to Orion, Bataan. Then one hour by Jean-Paul’s own car (good for 4 only) or by van/jeepney arranged by the resort (for more than 4) from Orion-Talaba-Orion.
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