The Farm at San Benito nestled at the foot of Mt. Malarayat on the outskirts of Lipa City, sits amids 47 hectares of lush fragrant greens, serene ponds and well manicured lawns. The spa resort was conceptualized and conceived in 2001 or 2002 primarily as the country’s first alternative medical center that employees non-traditional healing techniques.
Upon entering the Farm, one is immediately enveloped by nature, green as far as the eyes can see. Visitors will notice that much thought has been placed into the landscaping of the South East Asian-inspired structures. All the facilities, be it the reception hall, the restaurant, library, spa, gym or villas, open up into the outdoors, maintaining and calming balance between human comfort and nature.
From the reception, guests instantly get a taste of the architecture used throughout, contemporary South East Asian. The health resort can accommodate up to 55 clients only. The Farm has a choice of 5 different kinds of accommodations, each differing in style, size and price: the Anahaw Villas, the Garden Villas, the Sulu Terraces, the Palmera Suites and the Master Villa. All rooms are fully air-conditioned, well-maintained and appointed, feeling cozy but not cramped. Each garden villa has a round bath tub in its own private garden out back. The Sulu Terraces designed after rice huts of the Southern Philippines, have an open seating area on the ground floor. The Palmera Suites’ shower opens up into the sky. The Anahaw Villas, the only ones that can accommodate more than three occupants, feature a loft with two beds that look out into the sky via the skylight. The Master Villa, only available through special arrangement, comes with an indoor garden and its own pool.
Guests venturing out through winding paths into the tropical garden discover quaint little meditation corners scattered about in strategic places. Two of them stand out: an open nipa hut in the middle of the large pond bu a sky-high, geyser-like fountain and a cozy deck lined with cushions, blanketed buy a curtain of hanging vines by the Waterfall Pool.
The sole restaurant is the 85/15 Gourmet Restaurant, which serves all vegetarian fare and is a vital part of the whole wellness philosophy of the Farm. “85/15” refers to the food being served 85% raw and 15% cooked. The food here may very well dispel any notions that eating healthy is bland and boring. Indian samosas, Mexican burritos, five-layer quiche and non-dairy chocolate ice-cream are some of the delectable and often surprising flavors and aromas. The restaurant offers seat meals which includes buffet breakfasts, 5-course lunches and 3-course dinners as well as a la carte dishes and numerous fruit drinks. The portions are large and filling
Different wellness packages, from day trips to multiple-week health stays and detox programs, are available, the most popular being the Overnight Wellness Package which includes overnight accommodations, three meals, a live blood analysis, an hour’s massage and a foot scrub or reflexology. Room only arrangements are also available.
How to get there
By land (2 hours) from Manila, take the South Superhighway and get off at Calamba exit no. 50A. Down the road, turn right ti the Star Tollway and get off at the Lipa/Tambo exitthe end of the expressway and head towards Lipa City. Gear left at the fork with a Mc Donalds, and make a right when you see Max’s Restaurant to your left. Turn left at A. Bonifacio St., another left to Latag Study Camp, right to Bgy. San Jose, left to Nicetas Katigbak sign, and finally a right by a telephone post to get to he Farm. There are signs to guide you once you get into Lipa City. The Farm also offers a shuttle service to and from Manila which can be arranged through their Makati booking office.
More photos here