So much for a weekend in Tagaytay.
Being easily traversed to, Tagaytay isn't remote to us anymore, we celebrated family occasions and just about any special celebrations. An hour or less will get you at the ridge from Manila, without traffic and with a usual stop-over for steamed corn on the cob (Mais puti is my favorite).
My youngest daughter, Danica had her dedication at Max's, we had our first celebration of wedding anniversary year's ago at Gerry's Grill and back then we would have picnics at The Picnic Grove or the Tagaytay Highlands on Holy Weeks or New Years. I'm sure you also a have a story somewhere in your vast memory about a special occasion here also, a wedding perhaps?
This time my daughter, Danielle-not-Daniel (spinned-off from Psuedonymous Bosch novels) and the whole family celebrated her birthday here. She doesn't like having parties and all. She loves lazying around over a good movie and an intimidatingly-funny novel, so thinking about this is easy.
Thank God for the internet and for hotel deals website, for hotel reviews and blogs, we get to check first where to stay and get good values.
Upon searching for hotel promos on the net, we found Lee Boutique Hotel with deals at Hotels.com. Getting the deal is a breeze with an efficient credit card. But before I bought the deal, I called the official LEE Boutique Hotel numbers to validate the information. When purchasing a hotel room on the internet, you need to downsize your search and make it specific. Reading their policies made my purchasing power even greater. I have read that adults are considered to be having an age above 17. So if your kids are below seventeen, they are still considered as a child. Is that just me, have I read that wrong or what?
Too make this rant short I purchased an Executive Room. When I do this I don't consider my two little ones on the purchase, meaning I searched for a room for four adults and this was referred to me. I have four kids, two of them are bigger than me already and are in their teens, so we consider them as adults already. The executive room, being the lowest priced room fit for us, was what I thought could be most suitable, so I got it.
Here are the downside though.
When I payed it, the tax and service charges which are not in the promo, got it to almost P 5K. When it was only P3,200. Well for some that may be cheap already.After the payment was confirmed, I got an email and an SMS confirming my payment and booking. Only to find out that the Executive Room only has one Queen-sized bed or an option to change it to two twin sized bed. Also, the room only accommodates 2 adults and 2 kids. Now, that can't be, so I hailed myself to talk to the admin but wasn't able to have the luxury.
A weekend with my kids could be expensive, and in Tagaytay.
We couldn't take having this vacation to be ruined, not even our budget.
So as we get there, the personnel talked us into getting a supreme room, one that is separate and will have two other adults separated from our group
Tsk, tsk, thinking quickly, my husband thought of getting another hotel for the two of us, one that's cheap. Bracing myself for the disappointment, I had the kids checked in and settled and explaining why we could stay with them this time.
Another fear came to me, what if in the middle of the night, my Dana suffers form hypoglycemia? Driven also by the thought if I could settle in the room we might get.
But I have to do away with those negative thoughts and think of other ways for all of us, and I prayed.
Clean and unstained sheets are always on my lookout for a truly comfortable hotel, and not too much ado on the walls, that might keep us up or have our eyes busy. When I see a hotel room, it has to be a place where I could quickly doze off and completely sleep throughout the night. And I think that was achieved by my kids, that is.
The lights are controlled so us just to help you go around without bumping in to something, One good point of a boutique hotel by the way is the theme that is incorporated to the rooms. In some hotels, they would have a design of a Victorian era, or say a garden theme with lavanders or cherry blossoms. Come to think of it, this is not too shabby as compared to Victoria Court's themed rooms (which priced more considering you only stay for predicted hours.
A cozy sofa to warm you if your over-stuffed on the bed and a coffee table on the other side made the room more appealing. Lastly, if you need to have some fresh and cool Tagaytay air, a veranda is another space for you. Too bad no view of the famous Taal Lake and Taal Volcano can be spotted, unless you take the room upstairs, our room was situated on the ground floor.
You may probably be asking where my husband and I had our sleep. Surprisingly, another hotel sits beside Lee Boutique. A quaint, simple bed and breakfast hotel which is cheaper than the other. And the price is right. But of course don't expect the luxury you get from Lee or some boutique hotels or uprising expensive B and Bs. Since we were to explore Tagaytay more and just sleep to regenerate, this suffices. Have I mentioned they also have a pool and jacuzzi and a spectacular view of the lake.
I didn't get to take a photo of our room, but, I was able to sleep, the bed is wide and comfortably soft with two pillows. The rooms have their own bathroom, with hot water shower. It smelled nice and clean but you can tell that it's an old property. Well usually hotels,resorts and restaurants too used to be private properties typically called rest houses.
So accommodations are straightened out, now time to celebrate. We had our dinner at Shakey's at the Robinsons Mall beside Mountain Ridge Hotel. A few years or months more, another mall and hotel will be erected and more restaurants and amusement centers will gain its audience in Tagaytay.
After our dinner, to our amazement, the staff of Shakey's gathered up and sang Happy birthday to me and Danielle. They also gave us a cup each of sundae with candles to blow. Hard to find establishments with these kind of personal touch form the staff! So glad we had my daughter's birthday dinner there! Thanks and kudos to you guys, you made us so special.
Here, Danielle blows up her candled ice cream. This is not her birthday yet actually, the day after this was the real day.
Everyone seemed to love what we had at the joint, incomparable contentment and joy!
After this we made a quick stroll on the mall, where a weekend bazaar was situated at the courtyard, a good place to get pasalubong and in our case a snack for the kids while watching TV at the hotel.
Bhogs and I however, made it just in time at Verbena Restaurant at the Discovery Suites for our time without the kids for a late cheese fondue. A soothing and invigorating one and a half hours massage for us both at Banahaw massage and Spa then followed after. The massage, evasive enough to relax our tired brawns for only P 350 each, for a non-member service.
A simple continental breakfast for two are included in the hotel charge and here is a photo of Danielle's plate
Our check out time the following day was at 12 noon, so we took off without any trouble and head down south to Paseo de Sta. Rosa to bring kids to Ryuma Restaurant and do some Koi feeding at the Solenade at Nuvali.
If you are dubious about how much we have splurged on a weekend as such, let me give you a rough computation:
Accomodation: Lee Boutique: less than P5, 000 (Charged to CC) **
Aroma P 1800 including breakfast
Shakey's (free/with GC, just some of the perks of being a blogger)
breakfast for the kiddos P 300
snacks P 100
gasoline P 1500
Birthday lunch at Ryuma P 1500 (desserts were free) and kids took home toys given
Total: roughly P5 000 ++
Time with kids: PRICELESS
Fun and enjoyment with the family: PRICELESS
Possibilities on how everything turns out to be: LIMITLESS, the best however are the ones where you can soar above any circumstances, proving that there will always be answers to any difficulties as long as you maintain a positive and faithful disposition.
So much to see in Tagaytay, here are photos which we took during the travel...Will try to do more review of new places to see, and experience.