We eagerly got out of the van and rushed to the beach to catch another beautiful sunset in Antique. Finally, it was the end of another draining yet well-spent day in the province. On my first step in the receiving area of the beach resort, I was welcomed by the expansive and tropical-themed lobby, with the bamboo-weaved ceiling adorned with large ornaments made of indigenous materials that cover the lighting.
Presence of several trees around the resort such as coconuts, pandan and langka, add to the cold breeze coming from the sea that ventilates the lobby and the entire resort. Pandan Beach Resort is owned and managed by Gigi Bautista, who worked as an Advertising and Promotions Manager of Philippine Airlines before going back to her home province to build her dream beach resort. She is also active in promoting the different attractions and activities of Pandan, Antique. Gigi makes it a point to personally welcome the guests, accompany them to their rooms and join them during meals.
From a private vacation house, it was expanded into now having 7 suite rooms with each named after the five towns of Antique (Tibiao, Culasi, Sebaste, Pandan and Libertad) and two Aklan municipalities (Buruanga and Malay) comprising the Northwest Panay Peninsula Natural Park.
We were booked to stay in Tibiao Room. The fully air-conditioned room has a queen-sized bed, two single beds, a flat-screen cable television, a walk-in closet and a huge toilet and bath equipped with hot and cold shower. The common among the rooms are the colorful paddles hanging on selected parts of the wall.
MARQUESSA’S BISTRO AND BAR
Located in their Dulungan Hall is Marquessa’s Bistro and Bar serving a wide array of food and beverages. The in-house chef cooked adobong pusit, buttered shrimp, grilled blue marlin, binabak, cassava suman, and a bean stew for us.
Binabak stood out among the other dishes since it was my first time to try and enjoy it. It is a shrimp delicacy made of pounded river shrimps locally called as patuyaw and steamed along with young coconut meat and ginger. All flavors were fused to create a magnanimous taste: sweet, spicy and salty. The bean stew, on the other hand, is the common Filipino dish but has chicken and chopped banana pith (ubud) as added ingredients.
Aside from the rooms, the beach-resort has perfect places to spend different times of the day. One of these is a hammock suspended between two coconut trees near the restaurant that will make you fall asleep during the afternoon with the classic jazz music being played in the background as waves are crashing on the gray-sand shoreline of Pandan.
If you overslept on your soft and relaxing bed, you can just laze at the lounge areas located just outside your door with comfy couches and nice furnishings. Ideal spots to ignore your online works (resort has WiFi connection by the way) and a best place to catch up with your books while waiting for the sun to paint a colorful horizon during the late afternoon.
Nature tripping is also an option with the beach resort offering some tour packages in checking out the attractions of Pandan: Malumpati Health Spring and Exploration of Bugang River.
Antique has a lot to offer when it comes to nature and adventure destinations and activities, but a stay in Pandan Beach Resort will make the experience a lot better. I tried to enjoy a fantastic sunset, lounge in the different parts of the resort, and even sample a unique Kinaray-a food. Indeed, Katahum Kang Antique.
PANDAN BEACH RESORT
Brgy Dionela, Pandan, Antique
Contact No.: +6336-278-9379 / +63917-580-9648 / +63922-812-7863
* Our stay at Pandan Beach Resort was part of the Antique Heritage Tour sponsored by the Katahum Tours with the cooperation of the Department of Tourism Region VI and the Antique Provincial Tourism Office. Special thanks to Ms. Gigi Bautista, owner and resident manager of the beach resort.