Tayo na sa Antipolo 2019
Antipolo City — Known as a catholic pilgrimage site, Antipolo is one of the famous tourist destinations in the Philippines. Just an hour away from Manila by car or public transportation, it is a favorite among urban dwellers who want a quick escape from the noise of the city. It was my first time visiting Antipolo City during the Antipolo Media Tour 2019 last August. We were able to discover some interesting places and as well as experience unique adventures.
So if you’re heading to Antipolo and need some ideas on how to experience the best things this town has to offer, here are some of my suggestions.
Mount Purro Nature Reserve
Our first stop, Mount Purro Nature Reserve, invites guests of all ages to soak in the power of nature.
Mount Purro Nature Reserve is managed personally by a family, Toto, Mrs. Baby, and their son, Toton. The place is designed to cater to both children and young at heart. Indoor and outdoor activities, such as game room, billiards, board games, and entertainment room where guests can watch TV or movies, etc. There are also outdoor activities to do like bonfire-making, swimming in the pool or the river, trekking, hiking, among others.
When we were there, the rain was pouring non-stop yet it didn’t stop us from checking out the surroundings.
Mount Purro Reserve also offers accommodation for those who want to spend the night and fully enjoy their facilities. You don’t have to worry about mosquitoes because all rooms have been covered with insect screen net. Furthermore, the place is quiet and peaceful.
Indeed, Mount Purro Mount Reserve is a perfect getaway not only for families and couples but also for individuals who want to be away from the hustle and bustle of the dazzling city and be surrounded by nature.
What else to love about Mount Purro Nature Reserve?
Personally, here are the things that I love about Mount Purro Nature Reserve:
- Loli’s Kitchen – This is where they cook delicious and Filipino foods using only fresh and organic ingredients. All their fresh produce are being delivered by the Dumagat Tribe.
- No WIFI and air-conditioned room – Yep, you read that right. It was the owners’ personal decision not to include WiFi so guests can fully enjoy, relax, and disconnect.
- 100% kid-friendly – Their facilities are best for families, putting in great consideration the enjoyment of the kids.
They offer special promos and packages like a Day Tour that includes hiking, swimming, some tailored activities, as well as food.
Adults: Php 950 per person
Children (3-7 y/o): Php 550 per person (M-F)
For more information, please check their official website and social media accounts at Mount Purro Nature Reserve.
Santiago Brewery and Malthouse
One of our main activities was a day tour to the Santiago Brewery and Malthouse. I find this part quite fascinating as I have never been to any breweries prior to this. Mr. James Gatlabayan, owner of Santiago Brewery and Malthouse gave us a tour where we learned the process of crafting beers, from how the equipment works, how he personally sources and creates the ingredients, to the actual beer-making procedures.
“Craft beer differentiates itself from ‘Macro’ Beer like San Miguel and Budweiser by being, small and independently owned, and by using traditional brewing methods with emphasis on unique flavors and high quality,” Mr. Gatlabayan said.
The idea to make his own beers began after a visit to a new brewpub in Baguio in 2014. However, he met some challenges along the way particularly on getting the ingredients needed for beer creation; malt, hops, and yeast. He did some research from which he learned that malt, the base ingredient of beer, is basically germinated grains. Thus, he decided to develop his own malt, while the other two ingredients, hops and yeast he was able to source from a small hobby store in Makati.
After creating his own malt, he built his own DIY brewing kit using parts that are available from nearby hardware and kitchen stores. He then proceeded into making the beer, his first homebrew ended up with over 8.3% of alcohol by volume (abv).
“This meant that I was able to succeed in making alcohol from the malts I made,” Mr. Gatlabayan shared.
What started out as a hobby became a profitable business. Initially, he became a supplier of malts to aspiring homebrewers. Eventually, he joined bazaars where he allowed people to have a taste of his craft beers. Due to the favorable feedback he received, he turned his beer-brewing hobby into a full-blown business.
Of course, we didn’t miss the chance to have a taste of his craft beers, which were named after Filipino weather conditions, Amihan, Habagat, Ipu Ipu, and Buhawi. When asked why he chose these names, he shared that these weather phenomenons usually coincided in those times that he was processing his beers.
My personal favorite is Amihan, it has a light taste with just the right amount of alcohol for light drinkers like me.
Santiago Brewery and Malthouse pride itself for being the only brewery in the country that exclusively uses its own locally malted grains for brewing its beers. Their Taproom will be open to the public soon via reservation.
For more information, you may contact Santiago Brewery and Malthouse on their Facebook official page.
Obra ni Juan
We were welcomed by Clark Wittich and his family upon arriving at Obra ni Juan’s showroom. I was fascinated by the beautiful apparel that were on display, particularly this one dress made from linen and cotton fabric. I loved it so much I wish I could take it home, unfortunately, the dress is not for sale (but they promised to let me know once they make another one).
Obra ni Juan is dedicated to creating simple yet elegant men’s apparel made of linen and cotton, comfortable to wear in all seasons. Their creations and pieces are carefully crafted, designed by hand printing making it impossible to imitate. I volunteered to try how the sewing works, which I definitely enjoyed.
In 1997, Obra ni Juan was just a small sewing shop (patahian) with only 10 employees. Fast forward to today, they now have at least 100 employees, many of which have been with the company most of their lives.
As the short tour progressed, I was able to have a chit chat with Mrs. Delzy to whom I share some similarities like the fact that we are both married to Germans. I found this out while I was inquiring if they have European-size apparel. Soon we were lost in fun conversation in German. What a very lovely woman!
Why include Obra ni Juan in your itinerary? Obra ni Juan does not accommodate walk-in guests to their warehouse/factory, nevertheless, they accept appointments or reservations. Everyone is welcome to their showroom, you just need to schedule your visit.
Obra ni Juan’s apparels are timeless and exquisite; an epitome of high-quality Filipino craftsmanship.
Luljettas Hanging Gardens and Spa
In the peaceful part of Antipolo lies the Luljettas Hanging Gardens and Spa. It was quite late and the rain was pouring heavily when we arrived, but our moods significantly improved when we were given a warm welcome by the smiling staff of the spa. We were directed to our rooms, each one equipped with a very comfortable soft bed.
Luljettas Hanging gardens and spa has exemplary amenities, such as the infinity swimming pool, sauna, jacuzzi, fish spa, etc.
Together with Marian and Carla, we enjoyed each facility especially the infinity pool. I recommend to anyone who is planning to visit Antipolo to try Luljettas’s services. It is truly one of the best options for a perfect holiday getaway. In fact, I plan to bring my mom next month for her 66th birthday.
You can also try their foot reflex which is 500php for 30minutes. Marian and I did try, of course! It was super relaxing!
When you visit Luljetta’s you wouldn’t want to leave, and when you do, you’d definitely love to keep coming back.
What else to know about Luljetta’s Hanging Gardens & Spa?
- They cater to special events such as weddings, birthdays, etc.
Check Rates and Availability
For more information, you may visit Luljettas Hanging Gardens & Spa at their official website and social media accounts.
Cafe Inday is an art cafe established by the late artist/ mom Elsie “ Inday” Reyes-Cadapan. It is currently managed by Inday’s daughter, Magel. Using art as a relief from an illness in which she suffered from for 13 years, ___ began collecting antique and art items over the years. These are all on display in the cafe that they sometimes sell on auctions for fundraising.
We were personally welcomed by Mrs. Magel at Inday Cafe. I could already feel the uniqueness of the cafe once I stepped in. Artistic creations are everywhere, some were made from old pieces that some people may perceive as useless. Mrs. Magel showed us her entire house full of art pieces, some are still in the process of making.
I got to pick mine for free, as a token by Mrs. Magel. And just like Mrs ** of Obra ni Juan, Mrs. Magel also has an aunt who is currently living in Germany. She told me that she’d like to introduce me to her once I move there. After the tour, we were treated to some local snacks like suman.
Anyone can visit Inday Cafe upon reservation.
A visit to the cafe will take you to an art haven, as well as gastronomic adventure. Each art piece of art will inspire you. Ms. Liz is a chef and loves making special dishes for her guests at Inday Cafe, each time, with an unknown menu to surprise the guests. She promises though that whatever she prepares, she will make sure that people will love it.
Food price starts 650- 850 per person at least a minimum of 4 guests.
Inday’s Cafe has up and coming exhibit on September 14, 2019.
For more information, contact Inday cafe on their official Facebook account at Inday Cafe.
Thank you to all our sponsors for this worthwhile trip: Mr. James Gatlabayan of Santiago Brewery, Mrs. Baby of Mount Purro Nature Reserve, Mr. Mon of Luljetta’s Hanging Gardens and Spa, Mr. Clark Wittich of Obra ni Juan and Mrs. Magel of Cafe Inday.
Antipolo is a beautiful place waiting to be discovered and with this guide, you’re good to go. I hope you and your loved ones will enjoy Antipolo as much as we did.
Watch our Tayo na sa Antipolo 2019 Youtube Video
All photos credit to Jaypee Maristaza