There was no telling of what awaits when one enters the narrow, one-way dirt road that leads to Sitio de Amor, a heritage and farm resort in San Antonio in the mountain city of San Pablo. Hidden and gem have been used to describe the place. And we couldn’t agree more.
The unmanned gate was swung open, likely expecting our arrival. The November sky was drizzling. Welcome to Sitio de Amor, said the first person we saw when we entered the property, ako po si Amor. Amor and her husband own the farm, which she said started as a weekend destination for the family. The resort is a huge garden, with curated plants, gazebos, furniture and landscaping in the center and a natural forest circling around—the place lying at the foothills of Mount Banahaw.
Over the years, they have expanded and enriched the resort by building a unique complex of rooms and houses (there’s a Balinese treehouse), relocating heritage houses from different parts of the country (ala Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar: tearing them down and rebuilding them in the resort), adding antique collections (a friend gifted them an Egyptian chair) and guest amenities (including a natural pool with water that comes from the nearby river (see topmost photo) and an expansive, lush garden).
One of the main attractions is the old house of Tomas Morato, a Spanish-born politician and a close friend of President Quezon and who became the first mayor of Quezon City in the 1940s. The old mansion was disassembled and moved from Calauag, Quezon. It is now considered the main house of the resort and where Amor and her husband live. Amor graciously included the house in the tour: its old world charm preserved very well.
Beautiful golden hour light complementing so well with the wood works in the house
Definitely highly recommended for nature and heritage lovers. San Pablo City is roughly just two hours away from Manila. You can book a room at Sitio de Amor via their website at http://www.sitiodeamor.com. The garden resort also accepts events.
*This is not a sponsored posting. Words and photos are mine.