Valentino Resort and Spa
Thursday, April 26, 2012
Our group got a bit bored of our monthly dinners and decided to take it a notch. We opted to spend our March get-together out of town. Since we’re now scattered among four companies, everything was communicated via emails and text messages. We even conducted a survey to know everybody’s pulse. We were supposed to go to Eagle Point which initially got the most number of votes. But some had a change of heart when they found out that the accommodation is quite pricey. We settled for the next choice which was Valentino Resort and Spa.
On the day of our out-of-town trip, nobody complained even if we were an hour behind schedule. At least, it gave everybody plenty of time to have breakfast.
Joie paid the reservation fee and also took charge of booking a van. She did a really good job because everybody was comfortably seated. And Kuya was a very careful driver. He was also familiar with our destination.
It started raining while we were in SLEX. Because of the cool weather and the early call time, everybody fell asleep. I had to wake them up when I saw the resort’s sign telling us that we’re just a few meters away from it.
We arrived at the resort earlier than the check-in time. The receptionists are really friendly especially the pregnant lady who does not forget to seal every conversation with her sweet smile. Customer service would have been perfect if not for the middle-aged lady who made a comment that got to my nerves. They initially told us that we need to wait until 2pm before we could enter our rooms. We didn’t demand or even requested them to bend this rule. After a few minutes, they told us that the rooms are already available. When Joie confirmed if we are already allowed to use the rooms, the lady said, “Oo nga, pinagbigyan na nga namin kayong mag early check-in e.” It's not what she said but how she said it. Nobody seemed to care about the lady’s unwanted remarks so I decided to let it go. (It was after the trip when I found out that Kriska also got irritated.)
We were asked to wear wristbands all throughout our stay. The staff put the first wristband when we checked-in and they gave us a set of new wristbands with a different color to be used the following day. I know that it's for the resort's security but wearing it all day long is quite uncomfortable. And Kriska was so concerned about the out-of-place tan line that it would cause. Nyaha!
Our rooms are facing one of the resort's swimming pools which gave me the feeling that we own it. I would usually daydream about standing in my mansion's balcony overlooking my gigantic swimming pool while a secretary is standing beside me and telling me how my wealth is effortlessly increasing. But as a matter of fact, there's some truth to that. Minus the secretary and my growing wealth, we actually owned the pool that day because I don't remember a time when we needed to share it with the other guests.
The view from our rooms is priceless! Nothing beats the serenity brought by the sight of trees and the calming sound of the flowing water.
It started to rain so I was hesitant to go swimming. Mababasa rin nga naman ako, so ano pang pinagkaiba? Haha!
Just so you know, my mother NEVER allowed me to play under the rain. I always teasingly upbraid my mother over dinner that she never really allowed me to be a kid by not letting me play under the rain and even ride a bicycle. Realizing that it's my opportunity to experience it without looking stupid, I got out of the room to swim despite the rain. I saw that everybody was already in the pool and they kept on shouting that the water is so cold.
There's also a bigger pool and a kiddie pool a few meters away from where we stayed. More than swimming, we actually spent most of the time chatting while we're dipped in the very cold water. It feels so nice to be reunited with the friends I made over the past six years. We talked everything under the
sun rain, ranging from their work issues and even reminiscing some long forgotten experiences. I realized that I know even the smallest details of how Jeff and Joie became a couple more than Joie herself!
Not far away from the pool is the resort’s playground.
We were supposed to get the quad sharing room. But when Joie and I checked the photos of the rooms on their website, we realized that the two beds will only be good for two people. When Joie called the resort, they confirmed that only two people could sleep on the beds and that additional mattresses will be provided. Breakfast will also be served to two guests. So bakit pa naging quad sharing? :p
When we entered the room, we saw a complete set of basic toiletries and fresh towels on top of the bed. I wasn't so impressed with the room but more importantly, it did give me a good night sleep. Before the one I had at Valentino, I couldn't remember the last vacation I had which rewarded me with a relaxing eight-hour sleep.
The air conditioner is working perfectly fine and the room has a small walk-in closet. The room has a small TV. Unfortunately, it only shows local channels and the reception is quite bad.
The restroom is clean and spacious. But when I took a bath, I noticed that it doesn't have a bathroom drain. I was careful not to drop anything because it would definitely be unrecoverable. Also because of the absence of the floor drain, there's a foul smell coming from the drainage.
Each room has a phone although it only connects to the restaurant and the reception. We had to knock on each other's doors or send group text messages when we needed to meet up. The room of Jeff and Joie was our constant meeting place! :p
Though the rooms lack glamour, the resort compensated it with the relaxing vibe that it offers to guests. Some of the bigger rooms are arranged to make the guests feel as if they're in a suburban village.
Unfortunately, we weren't able to try both the gym and spa. I was expecting it to be a hectic overnight trip but everybody fell asleep early. Either we were tired from work or it's just a sign that we're getting old. :p
Another thing worth mentioning is the resort's restaurant. The food and service are both commendable that I decided to dedicate a separate post for it. We had no other choice but to eat at the restaurant because the resort is a bit secluded. When we attempted to go out for dinner as Marwin suggested, the locals directed us to a restaurant. We were driving for almost twenty minutes along a very dark road but we couldn't find a single lighted establishment. We then decided to just eat at the first eatery that we'd find. But the only choice we had at that time was an eatery that only serves goat dishes so it became a unanimous decision to just go back to the restaurant.
Whether you’re with a special someone or a with a big group, Valentino Resort and Spa is a good place to relax and unwind. If you simply need a quick escape from the hustle and bustle of your city life, I recommend this place.
Valentino Resort and Spa
San Jose, Batangas
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