When covering weddings out of town, we normally get housed at places where we are at least comfortable to take a little nap, charge batteries and later take a bath. This time we head over to Banaue in Ifugao Province. Banaue is also home to one of the wonders of the world which is the Banaue Rice Terraces. Although we were not able to take a glimpse of it, we at least were able to take a glimpse of the beauty of Ifugao.
For valentines I spent time at the Lalabs place back in Pampanga and was there for more than a week. I was invited by Blaze Sy who is the owner of Hijo De Foto Studios to be a 2nd shooter for this event. I was back in Baguio city by the 15th of February and had to travel to Banaue the same day to cover a wedding on the 16th. I’ll summarize the travel bits, our drivers were like the guys from that famous franchise or game, need for speed and man they drive the Van like they were fighter Pilots. For us who were accustomed to the Benguet-Vizcaya road it was nothing but for the uninitiated ah better drink those pills for travel sickness, windy roads plus fast drivers is not conducive to your guts, you might or will end up barfing.
We left Baguio late afternoon and we arrived in Banaue around 9:00Pm ISH and yes we were exhausted. Our Host the Couple took very good care of us. We were Fed really good food and was tended to. We were then shown to where we are going to rest for the night. At first I was expecting that we were just going to sleep on a mattress with sheets on and we’ll be Okay, but we were in for a treat. After the meal we went over to the Baleh Boble Guest House which is going to be our place for the night and at the same time it will be the location for the preparation are for the bride and groom for the wedding.
Baleh Boble means our house in the village. We were greeted warmly by Maam Claire who is the owner of the place. She gave us a brief tour of the place. The layout of the place looks like a small community with a garden and lots of plants, it gives you a relaxing vibe and the view from this place is majestic. The place has a very quiet and quaint atmosphere. It has a very rustic look and most of the stuff there like the signage and furniture, they are all hand made. Binur and Gut Mu cottages are the one’s seen above on the photo which can accommodate 1-4 heads. These 2 cottages were based on the design of the old houses of the Ifugaos but inside has the markings of Ifugao ingenuity combined with a modern touch. (I’m not going to spew out the details but you’ll definitely Love the charms of the place once you see it for yourself ^_^).
Pinnit cottage is their version of a Bahay Kubo similar to the low land houses not elevated but still has its charms specially the paneling of the would inside. Unfortunately I was not able to document the place but hopefully will update this Blog once I get the chance to get back and rediscover Banaue.
They also have an Original traditional house that was build beside the Binur hut. Its roof built with straws and its walls are paneled with wood with its old charms, but the only thing modern about it is the inclusion of an electric socket and a light bulb. Mostly set as a place for the divers but if one would like to request for a stay inside it I think they can arrange it.
Ma’am Claire also mentioned that the bathroom and rest room for both male and female were separated just like how the old houses were built. The Bathrooms have hot shower so no need to clench your teeth when talking a bath. She also mentioned that you can bring a tent and enjoy camping around the grounds and upon request they can set up a bonfire for you. If you prefer an indoor fire place you can also ask them to set it up at the pantry area. Bring a jacket since the place can be quite chilly at night and consider a rain check too since it may rain too.
The place too can be a very good sunrise spot since it is situated on top of a mountain and also a potential Milky way spot for people shooting the Milky way and astro-photography pics since there is very low light pollution in the area.
Now if you are wondering about the price Binur and Gut mu cottages is 1,800 for 1 to 2 pax. 2,500 for 4pax. Gut mu is 2000 for 3 pax. Pinnit cottage is 2,100 for 1 to 2 pax. 2,300 for 3 pax. For what the place has to offer the price is a good bang for your buck.
Regarding my stay here it was a slice of heaven. The beds were comfortable, relaxing pillows, the place is clean, with fresh sheets and warm blanket, working Hot showers, very unique details since they all made the other fixtures by hand and very accommodating staff.
After our meeting for job designations for the wedding I was able to sleep soundly. Even though it was only a couple of hours I rarely get the chance to have deep sleep in a new place. I hope I can be back here and explore the place a little more.
As for the wedding it was great, no hustle and bustles, the food really good and the reception went by like a breeze. Congrats again to our couple Jonathan and Eden, and Best wishes.
-Ben der done That!
You can reach Baleh Boble Guest House here.
Mobile: 0997 895 3798
Napitang, Tam-an Banaue 3601