Friday, April 21, 2017

Airbnb Finds: On Anniversaries, Breakfast Wines, and Pink Vests

I've never liked the beach.

Inside human
 Maybe because 2 days after coming from the beach there is still sand every freaking where.

Or maybe because I did not like swimming in fish pee.

Either way, when I was young, I was terrified of boat rides and would not even join my sisters for snorkeling. No amount of sibling pressure can make me don a life vest and get my hair wet with salt and water.

And then I married a merman.
Blub blub bubbala
Since I promised to love him through hell or high waters (literally), I thought of giving the beach another shot. Thus began the long story of how I fell in love with the sea that started around 5 years ago.

No, I am not going to Ted Mosby it and start from the beginning. This is the part where a home we found in Mabini, Batangas via Airbnb truly made me feel at peace with the water.
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The Place: Place was listed as "Best Beach & Scuba Diving Manila"

For our first year as husband and wife, we wanted to celebrate our anniversary with our baby dog Aika in a secluded place near the sea. Since most hotels do not allow pets (boo!), we resorted to Airbnb and found this lovely home with 3 rooms right smack in front of the Balayan Bay in Mabini, Batangas.
DTM boy and his #wokeuplikethis look at our Airbnb find
And boy was this secluded! The only down side was that you had to trek a gazillion steps (I exaggerate because I am dramatic that way and also because I did theater in college) before you get to the actual place but the staff will assist you with your stuff so you only had to worry about your body weight as you climb down the supermegabajillion steps.

The Rooms

When you book this via Airbnb, you get the entire place (minimum of 2 nights) all to yourself. It has 3 rooms, good for 2 pax each, allowing 6 people to enjoy this slice of heaven.
Room 1
Room 2 (which also pretty much also looks like room 3)

Room 1 from the veranda

Stairs leading to rooms 1 and 3

That kick-ass view of Balayan bay from the cabana right in front of room 1

My favorite person and my favorite dog
The Staff

...were all levels of awesome! For our food, all we had to do was bring the ingredients and the katiwala (caretaker) of the beach house cooked everything for us. Her cooking was amazing and her stories about the place and her life were also interesting. You can also tell that she was proud of her work as she also recounted stories of other families that spent their holidays in their wonderful piece of Batangas paradise.
We only need 5 minutes to eat because we don't chew

They also love furbabies and understand that they are (not like, but are) family. When we were about to kayak with Aika, the helper who was assisting us prepared a life vest for our baby dog too! I was about to hug kuya when he presented us with Aika's life vest but stopped myself because (1) I did not want to violate his personal space, and (2) that would've been hella awkward.
Aika with the helpful and accommodating kuya of the place
Getting ready for her kayak ride!
Too bad I did not get a photo of the ate and her daughter who made our meals daily. Maybe next time.

The Amenities and Things To Do

They offer free use of their kayak, sail boat (just replace the gas), and snorkeling gear. And if Rudy is there (the owner of the home whose life story is as vibrant as his personality), he can also give wind surfing and wake boarding lessons!
We will definitely try this the next time!

I have no idea what we were looking at here
And if you want down time (which we were in dire need of), you can just laze around the veranda and have breakfast wine without judgment.
Breakfast wine. It's a thing.
I also hung out one morning in the bahay kubo with hammock in front of the shore just to listen to the waves.
I told DTM boy that I wanted this at home. We live in a condominium.

The beach is full of corals and rocks but the water is crystal clear and you can snorkel every morning in your lonesome, the whole bay is yours! #LittleMermaid
Speaking of snorkeling, we also rented a boat (all arranged by the wonderful staff of the place) and went to Sombrero Island to get up close and personal with the fishies albeit the strong current.
Can you guess why it is called Sombrero Island?
Holding on so tight to the katig (outrigger - yes I had to Google that ish) lest I be dragged by the current

Photo does not do justice to the majesty and beauty of the corals, sorry we forgot our red filter.
There was also a nearby white beach that rents out cottages so you can eat there after a day of beach fun.
Yes my snorkeling goggles had prescription lenses #LegallyBlindLife

Aika's Lion King pose

She kept on coming back to the water! DTM boy and I were amazed that she loved the water because she hates taking a bath.
Aika exploring her island
The Price

For approximately PHP 8000 a night (good for 6 pax), this was a steal.

To get to their Airbnb listing, go here.

The Bottom line

Obviously, DTM and I will return to this place. Maybe expect an update when we finally try wind surfing and wakeboarding. Or maybe not if I get lazy and forget to follow through with this blog post as evident by my really sporadic posting schedule.

P.S. DTM boy forgot his knife (he gets attached to his kitchen utensils) and Marian (the other owner, wife of Rudy), graciously found a way to return the knife to him at no cost. :-) Thanks, Marian!
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Another one for the books as my merman slowly turns me into a mermaid.

At least now, whenever I sing Part of Your World during karaoke nights, I feel a tad more legitimate and Ariel-like. *wink*

Have you tried Airbnb? Do you want more Airbnb reviews? Want to get a PHP 1,100 discount on your first Airbnb booking? Then click here, use my link and sign up: CRAMOS 

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