I've been hearing a lot of great things about Baguio and its beautiful weather ever since I was a child. It is arguably the hub of tourism in Luzon, especially during the month-long festivities of the Panagbenga Festival. It has the best thrift shopping places with its ukay-ukay stores. A food trip paradise with its numerous restaurants. And a weekend-getaway haven, with its numerous tourist spots and general accessibility from Metro Manila. Its year-round cool and temperate weather only adds to its charm as a tourist destination. Baguio is definitely one of the very few places here in the Philippines that has my ideal weather (not too hot and not too cold).
Last week, me and my blogger friends were invited by Azalea Hotels & Residences Baguio for a relaxing and fun "after summer" getaway. This was my first time in Baguio, that's why I don't really know what to expect there or what cool places to visit (but I did a little research of course), all I know is Baguio has a lot of pine trees and the temperature there is quite (can be very) cold. On our way there, my blogger friends been telling me about their past trips at Baguio (good thing to hype and keep me excited), the places they've been to, where they stayed and how to commute around Baguio. Their stories of their past trips really helped me ease the 5 hours travel time going to Baguio.
First day Itinerary
Meeting place at Mcdonald's Centris.
Checked in at Azalea Baguio at exactly 12 noon, perfect time to have some lunch at their Tradisyon restaurant. After lunch, we settled down at our own rooms. Luckily, me and Mike Miguel were assigned at the best room with a best view at Azalea Baguio.
" At Azalea Hotels & Residences Baguio in Baguio City, Philippines, you’ll bask in cozy retreats and also take pleasure in excellent offerings for a superb holiday experience. Here, all rooms boasts modern interior design and are generously appointed with travel essentials, such a kitchen and dining area, cable TV, mini-bar, and private toilet and bath. Absolute pampering is also ensured by amenities which includes a concierge, coffee shop, bar lounge, and banquet services" .
After we settled down in our respected rooms, me and Mike have decided to explore the whole hotel and took some ootds (ya know fashion blogger duties) before we leave for our next destination.
Me and Mike got too comfortable with our room, that's why we forgot to take nice pictures of it hehe. Thank God Trice Nagusara of lapetite.ph took some stunning room shots hehe ♥. Same room that me and mike stayed during our Baguio getaway.
Yes! it took us two hours to prepare and finish our ootd shots, haha nah I'm just kidding!. Some of our blogger friends were tired and sleepy when we arrived at the hotel, that's why it took us two hours to prepare and wake our senses up.
*View from our room*
We arrived at Cafe Yagam for some authentic strong brewed coffee and hot choco that is perfect for Baguio's cold climate. Their local coffee taste awesome and the food is great. I recommend this place if you like to hang out and have a conversation. They also sell Albums/EP's of local indie bands/musician and host acoustic events
Back in the hotel to chill and unpack all the stuff the we've brought for this getaway. Also hang out in our friends' rooms to talk about random things while waiting for dinner.
First dinner at Azalea Baguio's Tradisyon restaurant together with the whole crew.
Headed to the hilltop for some ukay-ukay (thrift shopping) realness. Baguio visitors, more often than not, would make it a point to buy used clothing from these ukay ukay stalls before they head back home. Even famous local celebrities are spotted here in Baguio shopping for ukay ukay goods.
To make our Azalea Baguio getaway a memorable one, the organizers of this trip decided to do an ukay-ukay challenge, where we need to come up with a creative ootd outfit with just a limited budget; 500 pesos to be exact.
This is the final result of our group ukay-ukay ootd challenge. Spent only 300 pesos for this whole outfit, each pieces only costs us 30 - 100 pesos. Totally lovin' Baguio's ukay-ukay scene.
Woke up very early to shoot some upcoming content for the blog and to make the most out of our second day at Azalea Baguio.
Breakfast at Tradisyon Restaurant
Bell Church Baguio
The Bell Church is located north of the downtown area of Baguio along the road leading to the town of La Trinidad, Benguet. Within its compound are intricately designed arches and buildings adorned with flags, bells and dragons. t is during the Spring Festival or what is more commonly known in the West as the Chinese New Year that local and foreign Chinese tourists flock to the Bell Church. Like all Chinese festivals, the date of the new year is determined by the lunar/solar calendar rather than the Gregorian calendar. The observance of the holiday falls on a different date each year and it usually varies from late January to the middle of February. This Chinese public holiday is usually observed for 3 days although the festival traditionally starts with the new moon on the first day of the new year and ends on the full moon 15 days later. The 15th day of the new year is called the Lantern Festival which is celebrated at night with lantern displays and children carrying lanterns in a parade.
As a fine arts student, visiting one of our National artists' museum and meeting him personally totally freaked me out. Ben Cabrera is one of my favorite artists in the world. I admire his techniques, aesthetics and the way he perceives art. He knows how to deliver artworks that never goes out of style.
Bencab Museum along Asin Road in Tuba, Benguet – the home of the fantastic artworks of Cabrera, the famous Baguio-based painter and printmaker. Below the museum is a farm and garden with an eco trail, mini-forest, and aviary with peacocks and other birds. Truly a wonderful place to go.
Now this destination totally gave me goosebumps after visiting it. I've heard a lot of spooky stories and true to life ghost encounters about this hotel. That's why I only took a few photos of the hotel's interior and its facade coz it gave me that heavy feeling like someone is watching you or that behind you kind of feeling.
The Diplomat Hotel is an old abandoned hotel located in Dominican Road, Baguio City. To date, it is one of the most haunted abandoned hotels in the world. According to the history, it used to be a vacation house and a seminary way back in 1911. Since it was established by the Dominicans, the place was called Dominican Hill. However, during the World War II, it was occupied by the fleeing refugees from the Japanese Army Forces. Japanese Forces later bombed the entire place resulting to an extensive damage. It was then reconstructed in 1947.
Back at the hotel for lunch and to rest for awhile.
Arca's Yard cafe
We visited this lovely coffee shop in Tiptop, Ambuclao Road. Arca’s Yard is a quaint and charming bed and breakfast place, café, library, art gallery and mini museum - rolled into one.
Every nook and cranny of the ground floor café is visually stunning, with all the art pieces and objects showcasing the Igorot culture. I would like to believe that the (Ibaloi) angel is in the detail. I was particularly impressed with Ninja’s wooden spoon collection that came from the various indigenous groups of the Cordillera mountain region.
Dinner at Tradisyon restaurant
Karaoke and beer pong night with the whole crew
3rd day Itinerary
Our itinerary for our 3rd day stay in Baguio isn't that jam-packed compared to our first and second day. Since the weather isn't that nice on our 3rd day and a lot of us were really tired and still sleepy from our karaoke night.
Breakfast at Tradisyon restaurant
Camp John Hay
One of the must visit places here in Baguio. Camp John Hay (CJH) is Baguio City's most popular visitor attraction. A beautiful resort in the mountains it features a world class competition Jack Niclaus-designed golf course (said to be the only course in the Philippines to have bentgrass greens) as well as hotels, a shopping center & a convention center, among other attractions.
Located on the south eastern side of the Summer Capital of the Philippines, its Main Gate is now located on Loakan Road, a 5-minute drive from its old location at the Upper Session Road-Loakan Road-South Drive rotunda.
Camp John Hay has a second entrance accessible via the Baguio Country Club road, which is closer to the other major tourist attractions of the City of Pines.
Lunch at Tradisyon Restaurant
Hotel tour around Azalea Hotel Baguio
Packed our stuff going back to Manila
Otw to Manila. End of trip.
Definitely one of the most memorable getaway that I've been to. Got to bond with my blogger friends and also met new friends from other category of blogging. The whole getaway is so smooth and fun, the weather is quite great and the people especially the hotel staff were very nice and accommodating. Will definitely come back again here at Azalea Hotels & Residences Baguio soon and explore new places that we never visited in this getaway. Thank you so much Azalea for having me and also to kuya Melo! ♥ ♥.
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