Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Kapuluan Vista Resort - Calm amidst the Chaos

Pagudpud, to my mind is the Boracay of the North.
For many years we had frequented Saud Beach until uber-commercialism
drove us to look for something quieter.
Two years ago, we re-discovered Blue Lagoon Beach.
I remember the first time we saw this gorgeous stretch of white sand more than
ten years ago.
There were only a few make shift huts and it seemed totally isolated from everything.
Sadly, Blue Lagoon is now just as commercialized as Saud Beach, with a monstrous huge concrete hotel, dozens of
cottages offering "homestay" accommodations, mini apartelles, etc.
Greed, land grabbers and schemers have taken over.
But, it still boasts of a wide and clean white sand beach,
clear and blue waters.
Because it is nestled between the mountains and the sea, you can tune out and focus
on the still gorgeous scenery that surrounds Blue Lagoon.
And if you take the road all the way down to the end, you'll come upon an oasis of calm --
so different from the many resorts in the area.
This is Kapuluan Vista Resort.
Kapuluan is a 15 minute walk past the main beach area but this means it is tucked
away from the maddening commercialism of Blue Lagoon.
The beach area across Kapuluan affords you a great view but
it's rocky and not suitable for swimming. The waves though are great for
surfing. The place has become a magnet for surfers, local and foreign alike.
It is the surfing in this area that lured the owners to come home from Southern California to try and
build a relaxed and relaxing vibe -- mix pleasure and an enviable lifestyle with a thriving business.
The result is a well thought out resort -- from the native yet contemporary architecture to the minimalist
but comfortable, tasteful rooms to service that is gracious and personalized, to an expansive cuisine
that is Ilokano by way of California.
Thus, you can order regional specialties like bagnet, pakbet or dinakdakan.
Or you can go Cali-Mex and have the huge burritos (chicken, lobster, fish or steak)
which are made with freshly picked veggies from the owners' organic garden.
Or, because you are steps away from the beach after all, you can have grilled seafood -- whatever
is freshly caught that day.
The days go by slowly in Kapuluan. Since we time our vacation in June -- we practically have the
resort to ourselves. It's a wonderful place to relax and recharge -- and the highlight of our
Northern Road Trip.

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