I don't write about places I don't like, but I just had to do this out of frustration and disappointment. I recently went to Lago De Oro in Calatagan in Batangas. I wanted to pursue my wakeboarding dreams and practice more to be able to stand up on a board. The last time I tried wakeboarding was in Cam Sur, and I lacked so much time in trying to stand up. So when JP and Liza invited me to go to Lago de Oro, I immediately said yes.
Lago de Oro offered us a full board overnight package that included a whole day's use of wakeboarding facilities for P1900 per person for a minimum of 4 people. I thought it was expensive for an overnight stay. I checked their room rates, and the lowest rate was at P4,400. The accommodations in Lago de Oro are not five star as they claim. Though they were bigger, the cabanas and trailers of Cam Sur had more character and charm. The rooms of Lago de Oro looked like Matabungkay's - old and worn.
The resort was old and not much renovation has been done to upgrade its facilities and design. The swimming pool looked like it was built in the 60s. The restaurant had no ambiance. The tents on the outdoor patio was thin to let the sun penetrate it.
The most surprising thing here is the price of the food. We had budget meal coupons since it was already in the package. When we checked the price of the budget meals, it was P299. I couldn't believe it. Pasta for P400 to P500. Entrees from P400 to P800. Lamb up to P1500. And the most shocking of all: plain rice for P100. And the food wasn't five star. They had 5 sauces which they used in their dishes. Even the pizzas had the same sauces as the beef and chicken dishes. It was a joke.
There was a wood fire oven in the open kitchen where they cooked pizzas. Their pizzas were priced at P300 to P400 and it was around 10 inches in diameter. Although still expensive, they were the only saving grace to this exorbitant menu. Try the Bolognese and Texan Pizza. They're really good.
Now, for the ultimate disappointment - the wakeboarding facility. I thought that the cables operated all day. I was surprised to learn that they would be open till 4:30 PM only. We started at 2PM. There were so many people in line I only got to splash 4 times total. JP and Liza had only two chances to knee board. Plus, there were no helmets here. Their life jackets were dirty and torn apart. Their boards were trash. There was no comfortable waiting area or lounge near the jump off. The bathroom was muddy and a mess. There was no restaurant as well, so no drinks, no snacks. This was truly a waste of time.
Now, if you want to try wakeboarding, I still think going to Cam Sur is even cheaper. It may be easier driving to Lago, and you only spend around P600 for gas, whereas going to Cam Sur will take you 8 hours and around P2000 for gas. But check this out. The rooms in Lago cost P4000 at least while you can get a comfortable trailer in Cam Sur for P1000. The rooms in Lago can accommodate 8 people. Get 4 trailer rooms and you have 4 bathrooms for 8 people for the same price. The price of food in Cam Sur is more than half the cost and value of Lago, plus they taste so much better. Finally, the facilities. In Cam Sur, the lake is filled with fresh water, unlike in Lago that had salt water. Sand make up the banks of Cam Sur while mud faces you in Lago. Cam Sur has the Bora feel, with cabanas and tents to keep you comfortable while you wakeboard. Lago doesn't have that. It costs P350 for an hour to wakeboard in Lago. It costs P160 in Cam Sur.
With that said, I think Cam Sur is still the better option and you get to enjoy and relax more. You can drive on Friday midnight to Cam Sur to arrive early morning in Naga and leave Cam Sur after lunch of Sunday. Lago may be near, but it nearness has degraded the place immensely. Lago de Oro had a lot of customers though, making me wonder why it is patronized given the prices. I would never go back to Lago de Oro to sleep there. As I am desperate to try wakeboarding, I would probably just make a day trip on a weekday so as to avoid the crowd. But I don't expect to enjoy learning there. At least I was treated to a beautiful sunset in the resort.
To end, let me post the link of Cam Sur Watersports Complex (CWC).