After several failed attempts, I finally found a slot to stay in one of the last of Metro Cebu's resorts. And what a fitting finale it is indeed. One of the Philippines' pioneer boutique properties, Abaca Resort and Spa is also one the country's best luxury escapes.
Abaca is known for its famed restaurant of the same name. It actually started out with the restaurant owned by Jason Hyatt. The restaurant has been named one of the country's best, so having meal here is an experience all together.
In fact, I have eaten several times here already, but I have never gotten the chance to stay in their resort.
The Abaca Resort and Spa is already more than 5 years old, and has gotten a lot of good reviews from its visitors. The property is located between Movenpick and Be Resorts in Punta Engano in Mactan. I was always wondering how the experience would be different from Shangri-La or the Imperial Park, two of my favorite resorts in Mactan as well.
To start off, we were met in the parking area by our butler. They knew I was coming, and from the moment I arrived, I knew it was going to be a worthwhile stay.
We were led to our room, which was located in front of the pool. With only 9 rooms, the resort does uphold the boutique concept. It was exclusive and very private.
The room reminded me of a hotel I stayed in South Africa. It wasn't as large as I expected it to be, but at least it felt so cozy.
A wooden door led to a very spacious bathroom. There was also a day bed near the sliding door leading to our veranda, that wasn't as private since it opened up to the infinity pool. There was also an outdoor shower, though I didn't check if it was functional.
We arrived late at night, so the next morning, I was excited to just enjoy these wonderful cabanas that circled the pool. I thought that this was probably it. There is nothing more you can do. But whoever goes to Abaca falls into the spell of laziness.
While walking around, our butler was already preparing a cabana for us, which was almost a room in itself. It had a queen sized day bed, and a lounge. You can even draw the curtains for more privacy. There wasn't any beach, but if you really crave for activity, you can snorkel or perhaps use their kayak to just paddle to a certain distance to the sea.
I lay down the day bed and opened my laptop and started working. I couldn't help myself but look to a distance, or stare at the pool, and just doze off in my imagination. I was in a haven of relaxation. No noisy crowds, no one to bother you except your butler who discreetly served us drinks. We literally spent the entire afternoon in our cabana, and was surprised how time flew even when you weren't doing anything.
There is also a spa on site, but I wasn't able to avail any service. I was just too lazy to move from my cabana. That was what escaping meant to those weary souls who yearn for nothing for once, but a well-deserved relaxing afternoon.
I am not surprised that they have visitors from other countries who just spend a weekend here. The reviews were spot on. Abaca was my type of resort, luxurious but not imposing, providing you with nothing but peace and quiet, and perhaps the best service any resort can offer in the country.
PS. Ask for their eggs benedict for breakfast. It's the best that I've tasted so far.
Abaca Resort and Spa
Over-all Experience: 4
IE Score: 3.95 (Good)