Image courtesy Girlie Cervantes
In September 2011, the first “Glamping Philippines” destination will be open for glamorous campers on Pamilacan Island, off the southern coast of Panglao Island. GetWet was fortunate to visit the Dive Thru Glamping facility in July, before the glamorous campers arrive in the Fall, and can now provide you with this report on some of what will be available.
Located on the southern shores of Pamilacan Island, the Dive Thru Glamping facility is operated by the Dive Thru Resorts group and is set to become a must-visit destination, especially for Manila’s best educated, who would love to camp the traditional way but can’t quite get to grips with the “sans-butler” concept.
One’s mode of transport to a glamping site can frequently be an indicator of how glam the camping is going to be. At Pamilacan Island you are offered two options but you will choose only one: the Sarangani Princess – the fastest power boat around Panglao Island – makes the trip in minutes only, from the Dive Thur Resort on Panglao Island.
One’s glamping venue accommodation also influences the glam factor rating. At Pamilacan you can choose the native cottage, complete with placid-porch-pooch, or the finest imported glamping products from the United States. I know which I will choose.
The level of service is a significant factor in determining the overall glamping star-rating. At Pamilacan the service is very personal, with a butler on call 24/7 to deal with any and all situations, especially with those annoying indigenous critters that may from time to time attempt unscheduled interaction with you. While we were at the glamping site on Pamalican Island the placement of signs, which unequivocally demand that annoying indigenous critters keep out (unless they are brought in by the glam-campers themselves), was being mulled.
Food of course is the major glamping pass-time and having a seafood market just a few score meters from the glamping site ensures that the help will not be absent for too long. What the seafood market cannot provide, Dive Thru Resort will.
In the early days of Pamilacan glamping the spa services will be modest but for fitness and exercise routines there are many and varied programs. For example: for toning the biceps we recommend frequently raising freshly harvested coconuts above the hips and to the lips. Of course one could opt to decant to crystal but we’re supposed to be camping . . . right?
One item of particular note is the thread count of the manicured lawns upon which one’s temporary abode may be situated. This project has obviously been maturing in the cask for a number of years prior to its opening this Fall; it is almost inconceivable that these extensive lawns could have been imported . . . or could they?
If GetWet is invited back to Pamilacan glamping in the future then we will update you on the spa facilities but in the meantime I would like to take this opportunity acknowledge everyone who made this post possible. Thank you to: inspired Dive Thru Resorts creators Dindo & Carol Ventura; tireless Joel Uichico, who brought the Ayalas et al to Pamilacan to develop alternative livelihood projects and who first brought Pamilacan Island to my attention; inventive executive chef Leah, who selected the barracuda consumed at luncheon and who has provided the Dive Thru Resort kitchen with a menu the Tower Club would be proud of; brother Alex, the “trainer of butlers”, who so deftly demonstrated coconut decanting; and, thanks especially to the placid-porch-pooch “Mighty”, who illustrated exactly how to enjoy glamping, Pamilacan style – he woke-up, raised a paw to scratch something just once in the space of two hours.
Dive Thru Resorts will be opening in Sarangani and Palawan in the not too distant future too, so standby for more glamping-Philippines destinations soon.
Dive Thru Resorts website