Sunday, July 19, 2015

Family fun at The Peacock Garden in Bohol

Exactly one month ago, my family and I were flying home from a truly magical vacation at The Peacock Garden in Bohol. We usually look forward to going home. Since we're a family that has three kids all under the age of 5, every vacation is stressful. Every single one. Except for our Bohol trip. It was our best holiday ever. Ever! And we owe it all to the beautiful Peacock Garden luxury resort.

Just look at this view that greeted us when we arrived!

That's the view from our room, by the way. All we needed to do was look out our glass doors and we were instantly calmed by that azure horizon. I seriously wanted to wake up every morning to this!

My kids agree. Until now, they keep asking to go back to The Peacock Garden. That's how much we enjoyed our stay! My kids never ask to go back to anywhere (except places like Kidzoona and Active Fun) but with Peacock Garden, they ask to go back there nearly every day!

The Peacock Garden is a boutique hotel tucked away in the hills of Baclayon. It's not in the party section of Bohol. If you like peace and quiet, if you like luxury, if you like impeccable service, if you like the most amazing food in the world, then you will definitely love The Peacock Garden.

That's what my family enjoyed most—the privacy. Everything was so serene. Everything was so luxurious. I imagine this is how it feels like to live in a castle. Vast estate, manicured grounds, the most delicious food we've had in our life (and we've eaten in many fancy places), rooms outfitted in heavy, solid furniture, and dignified, attentive and discrete service. This hotel made us feel so grand.

And yet it also made us feel like we were just at home.

Here's a view of the rooms. The hotel has just 40 rooms. When we stayed there, there were other guests but everyone kept to themselves, enjoying their privacy.

My kids, city boys that they are, enjoyed the lush garden. We picked flowers, followed a trail of ants, watched a giant centipede crawl on the green grass, looked for birds singing in the bushes, were entertained by birds taking a bath in the pool, named the resident peacock Fitzgerald (he looked really fancy!), crunched leaves and stomped on duhat, watched the rain clouds roll in, and watched that rain pour down on everything. It was incredible!

That's why my kids miss it so much!

Anyway, as soon as we arrived from the airport (a mere 15 minutes away), we were greeted by a warm staff and a cold drink of pineapple and watermelon. Our enormous room was outfitted with a massive bed—it was as tall as a dining table with the best mattress ever. Okay, while I loved how high it was (made me feel like the princess in The Princess and the Pea!), as a mom, I was scared for my kids. If they fall, that's a pretty high fall. Some of my friends who've stayed at Peacock Garden also said that they literally had to climb up and down the bed. It's that high!

But I still love it. I think it's even better than Sofitel's beds, which Sofitel is very proud of. The beds at Peacock Garden are impressive. That amazing mattress is couched in a huge and heavy, solid, wood-carved bed frame.

I know I'm waxing poetic but I love how the bed and the furniture and everything in the hotel actually is so far removed from the boring modern streamlined beiges of hotels nowadays. Everything was so old world and European. Just opulent!

See how happy my kids are???

See how comfy they are?
My Iñigo and Vito are so very tired here. After our flight and initial tour of the hotel grounds, we went to the Bohol Bee Farm, which was quite a fascinating place. I'll make kwento in another post since I want this post to be all about The Peacock Garden, but just so you know, the hotel staff can arrange these tours for you, and I suggest that you do!

Anyway, here's Piero and me the next morning! Haha, I look so scary.
There was a storm approaching when we flew in but we had tours planned that day (Chocolate Hills! Tarsiers!) so we woke up early for breakfast!

A stay at The Peacock Garden comes with free breakfast. While there is a buffet, you can order from the menu, since the buffet consisted mainly of breads, cold cuts, cereal and yogurt. If you wanted something hot from the kitchen, you order it.
And you really have to order from the restaurant's fine menu. The Old Heidelberg is absolutely the best restaurant we've ever set foot on and had the greatest luck to eat in. Grabe ang sarap ng pagkain dito! Of course, I can't say every dish was a resounding success but all the dishes we ordered was a resounding success!

The kids loved Old Heidelberg so much. We did, too. It was very clean. The kids were playing on the floors and under the tables (we were the only ones there so we let the boys play). The wait staff was also very attentive and playful with the kids. They anticipated needs like a pillow for the kids to sit on because the table was high.

Speaking of that table, it was another heavy hardwood piece. The chairs were embossed leather. The chandelier was large goblets of glass and gold. And there were peacocks everywhere—on sculptures, plates, furniture. I'll do a post on that! It was fun hunting for peacocks!

Okay, I have a gazillion more photos and stories about our Bohol adventure. For now, let me leave you with scenes from our stay that my husband Vince captured.  
Lady in the rain.
Koi swimming just beneath the rain-dappled surface. 
Iñigo drawing on the condensation.
A bird and a goddess survey their kingdom.
Birds right outside our window.
I love this photo!
More on our Bohol adventure tomorrow!

To know more about The Peacock Garden and to book a stay at this exquisite place, click here.

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