The rain was pouring down in sheets when we arrived on Friday and someone met us at the parking area with an umbrella so wide it could have sheltered Maria, the Captain and the seven Von Trapp children. 🙂
We were led to the main house through a canopied walk.
The decor in Balay Indang (balay means house) is basically Filipino with some Balinese/Asian touches. The furnishings and polished wood floors give everything a probinsiya feel. Homey, welcoming and cozy would be a good way to describe the place.
We were promptly served merienda — buko tarts (a Tagaytay/Cavite specialty), crackers, iced tea and coffee. Because it was just the start of the weekend, we were the only guests staying for the night and had our pick of the rooms. We could have stayed in the main house but we opted for a ‘garden room’.
This is a perfect place for reading (probably even Great Expectations, if you are so inclined) and I managed to read through one book before we were called to dinner.
The walls of the main dining room are covered with a fascinating collection of mirrors and masks. You can spend minutes just checking out everything, including your reflection (again if you are so inclined).
Salad, shrimps cooked in coconut milk (the aroma alone made me drool), grilled chicken with chutney, steamed fish, green papaya also cooked in coconut milk. Pastillas for dessert…
This was our little placecard holder, meant to be charming and quaint, I’m sure. Unfortunately, it reminded morbid me of lapidas and tombs, nyeh.
After dinner we lounged around at the main house’s sala. We practically had the place to ourselves.
(Side Note #2: We used to own a copy of the Saturday Night Fever soundtrack album but in 1987, typhoon Sisang turned it into a frisbee.)
Anyway, we brought our coffee and some rambutan out to the terrace.
Then while we still had the place to ourselves, we took another stroll around the garden and to the pool area.It was too cold for a swim so we refreshed our skills at sungka at the poolside pavilion.
After taking more pictures and preparing for the trip back to Manila, we went to the main house for lunch and found the great room packed. People from an NGO plus a bunch of theater-types were there. (Nakita namin si Ronnie Lazaro, the Boatman).
This time, the main dining room was all dressed up.
Lunch included a salad, tuna wasabi, grilled porkchops, seafood omelet and these shrimp kebabs.I need to write an ode to those shrimp kebabs.
All too soon, it was time to leave. The staff sent us off with some seafood pesto and chilled soda to go. (We forgot to have our mid-morning snack and the Balay Indang package includes three meals and two snacks.) Of course, on our way back to the car, it started raining again. But after 24 hours at the Balay, we were already too relaxed to mind.
Balay Indang is in the municipality of Indang, Province of Cavite. It’s a couple of hours drive from Metro Manila and just a few minutes away from Tagaytay City.