(A friend’s wedding reception in Bohol Beach Club in time for the sunset.)
BOHOL BEACH CLUB
Centuries ago, the island was branded as a lonesome place. No wonder that the Spaniards described it as “mapanglao” (lonely). While it retained its name, Panglao Island is now oozing with energy and celebrations that there is no way it is going to be gloomy again. With the mushrooming hotels and resorts, the commercialization is shaping abruptly. I hope it would be able to sustain its natural beauty.
Being first time visitors, we were advised to stay in Panglao Island instead of being in the sentro, Tagbilaran City. Since the latter is 30-minute drive to the beach and there is no regular commute (yes, transportation arrangement is the deal), we really intended to stay footsteps away from the beach. While the resorts share the same shoreline, Bohol Beach Club has the longest stretch which we got to appreciate when we attended the wedding reception of a friend.
LOST HORIZON HOTEL in Alona Beach
Taking the combined recommendations from non-blogger and blogger pals, we booked the family “room” (i.e. three rooms via two connecting doors — much preferred in our case) overlooking the pool in Lost Horizon Hotel. The establishment’s name stuck in my head even before the reason to visit Bohol materialized. I gave a high regard to almost anything Lost Horizon since I watched that very interesting black and white movie which has the same title (initially shown in 1937) in-flight. I think that it’s a genius production especially during that time when the idea of hidden paradise and “other world” was infant.
As I recall our activities by looking at our photographs, the more it became glaring that one place we call home at the end of day is very important. No wonder that no matter how tiring some tours seemed, the moment we set foot on the beach again, the day never failed to conclude with serenity and happiness.
As one of the many hotels in Alona Beach, I can only speak of good things about Lost Horizon especially that we were genuinely treated extra special (e.g. invited to their company Christmas party, adequately arranged the tours for us, and more) by the management. I don’t know if it was just the timing because we stayed with them pre-Christmas, but the staff were so good to us from day 1 of inquiry via emails to the day we had to go back to the airport.
It is within the cluster of Alona Beach which is currently tagged as mini-Boracay. Surprisingly, I liked Bohol better than Boracay just because it’s more serene to me. But if you’re in for more lively night life, you’ll prefer Boracay.
Alona Beach is really full of character just like how it was named. Do you know Alona Alegre? I heard about her from my elders as one of the actresses who teamed up with the late Fernando Poe, Jr. We chatted with the locals and they claimed (I liked the part that they were consistent about the story and there was so much conviction in the delivery) that she once shoot a film by this beach, in her original birthday dress (i.e. nude). Therefore, the beach was named after her.
I can only imagine Panglao Island getting prettier as each day progresses. That’s me declaring to the Universe that I seriously want to revisit.