The hot weather and the horrible traffic situation, plus the political posts that we’d been seeing on social media a week before the election significantly affected everyone’s stress level. People on Facebook became an instant political analyst, throwing hate to each other as they fought for their favored candidates.
With all these, I decided to have a break and find a place that could give me a relaxing stay away from all the pressure of the metro and the social world.
And I found just that without flying or going on a long drive. Just less than 2 hours away from Makati is the city of San Pablo, a first-class city and the largest by land area in the province of Laguna. It is also known as the “City of Seven Lakes” and is one of the oldest cities in the Philippines.
Just along the main road, few minutes away from SM San Pablo, we reached our destination; a bed & breakfast named, Casa San Pablo. It is well-known as a place where one can find tranquility and the ultimate relaxation. Given this, I didn’t expect that it is located in the busy part of the city, to be honest, I was thinking they’d be located somewhere in the mountains or at least somewhere away from the chaos.
The gates are tall and old, towered over by some huge trees. Dry leaves littered the ground and the pavilion. As I saw the view, I asked myself, was I in the right place?
We stepped out from the car and crossed a bridge toward the front desk. The moment I stood on the other side of that bridge, I felt like I’d been transported to a different world. Seriously, the view inside Casa San Pablo is totally jaw-dropping.
I’m not sure what magic they cast upon their 7-hectare property that it felt like I was on cloud 9. It offers a countryside atmosphere in the middle of the busy city yet the noise from the outside world doesn’t reach within its walls. How can they do that?
There was a small arch that welcomed us, adorned with yellow flowers. The area is wide, covered with greenery, with plants growing on the wall and the pots are lined perfectly outside the rustic and classic rooms.
To add more beauty, there are wooden chairs and tables positioned outside the room where I visualized people having their morning coffee while reading their favorite book. It looks like those beautiful places you see on movies with a bohemian ambiance.
We were warmly welcomed by their staff and they assisted us during our check-in. As we slowly and carefully opened the wooden door, I was hit with happiness and blues, and in my head, I thought, “I miss my grandparents.” The place reminded me of the time I used to visit my Lola’s house, those were the good old’ days.
The wooden ceiling and bed, the paintings, the white curtains, and the simplicity of the entire room would make you feel like you were traveling back in time. They didn’t just offer us a luxurious break, they gave us feelings of comfort and warmth. That sense of going back to your old home, which I think you cannot find when you stay in more lavish hotels.
After we placed our bags inside our room, we immediately went to their restaurant. We found our table and waited for our food. This is one of the most creative, colorful, and tastefully decorated restaurants I’ve ever visited. Generally, the place is made of wood, there are flowers on the table, bright paintings on the wall, and charming displays made of clay.
Their food is simple and delicious as explained by Ms. Ann, the owner of Casa San Pablo. They are not a gourmet restaurant, nor do they have a chef. What they have are kusineros and she’s proud of them. I could understand why because I loved every food that Casa served to us; lutong-bahay (home-cooked) meals that would remind you of good memories, like in my case, remembering the food that I grew up to in our province. We had pandan juice, bagnet, roasted chicken, monggo, and bilo-bilo.
Time seems to move slowly inside Casa San Pablo. After our lunch, we decided to relax a bit, lie down on the hammocks, where we watched the movement of the sky in slow motion. We took pictures of the trees and the large, green house of the owner. There, I indulged in a dream, that one day I would retire in a place like this, where I could watch my grandchildren run around and play.
The entire mood was light and friendly; I could hear laughter everywhere. Ms. Ann is hands-on in running her the place. She moved from table to table to engage with the guests, sharing stories, and treating them like old time friends. It was the day before mother’s day and to honor them, guest mothers were given a wreath. It kind of felt like attending someone’s garden wedding.
The most exciting part of this stay was to have a chance to talk with Ms. Ann. In her sweet tone, she explained how Casa San Pablo started. The place is founded with hope and love, born from her and her husband’s love for traveling. In their younger years, whenever they traveled, they loved staying on bed & breakfast. Back then, they dreamed of having their own B&B someday.
What made me admire her more is the way she talked about how she fell in love with San Pablo, Laguna. It’s the hometown of her husband but she considers herself a part of it. She loves everything about San Pablo, from the place itself to the story of the people. She said that that’s what she would love their guest to feel when they go to Casa San Pablo; an authentic hometown experience.
Ms. Ann is a clay artisan and she creates the Casa San Pablo Storyteller dolls from terracotta clay. It was inspired by Cochiti Pueblo clay storytellers, Oaxacan and Peruvian clay figures with a touch of Filipino flavor.
If you think the place looks romantic at day, wait ‘til you see it at night. Every corner looked lovely. We had an outdoor romantic dinner set-up with bulbrite string lights with a man playing violin in the background. I swear that at that very moment, I wished that I’m having a date with someone I love. Nonetheless, I enjoyed this night together with my friends.
During our last day, it was so hard for me to leave the place. The idea of going back to Manila made me wish that I could stay there a little bit longer. My only consolation is that it’s not too far from Manila so, in case I need to go on a break, it wouldn’t be too hard for me to go back.
I highly recommend Casa San Pablo for people who are looking for an outdoor garden wedding, company team building, families who love relaxing outdoor activities, or couples looking for an intimate place to stay.
To know more about Casa San Pablo:
For more inquiries you may contact them at
Mobile (call us or text)
- +63 920 967 5277
- +63 917 812 6687
Phone (call our Manila landline)
- +63 2 211 2132
Fax (send over your page)
- +63 2 724 7023
Email–send your inquiry to our email address:
Note: This is a sponsored bed and breakfast stay with Casa San Pablo. All views, posts and opinions shared here are my own.