No matter what the season, Baguio City is always a great getaway place for people who yearn to relax and forget worldly woes even just for a couple of days. This week, I’d like to share with you another hotel which is very close to my heart – The Forest Lodge in Camp John Hay.
A few weeks ago, I knew in my heart I needed a little break to clear my head and get loads of fresh air and inspiration. That time, I was going through some major adjustments in my life so I felt I needed to ground myself and start things right. Whenever I think of Baguio, there’s really no other place that I can think of but Camp John Hay. Over the years, we I have considered The Manor as our home, then when The Forest Lodge officially opened in 2012, we felt very fortunate knowing that our Baguio family grew all the more.
That time, I didn’t mind traveling alone as I knew I’d be safe at the hotel. Also, it’s now the lean season so rates are more affordable (now at only P2600/night) plus, there aren’t as much travelers making the city less crowded which meant more peace and quiet! =)
Great to be back at The Forest Lodge!
When I stepped-in the lobby, I knew I was at the right place and time. It was great to see familiar faces at the Front Office again and I couldn’t wait to relax and discover what’s new in Baguio!
What I love most about The Forest Lodge in Camp John Hay is that, the rooms look exactly like what you enjoy at The Manor! Here at The Forest Lodge, you get to enjoy luxury Baguio living for less.
All the basics you need are provided for you like these ultra cozy beds, very spacious rooms, cable tv, easy phone access and also super fast internet connection!!
Like in The Manor, each room has a coffee and tea making facility and mini-ref. The mini-ref isn’t filled with food or drinks though. The mini bar is one of the few things they didn’t include to make the rates more affordable.
Each room also has its own separate dresser, closet complete with a hair dryer, safety deposit box, flat iron etc. ( san ka pa?!!!)
I can really say only good things even with their bathroom. Complete with hot and cold shower, bidet spray, clean linens and toiletries.
Dinner time came so I went down at the ground floor at The Twist to eat….
Deep Fried Prawns– I find this appetizer as quite filling so I ended up eating it with my main dish. Really tasty!
Crispy Pork Belly: the pork belly was done perfectly with its super crunchy skin while keeping the meat tender and juicy. Loved the sweet/savory Teriyaki sauce as well!
After that filling meal, I decided to stay a while longer to check my emails while having coffee and dessert
the fireplace by night time
best place to unwind at night…
I couldn’t help but notice the piano performer playing classic well-loved tunes so I moved near the piano bar to unwind a bit.
The next day, I woke up to one of my most peaceful mornings ever…
This is definitely one of the reasons why staying at Camp John Hay is really best, you won’t enjoy this kind of peace if you stay in the city.
Here at the Twist is where guests can have their breakfast. I’d say it’s the affordable version of our favorite Le Chef. The food quality is of course the same but their menu is more limited. If you want to dine at Le Chef, you just have to walk for less than 5 mins as there’s a pathway connecting both hotels.
Since I wanted to enjoy a more cozy breakfast, I requested the staff if I could eat near the window by their fireplace. =)
that morning, I ordered my favorite Baguio Longanisa and mango juice!!!
Whenever at The Forest Lodge, I highly recommend you hangout in their music room if you want to listen to lps or read books. The ambiance is just perfect!
I felt so comfortable that I decided to write my articles there the whole day….
I was totally surprised when I saw in one of their elevators that they now offer Hot Yoga (Bikram) classes twice daily (7am and 6pm) for only P350/class! When I saw the poster, I immediately called the Front Office and asked for a reservation!
Here’s the pathway leading to The Manor =)
The Bikram class is located at The Manor’s Wellness Center so I had to walk a bit.
The Wellness Center
When I entered the studio… OMG! I can’t believe it’s true!
The Bikram classes are led by a wonderful woman named Tessie Anderson. If I remember right, they only started having classes here last February but now, their students are really a lot! The classes are superb! I recommend you attend classes everyday so you can be more fit when you come back to Manila. I can’t believe that Baguio is now a Yoga destination! This is definitely another great reason to come back!
During my stay, I was fortunate to witness the opening of their 2 new outlets…. For guests looking for an intimate place to have drinks, be sure to visit their Exit bar.
And for your pasalubongs of course, The Forest Lodge also opened their very own deli so you can buy your favorite breads, pastries, wines etc for your loved ones back home.
Aside from the luxury amenities which I was able to enjoy during my week long stay, it was really the people in the hotel which made my stay worthwhile. Seeing them everyday made me even more relaxed. Unlike most hoteliers in Manila, the ones here at The Forest Lodge looked way more relaxed and glowing! They even told me they also attend the Bikram classes! No wonder they emit such good vibes!
Staff at The Twist
Meet Ma’am Karen and Kristine!
During my week-long stay at The Forest Lodge, I was fortunate enough to meet new friends and discover new things about Baguio. Aside from discovering Bikram Yoga, it was during this trip where I discovered….
Amare la Cucina, the BEST PIZZA in Baguio!
I also got to finally eat at KETCHUP Food Community
got to taste the exotic Sizzling Nguso near SM
got the chance to visit the former old tree turned artsy food center, Artsy Ili-Likha artists center along Assumption Rd
tasted the mind blowing beers at CRAFT Baguio Brewery!
and also that relaxing and super effective Zen Detox Spa experience!
Aside from that, it was also great to taste Baguio’s famous Strawberry Shortcake by Vizco‘s as well as the pastries at Cafe by the Ruins!
Baguio’s famous Strawberry Shortcake by Vizco’s
lovely breakfast at Cafe by the Ruins
Checking out was once again difficult as it was one of my most relaxing and rewarding stays in the City of Pines. Once again, I went in the bus teary-eyed with a heavy heart as leaving felt so sad. I will definitely miss all the wonderful people I met and the new experiences I had. I would like to take this opportunity to thank Ma’am Crystal, Ma’am Faith, Sir Mides, Sir Ramon and the whole staff for always considering me as family. To Ms. Tessie and Mike Anderson for making me love yoga again. To Ed and Nica of Amare la Cucina for being great hosts as well as to Paris, Ross and Sir Chris from CRAFT Brewery. To Ma’am Karen for introducing me to Ms Kristine of Zen Detox Spa and Jacky of Vizco’s. Thanks also to the superb people over at Le Chef led by Chef Billy King and Ma’am Lady. Thank you as well to my friend Aldreen for the Ube Jam he gave me and Frank! Awwwww!!!! I feel really blessed to have you all!
An epic trip like this makes life worthwhile! Baguio is still THE BEST! =)
So next time you visit Baguio, always remember The Forest Lodge if you wish to experience true luxury for less!
And because I would also like to share this epic experience with you, I’m giving away a FREE OVERNIGHT STAY AT THE FOREST LODGE!! Simple follow these simple steps:
Loakan Road, 2600 Baguio City, Philippines
(074)422-2075 to 76 / (074) 422-2080 to 81
like them on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheForestLodgeCampJohnHay/