Wednesday, February 1, 2012

News Update At Home with the Clouds

MANILA, Philippines - Some people call it a "cloud spoon," Perhaps that is because it looks like the cotton-candy-like clouds are cradled on the bowl of a humungous spoon. But in truth, clouds are formed over land when moist air from the sea is drawn in by the dry air above the land. This rises to become hot, moist air, which in turn, condenses to form clouds. Such "cloud spoons" are found all over the world, lending their surreal beauty to make great vistas even more magnificent. One such "cloud spoon" may be found right behind Gardenville Hotel in Baguio. The recently launched condotel that sits on a hill within the Green Valley community is blessed with an unobstructed vantage point of this natural wonder. Albert Lim, the property's CEO, explains: "(The moisture) comes from the west Philippine sea. It evaporates in the morning when the sun is really hot and then it comes in at about one or two o'clock in the afternoon. So every afternoon, kami lang ang nagkakaroon ng fog because of the clouds coming in. But if you go to the other side sa Kennon, or Baguio City, wala niyan, dito lang yan talaga sa may Marcos highway. You can see it and experience it, kasi from our angle, you can see the west Philippine sea; when you go up to the radar, the next mountain up, the radar is about 6,500 feet about sea level; we are at 6,000 feet. Yung Baguio is 5,500 feet kaya mas malamig dito sa lugar namin sa Green Valley." That's the ethereal greeting guests get at Gardenville Hotel. Most of its 54 units, whether studio, one-bedroom, two-bedroom or the three to four bedroom penthouse, face the valley where the clouds rest. But apart from being such a heavenly destination, the condotel holds its own charm. Its minimalist decor does not draw away from the fantastic natural exteriors. So guests can just sit on the terrace to enjoy the cool Baguio air while chatting, hanging around, drinking piping hot Benguet brew, sampling international flavors or tucking in a comforting merienda. A gym and spa are on hand for health and wellness routines. And if need be, to interrupt one's rest and relaxation, Wi-Fi is available to connect with the maddening internet world out there. But if a visit to the center of town is necessary, Gardenville Hotel is a mere 15 minutes away from the crowds of Session Road and the Baguio public market. Many of Gardenville's unit owners come to Baguio to enjoy the pleasantly cool climate, detoxify with fresh fruits and vegetables, walk around the city and savor the peace and quiet that the mountain city offers. On the other hand, a Gardenville unit can also be turned into an investment. Those who don't really want to live in it can put their units into a pool and Gardenville can manage these for them by renting them out. If and when they do want to take the time out to visit Baguio, a unit can be made available for their use. In effect, Gardenville owners can own their titled condo units, use them occasionally, and earn from them too. Lim continues: "We have already sold more than 60 percentof the units and we're happy with the turnout and reception to the concept that we're doing." Lim is also looking forward to the extension of the SCTEX up to Pangasinan and La Union, which is scheduled for completion by end of 2012. This is projected to cut driving time from Manila to Baguio from its current five to six hours down to just three hours. Trips to Baguio will then be faster and easier; improved accessibility to the country's summer capital makes for good property investments. Lim views this development as a boon both for tourism and investments. He reiterates: "This is the perfect time to buy hanggang mura pa at hanggang affordable pa, kasi baka by that time (the SCTEX extension is finished), tumaas na. And we are not only inviting locals who live in Baguio, not only Filipinos in Manila, but also foreigners who can own condominiums, so they can have a retirement home that they can enjoy. So this is the best time to have not only a second home that you can call your own but also an investment that you can hand over to the next generation." For inquiries about Gardenville Hotel, please contact ESLA Land at their Baguio sales office tel: (6374) 444-4754 and email:,; or their Manila sales and marketing office tel: (632) 671-5749; or log on to their website: