Roots

Throwback photo from PVSPhoto grabbed from Pinky Valenciano-Sison

My cousins on the Abad side, May, Jonas and Samantha are currently in town. We’re catching up with each other, toured the southside of Ilocos, read dates, talked about Paoay Church, munched on traditional Ilocano bibingka and calamay and centuries-old Vigan pipian, checked out Vigan’s new Hotel Luna, shopped for indigenous stuff, marveled at the splendor of the Vigan Cathedral, traversed to Bungro, dipped at Playa Tropical’s pool and ate Batac empanada. Their nephew on their mom’s side (the Enrique side), Anthony Daniel, a 23-year old West Point graduate, hung out with us.

The photo above, with Pinky and May, is so special (thank you, Pinky!). I’m the one with flowers on her hair and May was wearing aviators I think.

UntitledCurrimaoBeach GardenPicture 033CousinsJonasJonas Lazo Abad.Ilocano HouseTupigBibingkaVigan CalesasArarosipPipianSoothing Vigan pipian at Gnadpa’s Inn. We had grilled chicken marinated in karimbuaya leaves (super!), ararosip, pancit bihon,  and grilled mixed Ilocano veggies.Hotel Luna, ViganJack and ReyBumped into Chef Jackie de la Cruz and Rey Retua was with us:)Tilted Hotel LunaSt. Paul CathedralReligiousitySam, May and TonySam and MayTonyTonyPaoay ChurchFamilyPaoay Church

Photographed by May Thomas, Rey Retuta and Blauearth
© Blauearth™ All Rights Reserved 2009-2015

Hotel Luna: A luxury heritage museum hotel in Vigan

Vigan

If you think you’ve never heard of a Hotel Luna in Vigan before, it is because it officially opened just a few weeks ago. From the outside, you would mistake the newly painted old-and-simple-but-massive-structure for a villa or just another heritage hotel which is regulatory in the city that cares so much about heritage preservation.

A breath of fresh air greets you at the entrance. By Vigan standards, it feels queer in a beautiful way, I mean heritage with a twist — little modernities here and there and yet within the bounds of the city’s mantra.

Built in 1882, the property was a former residence, a gift of Ilocos Sur’s affluent Don Jose Florentino to his daughter.

Vigan CalesaVigan heritage CityFrom the roof deck, a fresh perspective of Vigan’s mansions and the St. Paul Cathedral.

Building Reflection

Hotel Luna, named after the celebrated Ilocano painter Juan Luna, is the only luxury hotel in Vigan and the only museum hotel in Northern Luzon. A marriage of both worlds, it is not just a museum of antiquities, but a gallery of contemporary art as well. Artworks by national artists and remarkable painters speak so much about the art leanings of the owners, the same family that own Rembrandt Hotel in Manila and Le Monet in Baguio. You’d find an Amorsolo, Juan Lunas, a painting by Cory Quirino and so much more. Something we were forbidden to see is a roomful of precious art pieces — very private, according to our very engaging tour guide Melvin Martinez.

Rooms are posh. Soft upholstered headboards punctuate loft suites and the deluxe, superior and standard rooms, while a four poster and a porcelain bathtub make the low-key executive suite. A paradigm shift is de riguer in the bar and the outside spaces.

The warmth of the place is inviting. I live next door so to speak, but I’d love to experience an overnight stay in Vigan and it would be my first if ever.

Hotel LunaChula Bar, Hotel LunaThe hotel manager, Robert Ferrer, at the Chula Bar. Btw, he was so accommodating.

Chula BarHotel LunaHotel LunaHotel LunaHotel LunaHotel LunaHotel LunaHotel LunaThe  eye-catching  3D historical mural was done by world-famous artist Rene Robles. Along with the country’s art gliterati, he was at the hotel’s inauguration early this month.

Hotel LunaLuna Hotel, ViganHotel LunaHotel LunaMelvinHotel LunaLuna Hotel museumLa Mandolinera by Juan LunaLa Mandolinera (The Violin Player) by Juan Luna.

*With special thanks to Mr. Robert Ferrer, Melvin Martinez and the rest of the wonderful staff.

Hotel Luna V. de los Reyes cor. Gem Luna Sts, Vigan City, Ilocos Sur, Philippines 2700 Tel No.: 632 373 3333 loc 201 email: sales.artstream@gmail.com http://www.hotelluna.ph

Photographed by Blauearth © Blauearth™ All Rights Reserved 2009-2014