Bali is a tourist destination in Indonesia that’s frequently listed on many travelers’ bucket list. We also wanted to visit that place but the distance, budget and time are of hindrance. Thanks to the web, we found a Balinese-inspired garden at very close proximity. Located at Sitio Pandayan, Batangas, we found another haven within our reach. In a jiffy, we inquired for a Cintai Coritos Garden day tour.
Technically, there’s a day tour listed on their site that costs P1850 each. It includes lunch, afternoon snacks and access to all the amenities including four swimming pools. But since we are not prepared and fit for swimming on the time of our visit, we opted with just lunch and free tour instead.
I’ve heard about this wonderful place a long time ago but have almost forgotten it. It’s for the reason that I have always thought it will be quite expensive to visit. But we discovered recently that you can have an ocular indulgence in this sanctuary without checking a room. Just book for a day tour as mentioned above or reserve for a buffet lunch and roaming around will be free. I took the opportunity to review the place and see if I can recommend it in the future.
Cintai (pronounced as Chin-tai) means “love” in Indonesia. Besides making the world go round, it is also a building block of this garden. This place started out as a private rest house of a family where they spend their time every weekend. Corito is from the name of the mother and wife which served as the inspiration of the family that turned this garden to its wonderful state. It has two pavilions for events such as debuts, weddings, and other occasions, 18 uniquely-designed villas, four swimming pools, children’s playground and features some animals such as an eagle, peacocks, ducks, among others.
We were greeted by a well-themed entrance gate. I instructed my girlfriend to take a picture while I was driving upon entering. The guard greeted us courteously and asked us about our reservations. He checked it on his logbook and let us enter. Out of curiosity, I asked him if walk-ins are allowed. He affirmed it up that walk-ins are also much welcome.
Weekend Lunch Buffet
Their staff escorted us to Abadi restaurant after the registration/validation of reservation at the front desk. By the way, the rates are P550 per adult and P375 for kids. It was lunch time and we immediately proceeded to the buffet table. There were a couple of foods to choose from. Not that plenty but just right enough.
We had chicken curry, caldereta, lechon kawali, chopsuey, caesar salad, chicken bbq, pork bbq and iced tea and leche flan for desserts. We liked the food overall but I think additional food choices would be more satisfying. Anyway, with the free tour around the place, the value you’ll get is more than what you’ve paid for. You can find the menu at their website.
I wish we noticed the map upfront so we have a guide on our walkthrough. Here it is, located near the front desk, if you will be going soon.
We walked around right after we billed-out at the restaurant. We went first to the grotto of mama mary. I immediately recalled Game of Throne’s Iron chair when looking at Mama Mary’s statue. Cool, isn’t it?
We followed the road and took pictures along the way.
We found big statues ahead and carved walls – all Balinese-inspired. If you love taking photographs, then this place will truly make your camera busy. You’ll find lots of Instagrammable spots. Even their fences, and trash can are in accordance with the theme.
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The two big walls with tusks are called the Elephant Portal. It’s a nice entrance to where the Villas are located. The structures are so huge making it hard to compose the pictures without using wide-angle lens.
The garden has nice bermuda grass, plenty of trees; some are coniferous that hints a colder climate in this area.
Here are some of the glamorous villas. Even just by seeing them from the outside, we knew that they are worth recommending to our relatives, friends and colleagues. We are yet to experience staycation here but we’re hoping that we can set aside a budget for it and try it soon.
This one is called Napas Pavilion. It can hold 150 people inside. It’s open air and I think it can be a grand venue for wedding receptions and many other occasions.
Here’s one of the free-roaming animals you can encounter on the garden. We saw it near the pavilion grazing with the greeneries around. There are plenty of bantam chickens as well. At the parking, I saw some geese which guards their man-made habitat protectively. Maybe there were young geese inside.
Aside from the free-roaming animals, we also saw peacocks and an eagle at the cages.
There are plenty of stairs which is a nice spot for pictures specially for prenup photo-shoots.
As said earlier, there are four swimming pools around. Two are located near Abadi restaurant: one big and one small. There’s a dining area overlooking the pools in case you want to eat while watching your kids swim. When I passed by, I saw one of their staff on guard while two kids are swimming. Good job.
Here’s a nice Balinese statue near the two pools. It looks like it’s also on guard.
They are also offering spa for P1000 per hour / person. Another set of pools are located near it.
At last, we found our way to one of the most featured spots of Cintai Coritos Garden — the Portal Door. We were so excited shooting our pictures right away as we saw the famous doors. We forgot our tripod that time and just laid our camera on the grass so we can snap some couple pictures.
Overall, we had a great experience at the resort even for just a few hours. We are indeed looking forward for a staycation here and swim in their clean swimming pools. Summer is coming soon and it’s a resort worth considering.
How to go to Cintai Corito’s Garden
It’s just few hours away from the metro, and getting here by commute is relatively easy. Many are searching for affordable Batangas resorts with swimming pool around and this is one of the most recommendable.
- Take a bus to Lipa, Batangas. If you’re from Manila, there are terminals of ALPS and JAM at Cubao and lots of terminals around Buendia: DLTB, JAC, JAM, Ceres. (>P100) Take off preferably near Robinson’s Lipa.
- Ride a tricycle to Malabanan Jeepney Terminal / (or you can hire a trike straight to the garden for ~P150)
- Ride and drop off at Cintai Corito’s Garden.
For more info you can reach them via their contact number.
Cintai Corito’s Garden
Sitio Pandayan, Malabanan, Balete Batangas
Further reading: Where to eat in Batangas? Here’s a suggestion in Taal.