I’d been to Pico de Loro Beach and Country Club a few years ago with my family, and I distinctly remember that it was a fun experience for us. Personally, I was impressed with the facilities, the exclusive vibe and the tranquil beauty of this place. When my friends Mich and Yam decided to go away for the long weekend last February, I suggested that we go here. (See also our road trip to Tagaytay.)
Our long weekend stay at Pico de Loro resort
Pico de Loro Beach and Country Club is a members-only residence resort located at Hamilo Coast in Nasugbu, Batangas.
Similar to other country clubs, you need to know a member to get in or go the common route of booking rooms via Airbnb. We were actually surprised because we looked for a unit 2 weeks before the said long weekend and most places would’ve been fully booked, but there were still several rooms in Pico de Loro.
Armed with excitement and boxes of groceries that would feed an entire family for days, we drove from Manila to Batangas. (The route we took is actually the same as that to Bituin Cove, where I snorkeled with Hali last time.)
We registered at the Hamilo Coast main gate and drove — take note of this — another 7 kilometers to the resort proper. Apparently the whole Hamilo Coast spans 5900 hectares and Pico de Loro Beach and Country Club occupies 40 hectares of it, surrounded by rolling hills of arid brown and lush green.
Pico de Loro is composed of several residential buildings surrounding a man-made lake, and so you can get a room with either a mountain view or lake view. There’s a central building called Country Club where you can find restaurants, stores and facilities such as courts and swimming pool area. On the other end of Pico de Loro is a private beach, the Pico Beach, which is free for all guests. There’s a members-only Beach Club as well where there’s another swimming pool.
The unit we booked is a studio with a bunk bed (queen bed and single bed) and sofa bed, a fully equipped kitchen, CR with (thankfully) hot/cold shower and a veranda with a mountain view. I commented that the room looked smaller in person, but Mich said it’s okay and reasonable, which confirms that I’m just really maarte.
Anyway, what I like about our room is that it’s complete. There are pots and pans, plates and utensils. There are big, soft pillows and blankets for all of us. I also like the alfresco dining setup in the veranda because we can enjoy our food while being surrounded by the natural beauty of the mountains and serenaded by birds.
In our first day, we didn’t really do anything much. We rested from the drive, prepared merienda and dinner and then went outside for a stroll and check out the beach. We drank at night and slept late.
The next day, I went out early in the morning to take some photographs. Pico de Loro is very beautiful, but the sky here is frequently overcast. It happened on my last visit here and it’s also evident on blogs with “gloomy” photos. I found that there’s a sweet spot in the morning — you’ll get to see a light-blue sky and minimal clouds.
I also walked to the pool area since it’s just next to our building. Here there are kiddie pools and most notably an infinity pool facing the lake. There are lounge chairs everywhere, although on weekends and holidays it can get difficult to get a spot. That morning, there were only a few guests in the pool area.
I went back to our unit and we had brunch. We then explored the rest of Pico de Loro. Our first stop was the fish feeding area in front of our building. Here you can see koi, catfish and other fishes I can’t identify. A small bag of feed is only P20, and we bought 2. Fish feeding is one of those activities with minimal effort but is really fun.
We detoured to where the hanging bridge is. The hanging bridge leads to a small islet in the middle of the lake. As far as I know, there isn’t anything to do here but it’s a popular photo spot. Also, the walk was nice because we could see and appreciate the surrounding nature.
We got to the Pico Beach and enjoyed the water for a few hours. Pico Beach has ordinary-looking sand but the water is incredibly clear and, like everything else in this residence village, it’s well kept and managed. Overall, the beach is really nice.
I bought my snorkels but unfortunately there are no corals nearby. I learned later on that you’ll need a boat ride to get to another cove to snorkel. Still, I did see schools of fish near the shore of Pico Beach.
Like the previous day, we waited for the sunset. The best spot for taking sunset photos is on the left side of the Pico Beach because here the sun isn’t hidden by the mountain,
Have I mentioned that Pico de Loro is also amazing at night? A lot of the pathways here don’t have sufficient lighting in my opinion (and I have poor eyesight especially at night), but the reflections of the buildings in the lake are really nice.
We went back to our unit and spent the day as before — food tripping and chatting. I was so full from eating, but who can say no to home-cooked beef tacos, spaghetti, pininyahang manok and salted-egg shrimps? (Thanks Mich and Yam for cooking. I keep thinking that, if it were Hali and me, we’d probably have brought canned goods and packed tuna rice or Jollibee takeouts.)
We woke up early the next day and packed our things. On our way back to Manila, we passed by this wonderful ocean view along Nasugbu mountain highway and stopped for photos.
Thank you Pico de Loro Beach and Country Club for the good memories. Also… Good luck to my friend Yam in your new life in London! *laugh-sniff*
Summary: Here’s my review of Pico de Loro
To summarize, here are the things I like about Pico de Loro Beach and Country Club:
- It’s only about 2-3 hours away from Manila, and so it’s perfect for weekend vacations.
- The whole beach resort is relaxing and beautiful.
- It’s ideal for family and friends’ outing. It is also kid friendly.
- Units are fully furnished and the whole Pico de Loro Beach and Country Club offers lots of facilities & activities.
- Budget-wise, it’s reasonably priced.
Here are the things I think can be improved on:
- Registration. It took us 30-40 minutes to register. With a high-end residence resort like this, I’m sure there’s a way to speed up this process.
- Cash payment is not accepted in stores/retail establishments inside. Why???
Practical Details: Pico de Loro Beach and Country Club
Pico de Loro Cove is a 40-hectare “Residential Resort Village” at Hamilo Coast in Nasugbu, Batangas.
How to get here
From Buendia or other terminals in Manila, take a bus en route to Nasugbu, Batangas. Once in town proper, hire a tricycle to take you to the resort. After arrival in the registration area, you can request a shuttle to your unit (P200).
Via private car
The best way to get to Pico de Loro resort is via private car. You can take Cavitex or SLEX, depending on where you’re coming from. Travel time is 2-3 hours.
There’s plenty of (free) parking inside the resort.
How to book a room
Since Pico de Loro Beach and Country Club is members only, you’ll need to book via Airbnb, where members rent out their units. Sign up in Airbnb using this referral link to get P1600 credits.
A studio unit usually costs anything from P2500 to 4000, good for 3-4 people.
An alternative is to book in the Pico Sands Hotel. It is more expensive, but it comes with free breakfast and hotel guests have access to the beach club. It’s a good option if you’re after convenience and don’t mind spending more.
Amenities and features
Here are the amenities inside the resort and activities you can do.
Things you have to know
- Upon registration, each guest is required to pay a guest fee of P800 or P1200 (off-peak or high-peak season) and ecological fee of P20.
- There is no ATM machine inside. Also, the resort uses a cashless paying system. You need to buy and load a cash card or use debit/credit card.
- There’s a lot of dining options inside the resort, but if you want to save money, bring your own food. Units normally have basic kitchen amenities and cooking is allowed.
Pico de Loro Beach and Country Club: Official website
Have you been to Pico de Loro Beach and Country Club? Did you like it? What was your experience?