‘Warm as the sun’: Pangulasian illuminated

Among the four island resorts under the El Nido Resorts umbrella, Pangulasian stands out for its luxury concept. This property in Bacuit Bay shares the resort group’s ecological vein, but each has its own particular lure.

Apulit Island in Taytay is deemed the “adventure” destination in an idyllic setting; Miniloc in El Nido is the “discovery” place for activity-filled holidays; and Lagen Island is the “sanctuary,” made distinct for its “lush, four-hectare forest and calm, shallow lagoon.”

While travelers may opt for their own kind of vacations — and at a time when custom travel itineraries are the rage — the enduring appeal of island getaways will always be in most bucket lists.

The Philippines offers a mélange of island resorts, but in the realm of true luxury, just a handful may be considered — among them, Pangulasian.

El Nido Resorts’ Mags Bautista, senior marketing and communications manager, tells Daily Tribune more about this island destination.

BEDROOM suite.

Daily Tribune (DT): What makes Pangulasian distinct among other island resorts?

Mags Bautista (MB): Pangulasian Island delivers luxury Filipino hospitality designed to match the stunning natural beauty of its setting in the Managed Resource Protected Area of El Nido-Taytay. It brings together sustainable practices and world-class comfort to offer naturally immersive experiences with its 750-meter stretch of white-sand beach, a house reef teeming with marine life, and a spectacular view of the sunrise and sunset — it definitely stays true to its local moniker as the “Island of the Sun.” For accommodations, it has a total of 42 contemporary Filipino villas built sustainably with cutting-edge “green” design.

PHOTOGRAPH COURTESY OF REBY TRINIDAD | FROLICKING along the 750-meter white sand at Pangulasian.

PHOTOGRAPH COURTESY OF REBY TRINIDAD | FROLICKING along the 750-meter white sand at Pangulasian.

DT: Would you say Pangulasian is the most luxurious resort in the Philippines? Why?

MB: No. While there are other resorts that have superior facilities and amenities, Pangulasian takes pride in its excellent customer relations. Guests always come back to the resort because of the hospitality of the staff that, you could say, is “warm as the sun.” The workforce brings in unparalleled efforts and dedication to ensure that guests have a truly memorable and enjoyable stay.

DT: What can you say about the amenities, facilities of Pangulasian? Any special services given to guests — personal butler, dine by the beach, room service?

MB: Although the resort does not have butler service, it offers room service from 8 a.m. until 10 p.m. The resort also offers private lunches outside Pangulasian and private dinners within the resort. Happy hour at the pool bar from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.

Pangulasian’s team takes extra care to provide a truly meaningful guest experience.

DT: What makes the food and beverage at Pangulasian special?

MB: Staying true to our commitment to sustainability, we source many of our products locally, importing internationally only to provide the occasional familiar option for international guests who would like a bit of a taste of home. We commit to support local suppliers with an emphasis on sustainable development. The resort offers unique drinks such as our signature thirst-quenching Tropical Spice, blended Watermelon, and Mango Ginger drink. Guests will also enjoy our very own Pangulasian Sunrise made with hand-squeezed dalandan juice paired with premium tequila.

STEAK with asparagus and potato slices.

DT: Are there any dishes that are a must-try for guests?

MB: Absolutely! Our head chef recommends the following set of dishes: Starting with Ensaladang Talong soup; Tomato and Shrimp for the main course; US Angus Rib eye with Pangulasian Bistek sauce; and Baguna Calamansi pie for the dessert.

DT: How about the beach and sports/water activities? Some say the waters are better for activities like snorkeling rather than swimming. Would you agree?

MB: Though nestled in the protected marine seascape of El Nido, guests of Pangulasian can enjoy various water activities. Through the regular island-hopping tours, guests can engage in kayaking, snorkeling and swimming activities all across Bacuit Bay to better appreciate the beauty of El Nido. The crystal-clear waters with its sustainably managed house reefs make El Nido a good spot for snorkeling and diving. We also offer more immersive activities like the mangrove cruise in Aberawan, bottom fishing with the local fishermen, and the hiking trail through the forest of Pangulasian.

DT: What do most guests like to do at the resort?

MB: Guests, mostly foreigners, are fascinated by El Nido’s big and small lagoons, its pristine beaches with crystal clear waters, and of course, its stunning limestone rock formations. As such, Pangulasian guests always look forward to hop on the daily complimentary island tours and join the morning snorkeling to see the coral reefs and spot some black-tip reef sharks.

DT: How does one get to Pangulasian? What does the resort do to make guests feel relaxed and comfortable getting there?

MB: Airswift offers daily flights from Manila to El Nido, Palawan. Travel time is approximately one hour long. Guests are welcomed by one of Pangulasian’s tour guides upon arrival at the airport. They are then transported to the Jetty Lounge for refreshments and a bathroom break. After which, a 30-minute boat ride takes guests across the Bacuit Bay to Pangulasian Island Resort.

DT: What makes a stay worth the splurge for guests of the resort?

MB: As what most people would say, “Money can’t buy happiness,” but here in Pangulasian, the island team takes extra care to provide a truly meaningful guest experience — all the way from their arrival at Lio airport, to their festive welcome at the resort, through guided tours and activities, and up until we bring them back to the airport for their departure. With its spacious villas, its local and international selection of dishes, and island tours and activities, the team strives to deliver on the promise of excellent service and hospitality.