I am not certain if a lot of people are like me, but when I was a kid I have always dreamed of living in a tree house. May it be just a play house or a permanent living space, I have always considered a tree house as a thing of dreams.
It seems like the universe is conspiring to make that dream a reality when a few days after signing up on AirBnB, I came accross a tree house not too far away–in Mataasnakahoy, Batangas. My heart skipped a beat especially when I saw that a night’s stay would only cost PhP 700!
One weekend last month I was finally able to book the place. The owner gave us precise directions on how to get there via public transportation. And so on a slightly rainy Sunday morning, my friend Angel and I arrived to this magical place.
The tree house is called Kapusod, as the property is right beside the Pusod Taal Lake Conservation Center (TLCC), whose founder, Ipat Luna, is also the owner of. If you have not guessed yet, this means the tree house is right in front of Taal Lake. How awesome is this?
We arrived in Kapusod at about 10am, which is a bit earlier than the check-in time but we were greeted with great smiles by Ka Betty the caretaker and Ipat’s husband, Howie Severino.
Ka Betty invited us to sit down and asked if we wanted coffee. We couldn’t really concentrate because we were still trying to take it all in.
After a short while, Howie talked to us, asked us a few questions, then offered to show us the tree house.
THE TREE HOUSE
tree house is a pretty small space but is comfortable for two guests.
Inside is a mattress that serves as a bed with mosquito net. If you’re uncomfortable sleeping on the floor, the mattress can be laid on the bamboo chair that extends into a table.
There are two green plastic chairs as additional seating and perfect for coffee mornings.
There is an available sink to wash hands or brush your teeth. At first we could not find the switch to turn it on. We realized afterwards that we had to turn one of the rocks for water to come out. Very creative!
Please take note that only biodegradable soap is allowed to be used in the sink and outdoor shower of the tree house. This was indicated in the airbnb listing so we came prepared. Before arrival, the owner, Ipat, approved of Human Nature soap.
My friend and I brought a little bit of food for light meals since we did not know what food options we will have.
We brought crackers, pesto spread (so good!), 3-in-1 coffee and some apples. Bringing food became handy because we always had something to eat in between meals.
For main meals, the caretaker, Ka Betty, cooked them for us at PhP 250 per person, per meal. This seems a little steep but we agreed to it for the convenience. Free kapeng barako was available at all times.
Small carinderias are also available a short walk outside of the property.
THE PROPERTY and AMENITIES
As previously mentioned, the tree house is not the only accompdation on the property. They have open cabanas (can be closed with curtains), private rooms above the dining/receiving area, and beds in the TLCC building next door.
The tree house does not have its own bathroom, only a sink and outdoor shower. The actual comfort rooms are in the mess area at the back of the dining area.
Aside from basic amenities, there is a separate dining area, a dock, a small river and of course Taal Lake itself in its full glory. 🙂
My friend Angel and I decided to spend a day at the tree house to relax, unwind and be close to nature. Like most people in the corporate world, our days are mostly hectic and stressful. Those things we wanted to experience were definitely achieved.
I had one of best sleeping experiences in my life. I was also able to catch a nap in the afternoon when I intended to read a book. Haha! Do not worry about sleeping on the floor. I actually loved it! You see, whenever the wind blows, the tree house sways and dances with it.
At night, you would hear the sounds of nature–mostly crickets and frogs. It did not bother us at all. The sounds even aided in lulling us to sleep.
The food prepared by Ka Betty was fantastic! I especially love the Pako salad and lemon grass iced tea she made.
One day spent in the tree house is simply not enough. Add to that the fact that a storm just left the country and there were still scattered rainshowers during the day. We were not able to do kayaking because of this.
But even with both factors at play, we still had a great stay at the tree house. Just cool, clean breeze and the spectacular view of Taal Lake in the morning as I sipped my morning coffee made up for everything.
Summary of Important Information:
-We paid about PhP 850 via airbnb for a one night stay
– Meals are at PhP 250 per person, cooked by Ka Betty
– Unlimited kapeng barako is available
– Bathrooms are communal, only sink and outdoor shower is available in the tree house
– Kayaks can be rented at PhP 300
– Tours to Taal Lake crater are available
How we got to the tree house:
1. We took a Lipa-bound bus from Buendia JAM Liner terminal
2. We got off at Tambo exit (marker is Jollibee on the left)
3. We crossed the street then took a jeepney to Mataasnakahoy (minimum fare)
4. We got off 7-11 then took a tricycle to Pusod TLCC (PhP 80 for 2)