Sunday, January 31, 2010

Riverstone Castle Resort, Argao

And there we were, finally! Complete name: Riverstone Castle Resort. Location: Jomgao, Argao, Cebu! How did I know? I read one posted announcement on a tackboard just outside this castle. Yes indeed, it looks like a castle. Fantasyland of some sorts! At least when you just look at it from the outside! Whatever, I liked having had an unexpected find in the outskirts of Argao. Aliw factor!

Yeah yeah, hark to us the Marcos generation, where school books and pastimes were the same, reading Cinderella, Snow White, King Arthur, Humpty Dumpty and Rapunzel. I was awestruck to find a ‘real’ castle-looking ‘castle’ in the hinterlands of a hinter town. What a setting. Golly, even as we alighted from that trike, I was like hoping to see knights and warriors on long-maned horses galloping about. Whahehe, what a dream!

So we entered paying a 40-peso entrance each. Excitedly!

From the 'castle' entrance, you enter a nice garden and you see this main building (okay, castle)! We marveled if that gangplank could really be raised or lowered using those chains. Looks like, but you have to have a squad of servants to do that hahaha. Nice. And those 'guards' are life-size no less!

Hey, both sides of that 'bridge' (you see those brown colored steel frames?) are live crocodiles! Wow, talagang kinareer ang castle effect!

Entering the door, you head right to find this realistic "dungeon bar". I said realistic cuz its dark in there and it goes a little bit down from floor level, cool too like many cellars and all the works. Aliw!

See the blue light on the floor? Part of the floor is glass, and there are eerie looking things there, there's water and kind of "treasures" effect! Here's a clearer view of the glass floor:

Oh if you head left from main entrance instead of coming to this dungeon bar, there is some kind of an eating area (banquet hall of the king baga!) and it is also dark and cool and yes, eerily much like an ancient castle!

They built this 'castle' on the slope of a hill without totally carving the ground. So some parts of the facility are up there, which makes for this entire resort a multi-leveled structure. There are narrow dark stairs and many passages that connect various areas in mazelike splendor kids and adults would much enjoy.

Here's another example: from second level, there is some kind of a deep-well thing but if you peep in, you'd see it is that eating area downstairs. This thing comes completely decorated with a rope as if for you to climb down upon if you wanted to hehe!

Well, there is a real brightly illuminated (by the sun) restaurant also at second level. They have a wide array of choices, and they even serve pizza!

The restarant and rooms viewed from the pool area:

So there's a swimming pool? Yes there is amidst plants, vines and trees - reason probably why they covered it with a net!

There is even a zipline that starts from here:
and it goes there:
But, while sturdy, its just a few meters long. Wonderful enough for little kids, I guess!

That's not all, they also have a collection of caged animals and birds that becomes like a mini-zoo up the higher portions of this hill.

Alright, let's leave this fantasy castle behind. Back to Argao proper we went, excited to catch any of those delectably aromatic lechon-manok we saw and smelled grilling earlier. But let’s do that next.


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