Text and photos by: Bombette G. Marin
LEMERY, Iloilo may ring a little familiar to you, but did you know there is one family-friendly resort where visitors can take a breather and engage in a recreational and relaxing activity?
In the midst of scenic farmlands and mountain areas in the northeastern portion of the province lies a relatively new resort called Espia Inland Resort. The establishment was a rather big surprise to many Ilonggos as not a lot of folks know about it. No one would imagine there could be a decent resort to open around this isolated municipality. Visitors are pleasantly surprised to find a well-established and decent resort in the middle of nowhere.
Espia Inland Resort is a half-hectare property along the road of Barangay Poblacion, southeast zone that started out as a family vacation house of Ramon Espia Jr. and his family. It became an inland resort that officially opened in December 22, 2017.
The resort is a good venue for small corporate events, family and romantic celebrations and respite from hectic city life. It has a house that serves as its accommodation facility. Originally built as the vacation house of the family, it can be rented as a whole or per room. The house has two floors with a very spacious living room, a bar area, dining hall, a beautiful kitchen area and two rooms.
The second floor holds a mini living room and two more rooms, each with a private balcony or terrace with lounging area that offers beautiful rural scenery of bountiful farmlands and verdant mountain ranges. It also has a viewing deck overlooking the entire pool area.
And for those who are budget conscious, there is an air-conditioned bamboo hut that can accommodate three persons and includes 24-hour internet access and cable television. Bathroom is situated apart from the bamboo cottage.
Facing the main house are 16 open-bamboo cottages that frames the swimming pool both for adult and kids that opens from 8 a.m. until 10 p.m. A lifeguard is in full alert nearby.
Embark on appetizing food adventures while in the resort. Traverse the country with many flavours, all on one area. The have a mini-restaurant that offers main dishes, seafood sizzlers, pulutan, desserts, breakfast meals, crepes, soup, short orders, veggies, appetizers, sandwiches, value meals and beverages.
The resort has spacious parking with 24-hour security. Entrance fee is P40 per person.
Northern Iloilo is developing and resorts are popping up all over the area, from backpacker bungalows to smarter villas. There is accommodation available for every style of traveller, so you really cannot go wrong. Despite these developments, the area feels very authentic where the locals are so welcoming and the atmosphere is wonderful.
Espia Inland Resort is a welcome treat to the people of Lemery and its neighboring towns who wish to have a respectable place to show guests around the area. They do not need have to go as far just to entertain themselves or their guests.
Lemery is a fourth class municipality situated in the northeastern portion of the province. It is 87 kilometres or a two-hour and 25-minute ride from Iloilo City. It is bounded in the north by Sara; Ajuy in the west; Barotac Viejo in the east; and, San Rafael in south; and the towns of Dumarao, Maayon and Pontevedra in Capiz in the northwest. It has a total land area of 11,900 hectares that is politically subdivided into 31 barangays.
Lemery is populated by 30, 851 (2015 Census on Population) Lemernhons. Market day is every Wednesday. It annually celebrates it Religious Fiesta ever 28th of January in honour of Sr. Sto. Nino or the Child Jesus.
To get to the town, one can take a bus or van at the Baldoza Transport Terminal in Zone 3, Barangay Baldoza, Lapaz, Iloilo City.