Through the invitation of my good friend Virgintina Garrido, the town’s Municipal Agriculturist, and in my desire to prove the veracity of the words being spread on the increasing influx of tourists and visitors to the town of Mainit, Surigao del Norte, Philippines, which I considered my second home while I was studying in an agricultural college situated in one of its progressive barangays, I visited the place last January 18, 2011. Truly, I saw for myself the reasons why the Kasili Lakeside Resort and Hotel has steadily become favorite destination for 4 concrete reasons:
- Its Location. Built on the edge of the awesome Lake Mainit, this lakeside resort and hotel offers the guests and visitors the chance to view the beauty of the 4th largest lake in the Philippines. Standing at the veranda of the presidential suite, you can have a total glimpse of the scenic view of the lake’s 17,340 hectares surface area and see for yourself the reasons why only Laguna de Bay, Lake Lanao and Taal Lake had surpassed this large body of fresh water surrounded by land in terms of area. If you happen to be there in the summer months of April to June, you can savor the purplish bloom of water hyacinths abounding its periphery. And, if you are one of the adventurous breed of nature lovers, you can take a ride on the resort’s M/B Mainit Kasili service boat and stroll on its 62.10 kilometers lakeshore, visit to the 31 lakeshore barangays in 4 towns, and cut across its placid and azure waters classified as Class A by the Environmental Management Bureau and wonder what lies on the floor of the lake’s deepest part measured at 223 meters.
- Its Facilities and Amenities. As you approach the site, you can view the concrete signage of the lakeside resort prominently installed on the roadside. As you enter the gate, you will definitely be struck by the resort’s sight and extra-ordinary ambiance. A walk further inside would bring you to the sprawling 200-capacity convention center. A few more steps and you would be welcomed by a comely fountain strategically located in front of the main building. Upon entering the reception center in the ground floor, you will be stunned by the sight of benches, tables and chairs made from centuries-old molave tree stumps and trunks neatly arranged on the foot of a large painting of Lake Mainit prominently displayed in the wall. After exchanging pleasantries with the nice receptionist, you would be ushered upstairs and view the equally large portraits of the town’s ecotourism destinations- the Silop Lake, Mapaso Hot Spring and Dayano Cave- to name a few conspicuously hanged along the corridor walls. A quick tour of the building would led you to its 3 dormitory-type rooms; 30 single-bed; 8 double-bed and 5 suite rooms all fully air-conditioned. When you open the door suite room’s exit door leading to the veranda, your eyes will be greeted with a spectacular view of 3 romantic swimming pools of varying sizes with its turquoise waters enticing you to have a quick dip or a languorous swim. The presidential suite fronting the lake emits the aura of executive setting. For the music-loving guests, two videoke bars are available featuring a live band every weekend. A tennis court is on hand to cater to the sports-minded guests. Most importantly, a restaurant is at hand offering, aside from the favorite dishes made from fishes that abound in the lake like the “kasili” or giant mottle eel, but also oriental and European foods depending on your taste.
- The Services. The lakeside resort is not only known for its scenic venue and comfortable facilities but also with its excellent and charming services. The staff running the place are very professional, polite and ever willing to meet all your requests from room service and any other guest-related concerns. On top of all, security service is provided 24/7.
- Its ownership. A product of visionary leadership of the town officials headed by its mayor, the Honorable Ramon Beltran Mondano, this lakeside hotel and resort is fully-owned and operated by the municipal government. Knowing pretty well all the facets of local governance being an agriculturist myself and Municipal Administrator-designate of my town, it takes extra-ordinary guts for the local chief executive of a municipality which is dependent on the internal revenue allotment from the national government to build such an awesome resort. I was told that the Mayor was even ridiculed at the start for conceiving such ambitious project and vigorously pursuing its implementation despite limited funds. But, I for one can attest that the decision and passion to build such a surefire income-generating tourist facility against all odds is worthy of emulation. Hence, for the professionals and the academe, your visit to this comely lakeside resort and hotel is a scholastic journey to observe local governance at its best.
Lakeside Resort And Hotel – Final Thoughts
Great sight, extra-ordinary facilities and amenities, heart-warming services and round-the-clock security are time-tested ingredients for perfect island vacations. The Kasili Lakeside Resort and Hotel is one place where you can come and actually forget your daily routine and busy urban life. Its ambiance, filled with serenity and beauty, is what mesmerizes its visitors. The resort stands out from the rest because of its unique architecture and the location simply proves to be icing on the cake. Any number of visits you do to this lakeside resort and hotel cannot take away the charm it offers to its guests and you will surely vow to have a return visit.