And we took a bite on a piece of Santorini for our 8th anniversary.
Santorini, Greece has always been a dream destination for both Pao and I. Santorini is the epitome of a Greek island. Located in the southeastern part of the Greek mainland, it may be reached through a huge circular bay, which was once covered by an enormous volcano. But at some point during the 1500s, the volcano erupted, and with such brute force, a large amount of magma was ejected so the top of the mountain collapsed and the bay was formed from the sunken crater.
Pao and I have always wanted to explore Santorini and get lost in the traditional villages of the island built on tall cliffs, and just admire the priceless view the wonder brought by nature through the beauty brought over by disaster of the submerged volcano.
I just love the dome ceiling!
Well, anything that resembles Santorini will always be a must-visit destination for us– for the mean time– while waiting for the real thing. We once visited Mano’s Greek Taverna and Hotel
nestled within the confines of Tagaytay. And yes, I am a believer in “Good things come for those who wait”. Maybe if I wait some more, we shall find our way to the real Santorini.
In our attempt to chase after those dreams, we tried to experience the next best thing to Santorini– the Philippines’ very own Santorini found in Poro Point, in San Fernando City in La Union. And yes, we felt that it was a good idea to celebrate our 8th anniversary
as a couple as we escaped to La Union to breakaway in our local Santorini. We did not regret visiting Thunderbird Resort Poro Point
as it very much deserves its 5 stars as it delivered such an Grecian experience for our entire stay. The resort sits atop a peninsula, Poro Point, providing a magnificent view of the South China Sea.
And for the record, also in this same resort is where the local film “No Other Woman”, a box office film, was shot. And yes, the resort itself may be considered to be box-office in its own right.
Complimentary lemongrass drinks will welcome you upon setting foot in the resort. And yes, it was super yummy!
Besides the exquisite Grecian experience and superb five star accommodation, you may think that that’s all there is to Thunderbird Poro Point. One would not think that La Union is too rural to have an urban feature like a casino. But think again as La Union is becoming a convenient tourist destination, with Thunderbird bringing in luxury, comfort, and enjoyment in Poro Point in San Fernando City, La Union. It is known for its Fiesta Casino.
Besides the casino, the resort has a golf course, a small beach front, a nice pool, and lots of touristy locations perfect for photo opportunities . It is very much photogenic and would surely welcome weddings, receptions and prenups. I believe there are only 34 rooms, not a lot for a hotel, making the resort quiet and devoid of rowdy crowds. I agree with Pao when he said that “It was more than a hotel stay, it was an experience.”
Truly, it was an experience to remember. And what makes up an experience?
The rooms? Flawless! I couldn’t pick a complaint against Thunderbird as they provided us with such soft and plump pillows, great beds, and clean linens! The room was so comfortable that it was just so tempting to just stay in and forget about the outside world. Which of course, was a temptation too. It was just so hard to resist the beauty of Thunderbird!
We booked a Deluxe Room (which we got on sale woohoo!) Instead of the normal rate of Php 15,000.00, we got it for around Php 6,700.00 a night. And I must say, the rooms are well maintained as you are assured of a great time as you get to relax and unwind with such exquisite view! There are complimentary welcome drinks and an array of snacks that you can choose from the snack bar. The bathroom, with its modern design, comes with complimentary soap, shampoo, conditioner, loofah, toothbrush, and toothpaste.
To complete the experience of being in Thunderbird Poro Point, which has a Mediterranean feel in every way, it provided an experience of being so close to the sea as it has its own beach. It has a small strip of land devoted for the sandy shores of the beach. Although it is not powdery fine, being in the beach was still divine as the entire beach welcomes you to commune with nature and allow yourself to be kissed by the warm sun! It also has a board walk for those who just want to marvel at the beauty of nature!
Need I say more? The pool is just utterly jaw-dropping! It perfectly encapsulates the meaning of relaxation and unwinding! The atmosphere of being in Santorini is just everywhere, even when you are just basking under the sun, while you’re in the pool!
Even when you are taking your meals, be it breakfast, lunch, merienda or dinner, you are assured to still bite a piece of that Santorini paradise while indulging in such delectable meals. Although it may be a little pricey, the quality of the food being served does not compromise the name of the resort. Meals are served with great preparation and with great quality. Trust me, I couldn’t count how many times Pao and I ate. I was not even able to photograph the food we ate as we quickly devoured the food in its yumminess!
STROLLING AROUND THUNDERBIRD PORO POINT
It’s just Mediterranean everywhere! Although we weren’t able to visit the casino and the golf course anymore, since it rained during the late afternoon– our supposed schedule for our biking around the resort. But nevertheless, strolling around the resort be it by golf car, bicycle or on foot, would promise you to be awed.
When I say it’s photogenic, it really is! “No Other Woman” would not shoot here if it was not exquisite! I think our pictures will do the talking!
THUNDERBIRD AT NIGHT
Ooooh-la-laaaa! Define beauty. Define Santorini. Define dream-come-true.
And yes, we had to bid goodbye to Thunderbird Poro Point, our local Santorini, and headed towards the next town to re-acquaint ourselves with the wonderful art of riding waves– surfing! We headed the next day to the next town, in San Juan La Union—the Surfing Capital of Northern Luzon, where we spent the next remaining days to get stoked. And yes, we got addicted to surfing!
Thank you, Thunderbird!
- We boarded a Partas bus (Php 398.00) from Pasay and traveled around 7 hours (usually just 5-6 hours) going to San Fernando (the travel time was longer due to the cracks and holes on the rode brought by the recent typhoon Helen)
- We asked to be dropped off in “Monumento” in San Fernando where we hailed a tricycle.
- Posh as Thunderbird seems, we had to alight from our grand and luxurious tricycle, our only means of transportation going to Thunderbird. If you wish not to have a dyahe entrance, bring your own car. hahaha. But fret not, the hotel staff are not condescending in any way, it’s just a little awkward to enter such a posh hotel in a very luxurious three-wheeled ride.
- If you wish to go to San Juan, La Union to surf like what we did, you may opt to get the shuttle service of the hotel (lest you wish to ride a tricycle again). For Php 500.00 (for the entire vehicle regardless of how many you are) you will be taken to your surf resort of choice, less hassle.
- San Fernando City and Poro Point (being a military air base) have their own airports. If you are very much equipped to do chartered flights you may very well be in San Fernando City La Union in a jiffy!
- Commercial Flights like SEAir and Zest Air travels to San Fernando City as well. You may be on the watch for promos if you must!