Lanikai is a beautiful town in Oahu, Hawaii that boasts of one of the world’s most beautiful beaches according to TripAdvisor’s Traveler’s Choice 2014. In the Philippines, Lanikai is a charming exclusive resort looking out into the magnificent Davao Gulf.
Lanikai Heritage House, more popularly known as Lanikai Resort is part of Hijo Estates Resorts. The resort sits within a 760-hectare property owned by the Tuasons who also run banana and coconut plantations, and Banana Beach Resort. Acquired in the 1960s from Americans who planned to turn the land into a banana plantation, the family realized the dream and became the country’s pioneer banana exporters.
Today, Lanikai serves as the family’s vacation home and they have been so kind to allow visitors to experience the haciendero life.
Tagged as “A Heaven by the Sea”, Lanikai is situated at the spot where the Madaum River meets the Davao Gulf. Centuries-old trees line the path leading to the house which is an adorable old thing itself. The heritage house is of American Colonial design and has a charming front garden with more old sturdy trees and a charming breakfast deck.
Lanikai Resort caters to travelers looking for exclusivity and a break from the mundane city life ruled by technology. They offer the much-needed respite from modern living; the old house itself is a sign that it’s a place where life is simpler, and perhaps even happier.
The first level of the house is dominated by a large hall which featured works of Mindanao artist Kublai Milan at the time. The hall can be converted to accommodate seminars and even an intimate wedding venue/reception. The receiving area is also located here, along with the only room in the house with a television.
There are no TVs inside the guestrooms at Lanikai Resort, making every stay more about bonding with nature and your companions and less about what’s going on in the world outside. No keeping up with current events here, unless you go to the TV Room or connect to the resort’s WiFi.
Lanikai Resort has a total of 8 spacious rooms, 6 can comfortably sleep 4 people while two may accommodate up to 6. Each room is well-appointed and obviously designed with comfort in mind. There is a private bathroom and air-conditioning in all guest rooms.
Lanikai Resort’s dining room is also located in the first level. Brightly-colored fabrics reminiscent of the native T’nalak and fresh flowers picked from within the property adorn the tables. Guests are served their complimentary breakfast and other meals in this room.
Just outside the dining room is Lanikai Resort’s most stunning feature: the infinity pool. I’m guessing Hijo Estates Resorts has a thing for infinity pools, or maybe it’s just fitting since their resorts look out to sea. Sun beds line the pool sides along with well-trimmed shrubs that make it more charming. The pool exudes a romantic vibe, punctuating my impression that Lanikai Resort would be a perfect honeymoon destination.
Lanikai Resort’s rates are higher than that of its sister Banana Beach Resort. But then there’s a price for exclusivity and a taste of the haciendero life, right? Each guest at Lanikai Resort is treated as if they own the property and the house.
Room rates are inclusive of the following:
-complimentary breakfast for 2
-round-trip van transfer from Hijo Estates’ Davao City office
-free use of 2 mountain bikes
-free use of 2 fishing rods at The Spot
-free beach kayaking for 2 hours
Things To Do
Guests may join any of the tours on offer: Plantation Tour, Forest Tour and River Cruise. Horseback riding is also a fun pursuit. Kayaks, stand-up paddle boards, and other water sports equipment are also at the guest’s disposal.
The Spot, the property’s fishing area is the perfect place to while away lazy afternoons catching fish which can be prepared into a sumptuous dinner. If you’re not into fishing, you can just enjoy the view and the excellent food at the restaurant.
It is important to note that ALL guest activities within the property are supervised by able personnel to ensure safety and security.
In a message in Lanikai Resort’s website, one of the owners welcomes guests home. Indeed, Lanikai Resort can be your beautiful home by the sea, even for just a short while.