BAGAC, Bataan – A multi-million peso-mountain resort here that will initially open on the second week of January next year wanted to uplift the lives of about 800 individuals in a community adjacent to it.
The resort known as Rancho Bernardo Luxury Villas and Resort sits in a 15.3-hectare hilly land in the agricultural sitio of Kakiputan in Barangay Ibis.
Kakiputan or narrow where only carabao-driven sledge used to pass is now a wide and well-paved road.
“Basically, ang gustong itulong ng Rancho sa mga tao sa Kakiputan ay ang umunlad ang kanilang buhay kasabay ng pag-unlad ng resort,” said Rancho Bernardo community development coordinator Isabel Lanada.
She said that the resort also wanted to be part in the strengthening of the organization of the community and the protection and conservation of the environment.
“Habang patuloy ang pagtanggap sa mga turista ng Rancho, patuloy naman ang pag-unlad ng kabuhayan ng mga mamamayan,” Lanada said.
She said that Rancho has launched a pilot project involving the beautifi cation of the façades of 25 houses in Kakipituan with P50,000 as first prize, and P20,000 and P15,000 as second and third prizes. Non-winners will receive P1,000 each as consolation prize.
The participants were initially given P5,000 each. Lanada said the beneficiaries formed themselves into a cooperative and will not rely on dole-out as part of people empowerment.
“Positibo ang pagtanggap ng mga tao sa project. Nagkakaisa sila para sa kalinisan at kaunlaran ng lugar,” she said.
“Masaya. Sa project na ito nakita ng mga tao na ang lugar namin ay maaliwalas,” villager Bella Aguisa said.
Myla Galang, another resident, said they cleaned the former garbage dumpsite in the sityo. “Nilinis namin para maganda tambayan namin. Masarap ang pakiramdam kapag malinis,”
she said. She said that they helped in cleaning even their neighbor’s surrounding. “Nagkaroon ng magandang samahan sa lugar dahil sa project na ito,” Galang said.
Former Bagac Mayor Ramil del Rosario is president of Golden Luck Consortium, mother company of Rancho Bernardo that takes care of the resort.
He said that the first phase of the project of 3.3 hectares that will build 30 luxury villas and other amenities has a budget of P600 million. Del Rosario said it is the first high-end resort in Bataan.
The villas will have a garden each and cabana with 24-hour butler service. The resort will have a helipad.
The former mayor said their target clientele is 80 percent Europeans.
Edwin Nojadera, Rancho purchaser, said it was named and patterned after Rancho Bernardo in San Diego, California.
Rent for the smallest villa is P45,000 overnight with free breakfast good for two persons and the biggest at P85,000 overnight good for four persons.
Nojadera said that small orders like pizza and coffee can be delivered by drone to guests of villas uphill. He said that curtains of the villas and other electronically-operated items are through voice command.
Bathtubs of the villas are 24-carat gold plated.
Ramon Martinez, Rancho general manager, described the resort “not gorgeous, not beautiful but stunning.”