By Jojie Alcantara
There are beautiful places in these islands that I do not particularly want to share, and have been hesitant to do so. As with all other favorite hideaways of mine, I reluctantly promote them on social media. I know, a bit selfish on my part. These are serene spots you just want to preserve and protect yet at the same time you want others to feel what you went through.
So The Red Barn Davao is one of those special spots in my heart. It’s not just the special bond with the owners, but because the place is such a delight away from home when you feel congested from every toxic pandemic news coming at you. Nestled somewhere up in Toril, it shies away from the city hustle. I stayed with my sister Karen and Chiqui, for some quiet deserving WE time.
How do I start describing The Red Barn? There are three houses apart from the iconic red one — the Green, Orange and Blue houses. We stayed in the Green House, with a loft and two open bed spaces, kitchen facilities and utensils, bathroom, accessories and a cozy, homey interior.
We bought supermarket food to cook but the caretaker can cook for you as well. This countryside property has a huge farm with a lush field of vegetation and variety of flowers, a bamboo path, trampoline and swings for the kids in us. There is a duck pond, a rabbiton, picnic tables, and a fire pit in the backyard for a bonfire under the skies. It exudes a tranquility needed by those seeking a relaxing break from today’s anxious times.
That chilly night we welcomed the rain, right after a spicy sangyeopsal dinner and coffee by the firepit. We had the place all to ourselves. The next day we forgot to view the sunrise over the horizon of Davao gulf because we overslept from late night chats filled with laughter. We picked fresh lettuce, arugula and basil to add to our salad preferences, with bottles of Natureal Juices.
I will not tell you about the trampoline and my sister. Okay, I will show you a few photos because laughter is the best medicine.
I cannot say when they will reopen to guests, as it is a private property used by the owners as well. The manager and daughter, Alyssa, is certainly very strict and committed to Airbnb’s 5-step enhanced cleaning process before accepting guests and after they leave, which goes reassuringly beyond safety protocols required today.
We were blessed with good weather, yummy healthy food, some quiet reflective time, and friendly caretakers. The only guests to arrive as we were leaving were a beautiful couple, makeup artist and photographer for a fun prenup all the way from Bukidnon (by the time this is posted they are already happily married).
After a long ride back to the city, we were contented with being silent but recharged, our minds still reliving the temporary solace of soft beds, cool sheets, warm conversations and midnight snacks on a cold, rainy night. I will leave my photos to your viewing.
Check out The Red Barn Davao website for more details