Currimao in Ilocos Norte is a quaint and quiet town just a few municipalities from Ilocos Sur and to Laoag City. Little do people know that there is a resort called Sitio Remedios which is a sight to behold with its Ilocano-inspired houses and a beach that has a beautiful sunset. It is owned by the country’s top neurologist, a dedicated art connoisseur and philanthropist Dr. Joven Cuanang. I was there during the 2017 holy week where my group and I did a fashion show on Black Saturday to give tribute to the weavers of the Ilocano fabric called inabel specially woven by national treasure Magdalena Gamayo of Pinili. The works of two Ilocano designers were featured – the children’s wear of Nina Corpuz of Batac City and the creations of Edgar Madamba of San Nicolas.
The old world is ever present in the resort. Cobblestones line up the pathways going to the main area and the houses (or villas). Dr. Cuanang wants to preserve Sitio Remedios this way so that it will be different from nearby resorts and in the province as well.
One can experience nature at its best because the houses are surrounded by trees and plants. The architecture is reminiscent of the old Ilocos era sans wifi and television.
The beach and its fine sand is something worth traveling to the north. The sunset is picture-perfect. The ambience is romantic.
Breakfast is made up of Ilocano fare which are palatable to all types of visitors. If guests are plenty, dinner by the sea is something that Sitio Remedios offers.
Wedding receptions, family reunions, company outings and other special events are held in Sitio Remedios. It has venues where these can be held.
Interiors made from indigenous materials to have a rustic ambience that is typically Filipino and Ilocano are sights to behold. The red tiles that were used during the olden times are everywhere.
A fountain, a bellfry and a chapel are some of the many features the Sitio Remedios offers. It is a town within a town. It is a commune rather than just an ordinary resort.
When one wants to find peace and quiet away from the maddening crowd in the metropolis, Sitio Remedios is a perfect place to go to. Personally, it is one place where I found the quietness that I needed much.
Sitio Remedios can be reached via bus that ply the Laoag route. You may tell the conductor to stop at the Currimao crossing and take a tricycle to the resort which is just nearby. By air, you may take the flights going to Laoag and rent a van that will take you to Sitio Remedios.
Sunday is usually church day and time to laze around either in your own room or anywhere else where you can just roam around without thinking of work or other matters. But March 5, 2017 was a Sunday that was both educational, art appreciation day and an awakening one for me. I was treated to my eyes’ delight. Thank you to Edgar Madamba for bringing me to Pinto Art Museum located in Antipolo City. The owner, Dr. Joven Cuanang, is a neurologist and an art afficionado/collector who thought of making a museum out of his collections.
The two-hectare property consists of several Mediterranean-type buildings which house galleries of paintings and artworks of different media. Pinto Art Museum is not only a haven for artists, it is also a tourist attraction of sorts. With the many people who visited the place both local and international tourists, this art sanctuary is definitely a must-see and should be part of a tourism package.
Artworks of different forms can be seen in the whole complex. From the classic paintings to the digital art forms to installations and even artistic graffitis are displayed for everyone’s appreciation. It cannot be considered an overload of artistic works because everything in the museum is worth seeing. It is a soothing venue of artists’ expressions. It is simply a heaven of artistic proportions.
Walking from one gallery to another has a feeling of going through a labyrinth which keeps one surprised as what the next area offers. Despite the expansive galleries and the stairs that you would walk through, there was not a feeling of tiredness as the artworks were so interesting and invigorating.
Since the area is so big, the owner decided to bring in Cafe Rizal for the needs of visitors who get hungry while going around. It has three restaurant in all the levels of Pinto Art Museum.
The edifices inside the complex are also worth appreciating. Buildings which are inspired from architectural structures the can be seen in the Mediterranean, the Carribean as well as local ones were built to serve as galleries of the artworks. They, themselves, are visual delights.
Pinto Art Museum is where the respected masters and the new millennium geniuses converge and unite. They share one common cause – to bring art to the people.
It is surprising to note that people from all ages were in the art venue on a Sunday. It is one place that has crossed the boundaries of ages. Young and old were there so admire art at its best. Locals as well as foreign visitors mingled and appreciated what Pinto Art Museum has to offer. The P200 entrance fee is all worth it.