It is a peacefully secluded window to paradise; a place where I shared the view with only a few; where the oceans seemed out of reach and the clouds are just above my head. When the skies are clear, the majestic shoal known as the White Island appears at a distance. There are no sounds of ocean waves but only the rustles of the leaves as the strong winds continually blow. I soaked in a lot of sun and mountain breeze as I stood there. I ran and danced like a child around barefoot – feeling ticklish with the grass between my toes and the damp earth beneath my sole. I haven’t even left but I know that I’ll be back again soon because these things are just priceless. I know that this is what my soul craves for.
This is what Bintana sa Paraiso in Binunsaran offered to me.
About Bintana sa Paraiso
Bintana sa Paraiso is a luxury boutique hotel and resort known in the province and island of Camiguin for its infinity pools with the most superb view. One of which is seated at the foot of Mt. Hibok-Hibok, the Bintana sa Paraiso Nasaag which is the Greek-Mediterranean inspired one; and the the other that is Bali-inspired sits atop Binunsaran. This year, they will be opening another Bintana sa Paraiso but in Siquijor.
Since we would like to make our stay in the island worthwhile, we gave Bintana sa Paraiso a shot and booked a room.
Our Bintana sa Paraiso Binunsaran Experience
The stairs of a room directly facing the pool and the stunning view of the hotel and resort Book via Booking.com here Book via Agoda here
The drive up to Binunsaran alone is relaxing already. Towering trees lined up on each side of a long narrow winding road. There were also parts of the road that resembles the coconut street of Siargao. It took us around 10 – 15 minutes on habal-habal til we reached Bintana sa Paraiso. We arrived at the hotel resort late in the afternoon. Just in time for the sun turning everything else golden. The moment that we arrived, my heart raced. A rush of excitement filled me in as I got a glimpse of what the resort has to offer. A number of tall coconut trees and other kinds surrounded the place. Leaves rustled with every blow of the winds. Past these is the horizon where the blue skies meet the vast ocean. The air couldn’t be fresher. The sun was perfectly warm at the golden hour. Indeed, it’s a window to paradise just like what its name says.
The staff members of the hotel politely assisted us from the moment that we set foot in Bintana sa Paraiso. Everyone greeted us with wide smiles. They insisted on carrying our stuff to our room and we were handed with a refreshing glass of lemonade as welcome drinks. They attended to our requests well.
The rooms and villas of Bintana sa Paraiso Binunsaran. Each room has its own balcony with chairs, mats or hammocks. It is facing the ocean and White Island can be clearly seen. Book via Booking.com here Book via Agoda here
There are five villas in the resort and our room was at the upper floor of the second one. It was naturally overflowing with tropical and island vibes. Walls are white-washed minimally designed with three frames of an image of tropical leaves hung above the headboard of the bed. An air-conditioning unit is fixed on the wall. A twin bed sits in the middle with a bedside table and lamps on it. No cabinets and drawers for stuff. The floors are made of bamboo wood. The washroom is surprisingly spacious! It has hot and cold shower, toilet with bidet and a lavatory. We were provided with towels, shampoo and soap.
One of my favorite spots, our very own balcony just outside our bedroom! Book via Booking.com here Book via Agoda here
Just beyond the floor-to-ceiling glass walls and door draped with white curtain is the picturesque view of the vast ocean and the horizon. It makes the hotel and resort literally live up to its name, Bintana sa Paraiso meaning ‘window to paradise’. Slide the door, get a real dose of fresh air and be one with paradise as you step out of the room to the balcony. Ah, my favorite spot. This was where our sumptuous breakfast was served. The feeling is just beyond words. Nothing could be more perfect than feeling the sunshine on your skin on a good swing in the hammock or while enjoying a good breakfast.
The Food by Josh + Luke Restaurant
The plates of morning goodness!
The night before, we were asked for our breakfast preference (Filipino or American). Then, we were offered choices upon choosing a cuisine. We had both Filipino and American: tocino and rice for the Filipino and bacon and wheat bread for the American. Initially, I expected just a simple plate of Tocilog (Tocino, Sinangag (fried rice) and itlog (egg) and a slice or two of bread with bacon on the side. Then, the moment of truth came. It was indeed a reality better than expectation! We were served with abundance in our plates of morning goodness! The serving is big, the fruits were fresh, the presentation was remarkable. It channeled my morning being! I felt so grateful for mornings again. I mean, there goes the good food on our table at a balcony with the best view! What more could I wish for? Our plates were served with brewed coffee, too.
You can either dine at your balcony or at the restaurant
Breakfasts are also prepared by their very own Josh + Luke Restaurant. Apart from these, they also have pizza, pasta, fried noodles, burgers and more and these are reasonably priced. It might seem overpriced when looking at the menu but when the food arrives, you’ll surely take your words back. They’ve got really big servings and the taste is exceptional. We did not buy anything from the town proper before we checked in – no snacks, no drinks, no anything. We ordered our food from their restaurant and we’ve got no regrets about that.
The meaty pizza, our favorite in Joh + Luke Restaurant’s menu!
Things to Do
Bintana sa Paraiso Binunsaran is nestled on the mountainside of Hibok-Hibok. It is quite far from the town proper, frequently visited tourist destinations and the beach as well but it gives quite a good view of the ocean and the stunning White Island. Apart from sight seeing, the following activities can be enjoyed in the resort:
1. Swimming. The resort has its own swimming pool. Thus, craving for some good dip in the waters while looking at the oceans afar can still be satisfied.
The view from the balcony of our room. Can you see White Island? Book via Booking.com here Book via Agoda here
2. Yoga. The Binunsaran branch of Bintana sa Paraiso has its own Yoga Studio Wellness Center. It is quite the best spot to do some meditation and finding one’s center as the whole place is just so peaceful with a spectacular view. Morning meditations are held at 8:00 AM everyday while yoga is done for 75 minutes everyday at 9:00 AM and 5:00 PM. Classes may be booked with them.
3. Get a Massage. Relaxation with their very own spa starts at $30.00 up to $50.00. They offer foot and whole body massage, body scrub and facial treatments, too!
4.Kawa Bath. Hot tubs at the mountainside is also one of the best ways to relax. Bintana sa Paraiso, on the other hand, offers a better hot tub experience! The Kawa bath can be enjoyed for only Php 450.00. Worry not for they will not boil you to tenderness! They only keep the fire low, enough to heat the water at a temperature that the skin can still tolerate. They also put flowers in the bath making it extra special. The bath itself is good and relaxing but the view, as always, just made it even better.
My Kawa Bath Experience
Now this is the view that I have been talking about! Isn’t it breathtaking?
5. Taste the goodness at Josh + Luke Restaurant. There are no nearby stores and restaurants but the resort itself has its own, the Josh + Luke Restaurant. Their food is of great value! My favorites are their breakfasts, of course, and their pizzas partnered with their fruit shakes. The menu is actually a combination of Filipino, American and Italian cuisine. You can find the menu here.
Morning dip! Get cool with the pool! Book via Booking.com here Book via Agoda here
Bintana sa Paraiso Tour Packages
The resort also offers their own tours around the island of Camiguin. The rates are as follows:
1. Package A: Whole Day Camiguin Island Tour
For Php 2,500.00, the guests will be toured around the island of Camiguin for 8 hours. Exceeding hours means an additional Php 200.00. Transfers are via multicab that can accommodate up to four people. Entrance fees will be shouldered by the guests. The following places are the ones to be visited:
-Walkway to the Old Volcano
-Gui-ob Old Church
-Soda Water Swimming Pool
-Sto. Nino Cold Spring
-Hibok-Hibok Ardent Spring
-Bintana sa Paraiso Binunsaran Pugad Photo Shoot (Dining) this is optional as it has an extra fee
2. Package B: Camiguin White Island Tour
For Php 2,000.00 for a maximum of four pax, the guests can already enjoy a hassle-free White Island tour inclusive of boat rides, hotel pick up, bottled water and entrance fee for two people. Additional pax will have to pay an amount of Php 50.00 per head. Pack lunch and Massage Therapists may also be made avaiable upon request but with necessary fees. These are not included in the package rate.
3. Package C: Mantigue Island Tour
For Php 2,500.00 good for 4 persons, the marine sanctuary and laid back beach of Mantigue Island can be enjoyed. The rate is also inclusive of hotel pick up and drop off, boat transfers and bottled water. Entrance fee at Php 50.00 shall be shouldered by the guests.
4. Package D: Advanced Hiking to Mt. Hibok-Hibok
For Php 3,000.00, two pax can already enjoy the package that includes an eight-hour service of a licensed Camiguin tour guide, lunch and water.
One of the best ways to enjoy the island of Camiguin is through diving around with a scooter. Rental is at Php 500.00 per day with gas not included. Driver’s license and wearing of helmet are a must.
One of the most photographed spot in the resort, the Pugad (the nest)
How to get there
Bintana sa Paraiso Binunsaran is some 8 kilometers away from the town proper. Thus, it is advisable that you rent a motorbike prior to coming to the resort. If you prefer to just stay and enjoy everything about it, you can just inform the front desk officer (usually stationed at Josh + Luke Restaurant) about getting a habal-habal who would drive for you down to the town when you are about to leave.
From Benoni Port or Camiguin Airport
1. Take a van, jeep or tricycle to Mambajao Terminal. Fare ranges from Php 25 to Php 30.00.
2. From Mambajao Terminal, charter for a habal-habal or motorella. Tell the driver to drop you off Bintana sa Paraiso in Binunsaran. Fare is at Php 100.00 per head.
They also arrange pick up and drop off to and from Benoni Port or Camiguin Airport. The following are their rates:
1. Airport to Binunsaran – Php 800.00/ way ($16.00)
2. Seaport to Binunsaran – Php 1,000.00/way ($20.00)
The rooms are Instagram-worthy inside and out! Book via Booking.com here Book via Agoda here
We were also told that they also arrange transfers to and from Bintana sa Paraiso to Agora Terminal in Cagayan De Oro through a van. If you are exiting through Cagayan de Oro, you may ask them regarding this tranfer.
For more queries reservation or booking, you may reach them at:
Anne Elizabeth Gumiran, also known as Queenie, is a 20-something, full-time public school teacher, a part-time travel blogger and a freediver. She started putting her stories of adventures and misadventures into words and pictures in 2017 and continues to do so as she shares her advocacy, Sustainable Traveling.