LOS BAÑOS, LAGUNA, March 7, 2006 (MALAYA) A legend of a man, who went by the name Antonio Roa Mercado, was responsible for growing this enchanting forest and transforming it into a Club that now beckons the weary, the dreamy, the adventurous and the contemplative.

Antonio Roa Mercado, Tony to many, was once a very busy corporate guy but because of a heart problem decided to start life anew when he was in his late 50s after a bypass. With a path of rice farm that he and his wife Monina discovered in Puypuy, in the outskirts of Los Baños, Laguna – the beneficence of Mount Makiling with rich volcanic topsoil, abundant rainfall, with a pampering gentle climate – he began the artwork on a reclusive forest, a garden, a hide-out.

Tony created a meandering brook and planted full grown narra trees. He planted trees of the old and new varieties, trees that flower in season and trees that are abloom throughout the year. He built shelters and with the early birds in the lagoon like herons, egrets, munias, doves, sunbirds, rails, swifts, robins and squads of mayas, Tony spent many hours of sunrise alone, praying and thinking.

In 1996, Tony and his family decided to open the gates of his previously private paradise to visitors – to share the serenity, the unbelievable contentment, and the peace of mind that the place generously provides.

Today, five years after Tony passed on, the Forest Club, under the care of his son Wawel Mercado, has blossomed into a full-grown recreation area, a perfect alternative to far-away weekend hideouts that provide the same luxury, exclusivity and privacy.

Retreat groups are also welcome and the facilities at the Forest Club provide the ideal venue: two conference halls, a large dining room, several break-out areas, two large sleeping suites and four cottage bedrooms. Its scenic atmosphere that readily rejuvenates encourages and inspires everyone to think deep and think big.

Corporate out-of-town trips have always been the ideal, to give employees a distinctive atmosphere for team-building and relaxation, especially companies that place particular importance to strengthening relationship and prioritizing harmony at work. In this light, Forest Club aims to excel in the corporate arena, matching extracurricular needs with deeply embedded family values. It has catered to a variety of occasions: beach outings, office parties; reunions, seminars, etc. – all in the interest of maintaining harmony in the workplace.

This option however is not without business challenges. It would mean time away from production. Some hesitation from employees to go on long trips away from home are to be expected, especially from those with young children. There is also the issue of expenses for such undertaking.

But whatever the occasion, The Forest Club welcomes visitors with facilities and amenities to meet every requirement, as well as packages to suit every budget.

For inquiries, text 0917 831 2583.

Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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