BORACAY! Reminiscing is over. Time to travel and relive the good times. Ride the clouds, tread on powdery sand, swim in glimmering blue waters, bask in the summer sun, sip on a cocktail, and raise the glass to the good life at your home on the island.

Where is home in Boracay? For the frequent urban escapees, there is a preferred address in the island. Is it Discovery Shores? That’s not a surprise.

Maybe this is why the first greeting one gets at the resort is “welcome home.” Home is a state of mind and it’s not easy to mark an X to a spot and claim it as home. It takes a collective effort by a village to recreate the warmth of a comfort zone. So far, the resort has been pretty successful in turning guests to “residents.”

How did it happen? It’s integrating look and location with Pinoy-rich hospitality and service, and good food. The formula is sure to win anyone’s heart.

Discovery Shores wowed everyone when it opened in 2007 with its contemporary architecture at the remote end of the five-kilometer stretch of the White Beach. Along Station 1 rose an organized stack of white blocks along a sloping terrain that presents a view of the famous shore, sea, and sunset from almost any point. Each cube holds a world of comfort, roomy living spaces brightened with natural light and appointed with amenities that can impress. The white resort blends with the beach landscape highlighting the green of the tropical flora. Over all, it’s a look that will never grow old.

Now, glaze it with a generous amount of warm Pinoy hospitality, pretty much how typical Filipinos would welcome visitors to their homes. Butlers appear from nowhere to cater to guests’ needs, like a readied beach blanket, cool thirst quenchers, even orange and cucumber slices to refresh the sun-drenched face; and brilliant toque-d heads of locally diverse tongues who work as one to create flavorful dishes that’ll transport anyone to grandma’s kitchen, if not somewhere where the cuisine originated. The Italian fare and steaks are molto delizioso at Forno Osteria and the melange of local flavors prepared with the finest ingredients from land and sea at Sand and Indigo restaurants can elicit the word delicious in different dialects.

The resort is in an area with a generous expanse of beach area in the island. “Residents” savor this sight at any time of day, from breakfast to dinner and cocktail hour as the sun kisses the horizon at day’s end. While it’s in a section that offers privacy, there’s a big space to frolic — and party! Thus, it became a most-sought after party venue in Boracay. It was a step-over-the-resort-property-line-for-a-great-time for the resort guests. Eventually, Discovery Shores became the IT address for the urban revelers.

From the end of the first decade of 2000 to the next, Discovery Shores was an island hotspot. It gained loyalty and won prestigious awards both locally and abroad. It created memories, developed family ties with and among its residents, and most likely, was instrumental in sparking romantic relationships.

Falling in love WITH Boracay is easy. Falling in love IN Boracay can be as well. All it takes is one gorgeous sunset as the backdrop to a private beachside dinner for two to woo a lover — which can eventually lead to the altar. An altar set up at the Discovery Shores beachfront with an aisle of powder white sand and sea breeze whispering sweet notes through the gentle lapping of waves. Where else should the love affair be consecrated?

And so the Discovery Shores story goes on. Couples return to celebrate anniversaries, then children are brought in for holidays and parents take them down the memory lane with stories of parties and how-I-met-your-mother/father. The kids grow up as the new generation of island merrymakers filling their memory banks with beach episodes, making new friends, falling in love with the island more with each visit, and perhaps falling in love, too. Through all these, the resort will remain in the center — the preferred residence in the island, the “home in Boracay.” It’s the Discovery Shores circle of life.

The scene in Boracay is ever-changing but the beauty and allure of the island remains the same. As a new batch of sun, sea and sand lovers are born, Boracay welcomes them to discover each unique sunset, discover a unique experience with every visit, and discover a new home in Discovery Shores. These are constant. Through the times, Discovery Boracay will always embody true Filipino hospitality — the warmth, the attention and the good food that wins hearts.

As another island visit is concluded for one guest, who was zoomed to the Caticlan Jetty Port on the resort’s speed boat, he smiled as he reminisced on a couple of feel good moments: the butler halting him from using a towel to clean his eyeglasses and pulls out a lens cleaner from his pocket; and discovering a new jewel on the menu — the delicious Beef Adobo savored over breakfast before check out.

You know how moms would pack a meal before heading out of the house because “baka magutom ka sa byahe”? The chef stepped out of the kitchen to say thank you for complimenting the dish then handed over a box of “pabaon” — sandwiches filled with the new favorite Beef Adobo. Doesn’t that make for a memorable farewell?

I believe it does. I am grinning ear to ear as I take a bite on one of the delicious sandwiches while waiting for the airport’s boarding announcement. The rest will be enjoyed at home in Davao. Yes Discovery Shores Boracay, I will be back in your loving arms again soon.

With the health restrictions relaxing, isn’t it time to breathe the sea air and relive the good times? Or make new ones at Discovery Shores, your home in the island paradise? The resort is eager to have you back and say, “Welcome home.”

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