The great road that runs between Digos City in Davao del Sur and the municipality of Padada is broken by the closure of Guihing Bridge, which has been closed to the public for repairs. Those coming from southern Davao del Sur (Padada, Sulop, Malita, and even General Santos City) would have to detour to a 2 km road of god-forsaken, arid, dusty rough roads that has practically cut off the southern folks from Davao City. In the midst of all these government-neglected infrastructure lies a relatively new resort called Seagull Inland Resort and Spa.
The resort started as a firing range in 2002, then the swimming pool was constructed. From then on, the place grew into a resort that officially opened last 2005.
The establishment is a rather big surprise as not a lot of folks know about it. I have heard about this resort as far back as 2002 when a big signage was installed along the highway, but no one really believes there could be a decent resort to open around this dusty area. When I finally decided to visit it, I was pleasantly surprised to find a well placed and decent resort in the middle of nowhere. Spanning 5 hectares, the resort houses a main building that contains the reception area, a small, congested gym, a spa with Jacuzzi, and – upstairs – several dorm –type accommodations for 4 and 8 persons. Facing the main building is a park that has gazebos. It leads to the big swimming pool and a small chapel. Just a block away from the entrance is a mini-zoo, which is basically a sanctuary of few creatures which includes ostriches, horses and 3 pythons.
Owned by Elizabeth Dureza, wife of the former congressman Jesus Dureza, now Presidential Adviser on Muslim Affairs, the resort is a welcome treat to locals who wish to have a respectable place to show guests around Davao del Sur. They don’t have to go as far as the Davao City just to entertain themselves or their guests. The entrance fee of PhP110 already includes a guided tour around the whole span via a gasoline-run cart or a battery-charged tram-like service. It also includes use of thegym, and the swimming pool (which is just 5 feet deep but has the width of an Olympic-sized pool), which has a sprawling tent at the middle, and a miniature area for the kids, as well as a Jacuzzi area. Three cottage structures stand nearby, which can be rented by overnighters. The good thing about these accommodations is that they are being rented per room, instead of per person. For those who are budget conscious, the dorm-type rooms are a treat.
Each 5-hectare land also houses firing ranges. In fact, the mini-zoo area has about 7 enclosures for firing competitions. A cozy restaurant is located near the smaller firing range at the back of the main building. Those who love their facials, massages, and foot spas can avail of theeir well-equipped amenities (Swedish and Shiatsu priced at P350 only). Personalities who have graced the location include former President Fidel V. Ramos, a Malaysian Prince and some politicians. I was surprised to have found a place in-conveniently hidden in the bowels of Davao del Sur. Who would have thought!
Detour road. The government of Davao del Sur and Guihing doesn't seem to have any clue what to do with the Guihing Bridge which has been neglected for years now. Not even the previous elections could make their tiny brains work. They have earlier closed half the bridge for nothing. Years after, they totally closed the bridge off, facilitating a detour to this dusty craggy road, making travel to Davao City very difficult and uncomfortable. I pity the daily commuters and their vehicles passing by these roads. At night, you pass along plantations of bananas and sugarcane in the uneasy darkness of these streets. Sometimes there are army checkpoints halfway through. Unfortunately, work has halted completely. There are absolutely NO work being done for several months now - or even for a year! These stupid politicians don't have any intentions of getting work done... not until election time, which is 2 years away! In fact, they have circulated word that work on the bridge construction/rehabilitation will be finished 2 years rom now - in time for the 2010 elections. How convenient! It seems sure though that by election time, they would have placed steel bars and nothing else. Let's wait for the next election to finish 1/4 of the bridge. Hahaha!