It is 40 minutes flight from Manila to Coron. SkyJet, the country’s first boutique airline, has four flights daily to Busuanga.
“We’re not just selling seats; we’re selling the experience,” says SkyJet Airlines president Dino Reyes Chua. “Flying with us is a lifestyle.”
Launched five years ago to serve the growing number of travelers to Batanes, the leisure airline soon provided flights to other dream island destinations such as Boracay, Balesin, Siargao, Busuanga. Its 80-seater BAE-146 aircraft, specializing in short take-off and landing, is perfect for small island airports with short runways.
Easily accessible to the airport, about 20 minutes away drive, is Sophia’s Garden Resort in Sitio Jolo, Brgy. 5, along the Coron-Busuanga Road.
Visitors would immediately notice its architectural design elements and minute detailing, eclectic but predominantly Spanish modern. Shards of nacre are framed and installed like wall reliefs. Small chartreuse porcelain jars on black glass shelf are set against tobacco-brown stone wall.
Though limited in the number of rooms, it offers the full hotel treatment, including a sprawling romantic garden with gazebos, swimming pool and jacuzzi, outdoor movie viewing.
Its restaurant El Comedor has an adventurous and inventive chef, Janjie Ocoma. Even common Filipino fare he renders into haute cuisine, such as baked baby back ribs flavored with cinnamon, or crispy pata with a hint of basil, all served on bone china. (There’s no bounds to this guy’s talent. Why, he can even perform a fire dance.)
The boutique hotel has partnered with Amika Travel & Tours, which takes visitors on tour packages around town and to neighboring islands.