The Henry charms Dumaguete | Inquirer Business
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The Henry charms Dumaguete

/ 02:05 AM November 13, 2022

Now that revenge travel is in, do contribute to pushing the 7.6 percent gross domestic product growth rate even higher by traveling within the country instead of abroad. Head to a town you haven’t visited yet!

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Consider Dumaguete. The Henry, which we know for its charming space in Pasay, now has a sprawling 32-room boutique resort in this city, as it took over the legendary South Sea Resort. Overlooking the Southern Tañon seascape, it has eight villas scattered throughout the garden of 70-year old Botong and Talisay trees.

The hotel (thehenryhotel.com and thehenryhotel on Facebook and Instagram) also has a pool lounge and a dive pool but here’s the come-on for foodies: they have also set it up so that you won’t even have to leave the hotel to experience Dumaguete’s best eats!

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They have seven resto choices for your gustatory indulgence: Noelle’s Brunch Bar, Café Sans Rival at The Henry, Coffee Collective, Si Señor, Negrense Microbrewery, Red Kitchen and The Dining Room. It’s a one-stop shop for several of Dumaguete’s fave eateries, from the classic sans rival to the new microbrewery down to the famous frozen and bottled items of Red Kitchen for pasalubong. These restos have their own spaces around Dumaguete. For instance, Cafe Sans Rival has its main branch along Rizal Boulevard, while Negrense Brewery has its main branch at the boulevard along Noblefranca Street.

SWEET TOOTH Cafe Sans Rival at Henry Resort Dumaguete —Contributed photos

At The Henry, Noelle’s Brunch Bar shines with its sunny ambiance, serving waffles, eggs benedict (they have a signature sausage eggs benedict) and all your breakfast favorites.

The dining room serves Filipino food but with a twist. For chicken, they offer pyanggang, a Mindanaoan delicacy of chicken braised in turmeric, onions, lemongrass, ginger, siling haba chilis, garlic, coconut milk and ground burnt coconut. Instead of the usual pancit palabok, they serve palabok negra using squid ink. And they also serve a signature deep fried dumpling with chunks of prawn inside.

Si Señor is the resident Spanish restaurant, offering various kinds of paella, including paella mixta and paella negra. Their secret to the perfect paella: it’s “when the crackling top of caramelized seafood is mirrored by the crunchy lining of socarrat and softened by the succulent center.” They go the extra mile by offering special pre-order only items like asado de cordero. Also on the menu are some of the country’s best seafood: lobster and diwal. For a Spanish flavored twist to pasta, their carbonara uses their signature Spanish chorizo.

WATERING HOLE Negrense Microbrewery

And for pasalubong, The Henry is now also home to Red Kitchen, known for “Dumaguete’s finest quality homemade products,” such as boquerones, bihod, which they describe as “our Island caviar” and dulong.

Of course when you travel to Dumaguete, it would only make sense to also visit the nearby islands like Apo Island for diving, the Balinsasayao Twin Lakes Natural Park or the Casaroro Falls; or do a heritage and faith tour, visiting ancestral homes and the St. Catherine Alexandria Cathedral, the oldest stone church in Negros (St. Catherine’s feast, by the way, is on Nov. 25 so now is a good time to visit!).

The Henry, though, is so pretty and relaxing, I highly doubt you would even want to leave the grounds. You might end up with a staycation on vacation! Or, like Chef Keith Fresnido (formerly of Vask) and Marla de Asis Fresnido (formerly of Shang and Taal Vista), you may just fall in love with Dumaguete and stay forever. I probably would, too. It’s such a delicious destination, I would move there even just for the food!

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