Camiña Balay nga Bato is located in the area of Villa Arevalo,
you are greeted with a loom at the first floor where the souvenir shop and offices are, as an homage to their past when women used to weave while their men were working at the sugarcane plantations
the most expensive thing on sale at Lola Rufina's curio shop is this P1M Steinway
you can purchase your own TSOKOLATE EXPERIENCE SET - tablea, batirol and tsokolatera (big jug costs P1,300)
or just buy their tablea (P150/ea)
the oratorio (prayer room) at the second floor
with images like that, no wonder they were a prayerful lot back then
one good thing about Camiña is that all the things there were things used by the family, unlike the ones at Balay Negrense and Jalandoni House
such embossed steel ceilings were a status symbol during olden times
this sure brought back memories of olden days when we used such lamps... and how ornate is that woodwork, huh?
my most favorite antique in the house
serving tables chopped from massive trunks and fancy china to serve food in
yes, the teacups are real tiny, but you can ask for seconds so don't worry :)
you have the option to sprinkle some pinipig (crisped rice) on your tsokolate e
it was really such a dreamy experience... and though I delighted in sharing it with my sons, I think adults would appreciate it more because of the ambiance
Camiña Balay nga Bato was opened to the sick by a priest in the family in Spanish times (I am sorry I have quite forgotten the story of this Avanceña ancestral house. Weavers in the Arevalo district also used to work here. I have some complaint though... since the house is still being used as a house by the family when they visit (most are already based abroad), there were things that ruined the mood of the heritage pieces at the second floor: Like a mighty big flat screen TV in the middle of all those antiques. And maybe because the house has become the family's repository for their heirloom pieces, it was too crowded in the showcase area, in the sense that the items were competing for attention, rather than just highlighting the glory of that time. I think they should revisit the flow and organization of those well-loved trinkets from 1865 onwards.
They require a minimum of 5 visitors for the tsokolate experience and advance notice, of course, as they only have two dining tables.
Going to Camiña Balay nga Bato is easy from One Lourdes Dormitel because you can just ride a "Villa" jeep and get off at the Junction and walk towards the house. You can also ride a taxi (which we did, paid P70 I think). So, if you're looking for what to do in iloilo or where to go, just call them to reserve your tour at