The Lourdes Villa was the retirement home of a former diplomat. It holds some of the treasures that he brought home with him– from Africa, from Asia. A former graduate of Los Baños Agriculture, he chose each plant and flower that blooms in the garden. The only reason that he had decided, upon the prodding of his wife, to open the house to the public, was because he decided to serve the people, and could no longer go to Baguio as frequently as he used to. But he still comes to make sure the garden is well kept, and everything in the house is as if he were still living there.
The Lourdes Villa is perfect since it is just a jeepney ride away from the Maharlika Market and Burnham Park. It is in the area of the Grotto, as you come in from the main road.
It is easy to spot the Lourdes Villa as one goes down the Queen of Peace Road from the main road going to the Grotto. It looks massive against the hill. You can see the hanging plants that grace the windows. The paint of the house is chocolate brown, with a belt of light pink.
As soon as you enter the driveway, past the massive gate that needs two people to open it, you will know that you have been transported to another place and time. There are vines of passion flowers in vivid red color that cover the wall, the kavite that supports the house. Two vans can park comfortably in the driveway.
The Princess Room is the favorite room for many lovers. It is a four-poster bed that came from France via Vietnam. A Swiss diplomat sold it grudgingly to the Filipino owner of the Lourdes Villa after he found out that he had exceeded his baggage allotment! So this French four-poster bed has found its final home in Baguio. Many pictures of its guests in the bed have been taken as their souvenir of time well spent at the Villa.
For people who do not want to share beds, the Family Room is for them. There are two double beds in the room. The toilet is also ensuite. Although the management does not encourage parents to bring their small children because of the many breakable items they have in the house, the Family Room is also good for people who want to bond with their children while they are on vacation.
During lunch time, you can opt to eat out in the garden and enjoy the jade flowers falling under the canopy of the vines. You can ask Jose, the gardener, to put out the monoblocs from Africa and feel you are in a mountain resort, surrounded with all that greenery.
This is the view of the garden at the back. There are giant fern trees that shade you from the direct sunlight. They are also very beautiful to behold. The garden goes all the way to the top and you can view the whole Baguio city from the top. There is a place where you can sit under the tunbergia vines and meditate on how wonderful God is to have all these different plants around you.
There are vines that cover the ground on each level. And Morning Glory vines at the edges of the fence on both sides of the house. They are so unusual! So delicate! They came from Minnesota, a souvenir of the time when Daughter Regina got married to her long-time beau and classmate. There are the bright red passion flowers against the wall of the driveway.
Someone noted that the Garden of the Lourdes Villa has more variety of flowers than any park in the city.