My parents are back from their month-long stay in the Philippines. As usual, they brought back a bunch of things they had bought while in Manila and in Bicol. When they buy things, they always wrap it in Manila newspapers so it’s interesting to look at once the newspapers are unwrapped.
One of the newspapers had this insert that caught my eye. It was a housing development called “Georgia Club” based in Santa Rosa, Laguna province. What cracked me up were the descriptions for the housing development in which it was modeled after the “American South”!!
It’s like living in another world
In a more laid back setting, this 15-hectare prime residential property brings a feeling of life that is not cluttered with the otherwise fast-paced, technology-obsessed world today.
Instead, Georgia Club goes back to the basics, with nothing manmade except for its gorgeous, quaint houses that evokes classic American South.
At Georgia Club, we don’t just put attention to detail. We place it on charm. That’s why we have more than the usual state-of-the-art clubhouse, and swimming pool. We’ve added small touches like placing a mailbox in front of every Southern-style home, to remind you of the forgotten joy of reading a handwritten love letter. Open porches draw you into the seemingly unimportant pleasure of just watching the day dip into twilight. And while most things in the world have been diminished into what’s instant and fleeting, isn’t it wonderful that life can still be about the most lingering and gratifying of experiences? So take that leisurely drive to St. Rosa today and discover the kind of live that waits for you here.
LOL, wut? Whoever wrote this copy definitely did their research on the American South but honey, just cuz we live here in the South don’t mean we don’t are trying to get away from the real world! As someone who actually lives in the American South, I am amazed at how they are really trying to replicate the feel of the plantation homes/lifestyle/whatever you wanna call it minus the slaves.
I didn’t see this on the website but it’s printed on the newspaper insert I have:
10 exciting things to do in Georgia Club
Charm’s new address, Georgia Club, offers a variety of activities to do and to experience, promising a day of adventure or of relaxation – your choice – that makes the most ordinary days just a bit more special. Here’s a list of things to do in Georgia Club:
- Set-up a picnic at Daisy Park. Spend the afternoon lounging around this lovely garden, enjoying the time with friends and family. Kids can play in the playground while mom prepares the food and dad cooks the barbecue. [My take: mom nor dad would be cooking as filipinos hire maids to do that for them]
- Read a book at the porch. It’s a special feeling to have the time to sit in the porch with your feet up, reading your favorite book. The Madison, the biggest of all model houses in Georgia Club, features a wrap-around porch like no other. [My take: Filipinos reading books on the porch? Hardly! More like hang out at their porch, drinking beer or gossiping about the neighbors]
- Go for nature photography. Trees, flowers and birds around in Georgia Club making every shot perfect. Nothing beats spending time in nature and actually appreciating it. It wouldn’t hurt to take pictures of the architectural wonders, too. [My take: I guess you'd want shots of a manicured lawn or whatnot over the tropical landscape outside of the property]
- Spend time bird watching. The whole Georgia Club is a bird sanctuary–with over 20 species of endemic birds at any given time–so get your cameras ready to capture in photographs birds in their natural habitat flying with wild abandon. [My take: Good luck at catching a shot of those birds while construction bangs away next door over the new house]
- Walk the dog. You and your dog could be challenged with the vast space this 15 hectare prime residential property offers. It’s a good way to work a sweat and provides quality time with man’s best friend. [My take: I RARELY saw anyone walking their dog while I was in the Philippines, both living there and vacationing there. They typically don't treat their dogs well...chain them up and cage them.]
- Play basketball, volleyball or badminton. Georgia Club has convertible country where its residents can play basketball, volleyball or badminton. No video game can replace the real thing so it’s time to get back into sports. [My take: Be prepared for the guys that will play basketball from sun up to sun down. Our house in Naga is next door to the neighborhood basketball court (we also have a house in a residential development like this) and there are ALWAYS guys playing constantly and loudly!]
- Throw a party for friends and family. The club house is spacious enough to accommodate your friends for a birthday party or just a simple get-together. It’s the perfect opportune to exercise your social skills without having to log onto Facebook or Twitter. [My take: I'd love to see how well maintained they keep their club house after a year!]
- Check out the sun-dial. It’s not every day you see a larger than life sun-dial and Georgia Club has one at the Daisy Park. Here’s your chance to see if the time-telling device does give out and accurate reading or not. [My take: Who gives a fuck about a sun dial???? That's not a southern thing, that's an ANCIENT WORLD THING!]
- Fly a kite. The breeze in Georgia Club is your best friend, proving a cool atmosphere all day and night. Rekindle the kid in you and fly a kite. There are more than enough open spaces for this activity in this community. [My take: Not once did I see anyone flying a kite while in the Philippines! Better to fly them at the beach.]
- Know your neighbor. No man is an island. In Georgia club, this could not have been more true. The thriving community attracts individuals and families who’d be more than willing to be acquainted with their neighbors. A true community, indeed. [My take: Oh please! Both in province and in the city, you're gonna get to know your neighbors, regardless. So, this is nothing new.]
I just think it’s a little laughable at the way they try sooo hard to recreate a “lifestyle” as they think that is part of the US. My sister lives in Atlanta, GA and I’m sure she would be laughing her ass off at this so-called community for the rich in the Philippines.
While I was looking at the floor plans of the houses, I couldn’t help but chuckle at the thought of where they would set up their “dirty kitchen”, despite having the clean modern one inside.
I also couldn’t stop laughing at the whole mailbox idea. Our house in Naga doesn’t have one as the mail man just rings the bell to hand us the mail. Honestly, I’d prefer that over a mail box there. Having the mail box would invite people to open it and steal mail which I have no doubt would happen there. Here in the US, it’s rare that it happens. It’s a federal crime to tamper with the mail as if you are seen doing it, people will definitely report you to the cops.
The style of the houses, I can see the Southern influence in the windows and some interior things. If you look at the largest model house, Madison, they have a bedroom for the maid and driver. Heh, so typical. Filipinos can’t do their own housework or driving. Still stuck with that colonial mentality of hiring others do to things for them yet they want the american lifestyle but not the independence of doing things themselves. I know rich people here in Memphis who don’t have live-in maids nor drivers.
I think, if you’re a fil-am wanting to build/buy a home in the Philippines, you’re better off staying away from these types of residential developments. For one, you’re probably spending more than just building it yourself. My mom built our vacation house in Naga at the time the exchange rate was really high. 57pesos to US$1. Our house is so much bigger than these homes. We have 5 bedrooms, 3 1/2 baths but no garage. Don’t need as we don’t own a car there. Why bother when our relatives live close by and they have cars. Plus, we use jeepney, bus and vans to get around.
I would love to see a residential development in the Philippines that is DISTINCTLY filipino. Problem is, what is distinctly filipino?