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Caleruega Church, Nasugbu, Batangas

Finally! Romantics and soul searchers this one's for you! A candidate for the most favored wedding destination in the Philippines or simply one of the most sought-out pre-nuptial shoot location because of its refreshing beauty of commingled influences in Architecture. This multi-function complex also serves as a sanctuary for families and friends. Although it takes a bit of effort to reach its best kept secret at the top, it's all well worth the hike!

I know, this is not located anywhere in Tagaytay, but it pretty much is along the boundary between Tagaytay and Batangas and is in proximity to most of the places I've shown you in the previous series



Anyways, this is probably the best, if not one of the best religious complex in the Philippines. Why? Let me share with you the whole experience, but first, bits of TQT facts :)

Caleruega is actually a small town in Spain where St. Dominic De Guzman, the founder of Dominican Order was born. Obviously, it has a Spanish origin, but it also flourished in different parts of the world, including the Philippines.


Going through media sites relating to this amazing complex, as much as I would like to believe that this is a replica of a Church in Caleruega, Spain, I would firmly suggest otherwise (tell you more about it at the latter part of this post). 


This is the first structure you'll see as you enter the complex. With hints of Spanish Renaissance, the Administration Building bears the name of its original inspiration "Caleruega". Adorned with mosaic and sculpted figures in its facade, it subtly hides behind lush green beauty of nature.
As we set foot inside, more Spanish treatment pleasurably satisfied my inner Architect from the lighting fixtures, to the beautiful balustrade, down to the floor treatment. It truly is such an experience.
After a satisfying interior viewing, we now head outside to savor opulent fresh air. These times, it almost is impossible not to breathe in polluted air in the city, so it really is such a relief to be here, where the abundance of trees and its benefits are free.
Walking further, we stumbled upon this impressively improvised water fountain made of bamboo and concrete/clay basins right beside the Caleruega Cafe, there's. And a phrase on my left that I mostly agree with "Closer to nature, Closer to God. Behind me is the sanctuary for plants and butterflies.
This next feature I'm very fond of: The Hanging Bridge. I could just lie there all day appreciating the trees and the sky with the cold humid accompanied with fresh air. The simple things in life at its best. Of course I'd have to get my selfie self in the photo ^_^
Another selfie, hahaha! forgive me! :)
Sitting by this man-made cascading pond gave us the ultimate tranquil moment. We were extremely relaxed just sitting by the bridges and chat about anything and everything. Life's a blessing. 
At the Dominicum Corridor...click click! I'm super enjoying this, my poor boyfriend's job for today was to take photos of me in this beautiful haven. I couldn't get enough evidence that I was here! LOL
Evaluating the Hall... :)
This is the Veritas and Catalina Hall, where all the gatherings and celebrations take place. Spaciously and functionally designed, it overlooks a colorful and vibrant world outside. 
The "Tuktok" (topmost in English) acts as a snack bar for tourists/pilgrims. It is here where tourists take some rest here after hiking the first part of the complex or used as a shelter when rain pours. The male and female toilets are also located here. 
Pretty original: these bamboo chandeliers may go unnoticed to most, but I'm always into detail so I'm giving credits for these innovative ideas. Kudos to the designers for making this place efficient and less harmful to the environment all at the same time.
More about the Church's Architecture... 


As mentioned above, I would like to defy all the other written documentations regarding the origin of the Church that said "it is a replica of a Church in Spain"

Here's my theory: Yes, it does have semi-circular stilted arches, flying buttresses, circular opening in front and bricks everywhere, but it doesn't mean that it automatically belong to Gothic Architecture or even Medieval Architecture because of its rustic facade.
By merely looking at the facade, I'd say that (1) the proportions of a Gothic Church is dissimilar to this example, clearly. (2) A typical Gothic Church has spires on both sides while this one is designed with two rectangular medieval parts of the structure. 
(3) The circular opening bears a glass mosaic of a chalice-like symbol (probably one of the seals/symbols of the Dominican Order), and should have been at least a simple rose window to prove its gothic authenticity. And Gothic design holds a lot of the most ornately designed  structures ever in the world history of Architecture, and this one is nothing but simple, but nevertheless romantic :)
Therefore, it is safe to say that Caleruega Church in Nasugbu Batangas is home of some of the Dominican Fathers and Brothers in the Philippines. They honor Caleruega as the hometown of their founding Father, St. Dominic De Guzman and this complex serves merely to spread the good news and nurture more the Dominican Order, and, gives refuge and hope to all believers in an incomparable haven.
another portrait :)

Do you agree with me? Share your thoughts on the comment box below. I'd like to know more about this place and so do the future people who will visit Caleruega.

Thank you for reading my blog once again. This is my last installment for Tagaytay Blog Series 2013. I hope you enjoyed a jam packed day with me, and maybe learn a thing or two.

Much love,

Mel

10 comments:

  1. Ive been here 2 years ago. I fell in love with the place. If only i knew that our college retreat was being held here, I would probably join that every year lol. The place is like heaven to tired souls of the metro people. One can rest with the cold air and 'real' smell of fresh surroundings...

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  2. nice blog. would love to visit this church in Batangas. thanks

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  3. Thank you guys! Yeah, it is a place I'll admire forever :)

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  4. The church's architecture is more like Neo-Romanesque

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    1. Hi and thank you for your insight. I looked up "Neo-Romanesque" buildings in google. Apparently I'd have to disagree with you on that. The common neo-romanesque churches show the significance of spiked higher towers. Caleruega Church's mid structure is higher than both it's supposedly towers. Looking forward for more clarifications though :)

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  5. hi! Is okay for me to feature the picture of the Careluega Church for an article?

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    Replies
    1. Hi. For what article is this? Thru blog?

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    2. Hi. For what article is this? Thru blog?

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  6. is it free for all visitors? i mean is there any admission fee?

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  7. Ate how to commute po from tagaytay to here?

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