Whilst traditionally a fiesta in the Philippines is held to celebrate different patron saints, you would be forgiven if you simply thought it was the local town or cities excuse to have a party since that is in actual fact what happens. It is a once a year opportunity for the locals to show their generosity to others with an open house invite to celebrate and mainly to eat lots of food. In the build up to the fiesta many towns host ‘discos’ in the resident basketball court with music so loud your ears will be left ringing. The markets get crazy busy with the buying and selling of pigs which seems to increase tenfold as families seek to put a whole roasted lechon (roasted pig) on their table as the pièce de résistance. Families are also busily preparing a vast array of Filipino cuisine to offer their guests; a feast for any meat lover with every variation of pork imaginable and if you have a sweet tooth, the buko salad and sticky rice is a delight.
Yet the most amazing and seemingly strange part of the whole experience is that you will be invited to more than one person’s house to celebrate their fiesta with them and it is not considered impolite to eat your plate of food, thank the host and move on to the next house.
Whatever time of year it is there is sure to be a fiesta going on somewhere and with the homes of our staff stretching 25km in either direction along the coast line and with many towns and small villages in between, it seems fiestas come about monthly. You do not need to know exactly when the fiestas are as you will certainly feel the energy and the excitement of both the hosts as they begin their preparations and the guests at knowing what kind of lunch is waiting to be had.
/Rae, Wellness Manager at Atmosphere