Drive and dine with dad

Mequeni Live restaurant of Quest Plus Clark

Father’s Day may be over, but that doesn’t mean we can’t spend special bonding moments with dad.

Apart from the typical dine out treat, a unique family getaway is blend driving—motor to a destination and swing on the golf course—to make everyday special.

Driving on the road and the greens are precious moments to bond with children and initiate them to these two vital life skills they will surely find useful. Below are family-friendly golf destinations where you can drive and dine even beyond Dad’s Day.

Intramuros. Club Intramuros Golf Club is an ideal entry point to the sport with its unintimidating ambiance, reasonable green fees, and friendly atmosphere. As a government-run property, there is no need for a sponsor or referral in order to play.

Managed by the Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority (TIEZA), it takes pride in its panoramic driving range, an 18-hole fairway with the historic Walled City as a one-of-a-kind background, and a night golfing capability with its bright lights.

Club Intramuros Golf Club

After your foray into golf, enjoy a family feast in the must-try restaurants—Barbara’s Restaurant which is known for buffet heritage cuisine and dinner shows, Le Mitre for its ecclesiastical motif, Ilustrado for its colonial ambiance, and Bayleaf Hotel for its contemporary feel. The only hotel in the historical district, it has a stunning vista of the fairways and fortresses, and becomes more soothing at night.

Intramuros also offers an inexpensive recreation through museum-hopping, calesa ride or lazy walk at the cobblestone roads, ramparts, and myriad of spots which take you back in time.

Must-sees are the old-time favorites Fort Santiago, which has a mesmerizing view of the Manila Bay sunset and the new Intramuros-Binondo Bridge, and Casa Manila which recreates Spanish-era middle-class living.

Alabang. In southern metro, the 285-yard Southpoint Driving Range, which has a relaxing view of blue skies and green grass can bring out your championship form. Situated at the Filinvest City, it has 28 covered bases with turf mats and an equipment shop which rents golfing gear.

Come chow time, the commercial district has an infinity of options: Commercenter boutique mall, Festival Mall, Crimson Hotel which has several dining outlets, and Vivere Suites which has a 31st-story roofdeck with a panoramic view of the Laguna Lake and the Sierra Madre mountains.

Sporty families can pedal at the extensive network of bike lanes and 9-km Filinvest Mountain Bike Trail, the first of its kind in the metropolis, or simply stroll around the tree-canopied artsy parks.

Southpoint Driving Range

Clark. If it is an actual drive you’re looking for, head out to Clark Freeport Zone in Pampanga for a seamless out-of-town foray to this leisure enclave.

You can play at the Nelson and Haworth-designed newly renovated 18-hole Mountainview Course of Mimosa Plus Golf Course which reopened last year. Tech-savvy golfers can book online via the Mimosa Plus Golf app, and ride a GPS-enabled golf cart with Visage system which enables you to monitor your game.

Also within the former US air base is Clark Sun Valley Golf and Country Club which has two par 72, 18-hole courses—the 7,127-yard Clark or Dongwon Course and the 7,015-yard Sun Valley. Because of its valley terrain, the slopes and elevations are evident on both courses, punctuated with thick bushes and ravines to create a thrilling game.
 
As the country’s acknowledged culinary capital, Pampanga is a foodie’s haven where you’ll discover that there’s so much food, but so little time.

Clark is a virtual food republic with a plethora of luxury hotels with a vaunted cuisine—Quest Plus which takes pride in its Kapampangan-themed Mequeni Live, Hilton Clark Sun Valley Resort, and Hann Casino Resort which has the Marriott and Swissotel hotels and several restaurants under its roof.

There are also a number of stand-alone restaurants away from the crowd for a more private family meal. Just outside Clark’s gates in Angeles City are home-grown restos which have tickled local palate with their own renditions of the sought-after sisig and halo-halo, among others.