Don't you feel how fast this year is passing by? It's like the past few days are placed with a fast forward button. Sometimes, our lives can get so busy and we can get so caught up in our day to day plans, that we forget to slow down and appreciate the simple things in life. A few days ago, I had the chance to do exactly just that. Luckily, I had a one day break from my hectic college schedule and we decided to go out of town. Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar was not planned at all but going home from our trip, we saw the sign and we decided to pass by, since we've never seen it before. 
(this is not a sponsored post, I just wanted to share its beauty because I think it needs to be more recognized)

The sun in my dad's eyes - Road trips are so much better with good music so always have a
 playlist ready. I love listening to house music or the latest songs in the charts so 
I can sing along (and belt my heart out) while cruising on the road.

As soon as you arrive, you will be greeted with a huge lobby and you get this kind of view.
 From there, a day tour is available wherein you get to tour the whole area and find out more 
about the history of the houses that were placed and transferred in the site. 

I liked seeing art works hanging in their lobby. I loved the contrast of the old ambiance 
with the new and modern take on Old Manila. I loved how the colors were subdued, 
which blended well with its background. The style of this painting really appealed to me. 

There I was - gleaming with joy since I was excited to find more about the place. 
Ever since I was young, I had always been fascinated with history. 
I loved learning new things from other's experiences. 

This was where the first tour was going to start. 
It was surrounded by bricked walls, old bikes & lots of trees!

I personally have a thing for doors and brick walls. 
When taking pictures (especially for Instagram puporses), make sure
 that you are aware of the proportions and the symmetries so that you get a good shot. 

Ah, the classic Filipino delicacies! These are honestly my comfort food 
no matter how carb-y they can get!

The structure behind me is the main hotel of Las Casas. From what I heard, this is the only one
 that they had to reconstruct from the start since it got burned down before.  

So, the tour begins and I really liked how the houses were placed together, 
just like in a 'village' -placed inside what they would call a 'plaza' in the Spanish Era. 

Some of the houses were also restaurants inside - complete with antique furnitures.

Each house here had its own history and most of these houses were placed here from
 different parts of the Philippines. Imagine exactly transferring a house piece by piece, 
wood by wood... and well you get it. (yes, the whole structure itself!) 
Also, some houses had reenacted some of the events that happened before.

These pink flowers called Bougainvilleas were seen everywhere 
and I think that it added to the aesthetic of the place. 
These flowers, especially in a bunch, always look so pretty in pictures.
 I think that it's the Philippines' version of Japan's cherry blossoms. 
(except that it's here all year round)

This was, according to the tour guide, the most controversial house among all houses.
 I guess that's because of the way they designed their columns. 
But, looking at this at an artistic sense, I loved this idea...
Instead of just placing ordinary pillars, the owners decided to make it a sculpture. 
Nice touch!

While I was going around, I couldn't help but wonder what it was like to live in the Spanish Era, 
wear those heavy gowns with hundreds of layers, and basically act like the typical Maria Clara.
It would be interesting to live a day that way. 

Another thing I like the most are pretty floors with designs! 
This gives another point of view, somewhat like a 'from where I stand' type of shot. 
Shoutout to the comfiest flats I have now.

I guess by now you see that I love intricate designs and small details. 

This was what the typical dining room looked like before. More details, details, details! 

Another point of view from the river area - el barco y la iglesia (the boat and the church)

Meet Kathleen. She was our tour guide throughout the day and I was amazed 
at how well she mastered and memorized all the stories of each house. 
She spoke both inEnglish and in Filipino to accommodate the foreigners
 that were on tour with us. She was super funny too! 

We were about to end the tour and I was able to catch a glimpse of this view from one of the windows. 

I went home with a smile on my face and a grateful heart.
 I was able to learn new things, and bring with me new memories after witnessing 
a beautiful place filled with a colorful history. 

It's really good to go back to your roots once in a while, and realize that without all of those things that happened, we wouldn't have what we have now. There is something about looking back that humbles me as a person - it makes me realize that the past is necessary in order for us to move on and it will always be part of who we are but we are also not defined by it. Even though there were hardships that we faced in life, know that there's always sunshine after the rain. Everything will always be okay, in the end.

'Til my next post! 
xx, Denise