Lagen Island hides on a four-hectare property on an island enveloped by towering limestone walls, lush forests, and a serene shallow lagoon that gracefully merges with the waters of Bacuit Bay teeming with underwater gems.
It is one of the properties of El Nido Resorts, which also includes the ones on Pangulasian, Apulit, and Miniloc Islands. Like its sister properties, Lagen Island serves as a sanctuary for a wide range of bird and mammal species.
Lagen Island offers a variety of accommodations with a total of 51 rooms. These rooms are divided into four classifications: stilt-styled water cottages, beachfront rooms, forest suites, and forest rooms. Each accommodation space incorporates timber recycled from old Filipino homes, creating an ambiance that conjures the quaint luxury found in the countryside and islands.
Simply staying in, enjoying the food, and swimming, even in the rain, would already make for a delightful time. But what made our recent stay here particularly special is that we were to battle it out for the title of Epson Fusion 14’s overall champion.
Let the Fusion 14 games begin
For over a decade, Epson, a global leader in innovative and sustainable technology solutions, has been organizing an annual thanksgiving gathering with members of the media—particularly those in the tech beat. This year, Lagen Island is the site of the 14th season of the brand’s Fusion event.
This year’s three-day happening, much like past Fusion episodes, was packed with fun challenges, good camaraderie, and exciting updates about Epson’s plans for the upcoming months. Attendees were treated to insights into new product rollouts and innovative developments that Epson has in store.
Due to the inclement weather, the initial plan to participate in outdoor activities like snorkeling in the Secret Lagoon—one of El Nido’s best island-hopping sites, had to be shelved. However, the game marshals did an excellent job of devising a new set of challenges that tested not only our mental and physical abilities but also our balance, creativity, focus, and knowledge about Epson products.
The initial task involved a quiz battle, where teams competed to be the first to answer three questions correctly about Epson products. The team that succeeded in doing so would then move on to the next challenge. The total time taken by each team for each task is added together to determine the overall winner.
Overall, there are five challenges, with the most grueling being the bamboo stilt race. The other challenges include a group balancing act, a creative group shot in the swimming pool, a cheer dance, and an activity that tests participants’ photographic memory. In this exercise, participants must mimic a set of characters and print them in the same order and size using an Epson miniature printer.
At the end of the Epson Fusion 14 team competitions, Team Pating emerged as the overall champion, surpassing the other teams – Pawikan, Dugong, Butanding, and Barakuda. They were awarded a prize on our last night during the socials: Under The Sea Cocktail Night.
Lagen Island, a winning choice
Much like the readers of Conde Nast Traveler who voted the El Nido Resorts in Lagen, Apulit and Pangulasian as its 2020 Readers Choice for Best Resorts in Asia, the team at Epson already won when they selected Lagen Island Resort as the location for this year’s Fusion Event. Lagen Island proved to be an ideal setting for team building activities. The island resort offers a plethora of opportunities for outdoor undertakings such as swimming, snorkeling, kayaking, birdwatching, and mangrove exploration.
The property includes designated areas for beach volleyball, badminton, soccer, and frisbee. Additionally, they offer an indoor playroom that provides various recreational activities such as table soccer, ping pong, billiards, and board games.
Despite the resort’s already sophisticated appearance, there are even more exciting things to come. Starting this month, the property will temporarily close for renovations. These improvements will focus on enhancing the amenities and designs of each room, promising a more laidback, satisfying, and better experience for guests.
“The management wants to make sure we remain a step or two ahead of the growing competitions in El Nido,” one of the staff told me. “In the meantime, we will be assigned for duties to the other El Nido Resort properties in either Apulit or Miniloc,” she adds.
Already a premier choice for bespoke holidays, one would be even more excited to return to a renovated Lagen Island in the near future. Guests can look forward to experiencing its exceptional hospitality and enjoying its specially curated services once again. These include indulging in the delicious cuisine served at its in-house restaurant and a soothing self-pampering by availing a Filipino-influenced hilot therapy offered at its spa. It is safe to assume that Lagen Island will become an even more popular choice for a quintessential Palawan hideaway once it reopens.
More than fun and games
The three-day Epson Fusion 14 event was not just about fun and games. It also provided us with an opportunity to learn what Epson has planned for the upcoming months. Additionally, we had the chance to bond with some of the senior executives who traveled with us to El Nido.
During our first night dinner, we had the pleasure of meeting several distinguished senior executives from Epson Philippines. These included Eduardo Bonoan, the marketing division head who will be retiring this year; Noelle Gonzalez, the senior manager of the vertical business department who will assume Bonoan’s role; Renan Lacson, the senior manager for product management; and Masako Kusama, the president of Epson Philippines.
After three days of delightful company, delectable food, and immersing myself in the charming atmosphere of Lagen Island Resort, I can confidently say that the Epson Fusion event I attended was just as remarkable as Epson’s ongoing success in the Philippine market. Can’t wait for the next Epson Fusion—and crossing fingers my editor sends me again.
Image credits: Marky Ramone Go