Clingys in Baguio: The Diplomat Hotel Experience

Hello hello! Just got back from our Iloilo-Bacolod trip c/o 2GO Travel. Will post about that soon (have to sort and edit pics pa) but for now, more of our recent Baguio trip muna! Our Day 2 experience has got to be the most memorable one-- as in one for the books, as in can't stop talking about it til now levels. I've been to Baguio a couple of times but it's amazing how I, with the clingys (Ana, Tracy & Tin), was able to go to places we have never been. I think that's what I love most about our travel group (naks), we are so much alike yet different at the same time. We have different styles, different personalities, different interests that every journey we take, no matter how near or far, becomes brand new. We compromise and find ways on how to satisfy our always hungry stomachs (importante yan haha) and nomadic cravings. I love it. Will narrate through photos! But first, my outfit...

photos by Ana Gonzales
 Samuel & Kevin men's polo & shorts, Thrifted coat, SM Accessories bangle, I Dunna Shop transparent flats

The temperature in Baguio was just right, that I could wear shorts and a coat without freezing to death. Finally got to wear this Samuel & Kevin ensemble that I posted weeks ago on Instagram. Hihi. It's amazing how I always turn up wearing my signature "preppy" style. Haha. Loving my 2-toned transparent flats from I Dunna Shop which was surprisingly comfy. It was a nice break from wearing my overused Chuck Taylor. Hehe. We took these shots pala at Camp John Hay! Ganda noooh?

Construction outside. Is this a new hotel? Or a house maybe? Looks creepy. hehe. 

We took a cab from The Ruins to Diplomat Hotel. This old, abandoned hotel is located at the top of a hill (Dominican Hill), so it's best if you could ask the cab to wait for you if you plan to visit. We had no concrete plans or itinerary for this trip so almost all the places we went to was a spur of the moment decision. We had no plans of doing some ghost hunting, we just wanted to see where the indie film "Diplomat Hotel" starring Gretchen Barretto (haven't seen it yet) was filmed. We also wanted to take good photos and maybe take outfit photos. Which of course never happened. Scroll down to see why....

beautiful view. 

I'd be honest, we suddenly had second thoughts when we stepped inside the perimeter. The guard hesitating to disclose the history of the hotel when we asked was not very encouraging. Pamysterious pa si kuya eh may google naman. Haha. His explanation was very brief. The girls got scared but I got drawn by it's mystery and it's charm so I kept walking. Ana and I really wanted go in and explore the place bilang andun na din naman kami. Tracy and Tin wanted to stay outside but we were able to persuade them to step inside. 

Upon stepping inside, as in right when we walked through the doorway, we suddenly felt the air change. A cold wind welcomed us and it got 2 degrees colder. As in super weird coz the place was open so the temp outside and inside should be the same db? But hindeeeee. It was chillier inside talaga and it feels like you're in another place in another time. It scared them more tuloy. I, on the other hand, got drawn to this area inside which I called "secret garden". If you read my blog, you'd know how I love ruins. I was mesmerized talaga I couldn't stop taking photos. If pwede lang magoutfit photos dito gagawin ko but for some reason I felt that it wasn't right. 

A friend commented on my Instagram photo that when he visited last January, there were no plants at all. According to the caretaker, this area is where they often see & hear spirits of children playing.

It would have been more comforting if there were other tourists there, but no no no kami lang talaga. The caretaker was nice though. She chatted with us and asked us where we're from, when we told her we're from Manila she offered if we wanted to check out and take photos at the bell tower, meaning the rooftop. Of course, I said yes coz I didn't want to miss the chance to discover more of this enchanting place. Sayang din coz we're there na, todohin na db. The caretaker disclosed that they don't normally allow na visitors to go up. I think it's already a city ordinance to preserve the place after being badly vandalized.

 access to the rooftop. it's always locked

Ate caretaker #1 entered a room and discussed our plan to go up to Ate #2 behind closed doors. We had no idea what they talked about but I think we heard them arguing then whispering. After less than a minute Ate#1 emerged from the room with the key and told us to give pang meryenda nalang. She also told us, "If may naramdaman kayo magdikit dikit nalang kayo ha". This freaked Tracy and Tin out so they immediately got out of the building. Ana and I still went for it and paid P50, we felt that we would miss something if we chickened out. So kahit we were both secretly nervous & afraid, we had to compose ourselves, act calm, then went for it. 

Naka 4 steps na kami paakyat when ate said, "I'll lock lang yung door, katok nalang kayo if lalabas na kayo". OMG I swear we panicked and went down to argue with her. I asked her to come with us nalang kesa ilock the door. Napraning talaga kami ni Ana. Numerous horror story plots suddenly crossed my mind. Kasi naman ate eh! Finally, she said she'll close lang the door and not lock. So go na kami. 

The stairs stopped when we reached the 2nd floor. So Ana and I got disoriented and confused coz we thought tuloy tuloy lang sha paakyat sa bell tower. We walked and tried searching for the next flight of stairs going to the rooftop. At this point, my heart was racing na and I literally felt the hairs on my nape, my back, lahat na stand. Goosebumps to the nth level. Ana and I still tried to act calm so we could get through it. Chill lang ganun. The stairs were at the other side of the building so we had to cross pa. Longest 20+ steps of my life! I had my phone and camera with me but for some reason I couldn't get myself to take photos of the rooms or walls or anything on this floor. Ana felt the same thing din pala. We were consistently saying, "Tabi tabi po, makikidaan lang po, sorry po" all throughout. I have never seen ghosts (except this one time when I was a kid) or seldom get scared, but that time we felt like we were being watched, like we were on hostile grounds, so we had to tread very lightly.

The rooftop or bell tower was beautiful. The view was breathtaking. You could see Baguio from up there. It was super hot so fast lang our picture taking.

this was where a nun jumped to her death daw according to the caretaker

Demure pose lang coz this cross is the bida. It has been here since the building was first erected.

secret garden from the top

shadow play

I asked Ana to take an artsy photo of me in the hallway. She asked me to move forward nalang coz it's their territory and it might be disrespectful. I did naman but when I got to Manila my SD card got broken and that particular photo got corrupted. Weird.

So we went down na and met with Tracy & Tin outside who googled na pala the history of the place. 

So here's a quick summary: It was first a church built by the Dominican friars during the 1900's. It then got abandoned because of the war. In 1911, the Dominicans decided to convert it into a rest house for the terminally ill patients. Then came World War II and the place became a refugee camp. The Japanese bombed the place and a lot of priests and nuns were beheaded here and murdered. 

After the war, Dominican Hill was reconstructed and the property was bought by the Diplomat Hotel Inc. They turned it into a 33 bedroom hotel but it ceased operations 1987 when the hotel's manager Tony Agpaoa, a faith healer, died. It was also said that guests couldn't stay in the hotel because of numerous paranormal activities happening. 

We had a quick chat with Ate the caretaker before leaving. She said she's now used to the Diplomat ghosts. She'd often hear children play, women and men's screams and howls, footsteps, loud bangings. It mostly happens daw 6pm onwards especially when it's foggy. So alam niyo na when hindi pupunta! Noted with thanks! Haha. 

So left na, I suddenly had a bad headache and I felt super tired. I thought maybe it was because we slept late or because there was no shade and mainit. I heard Ana tell Tracy na her head hurts too. I ignored it lang then we rode a cab who was on standby. Buti nalang may cab agad! Anyway, the whole ride to Camp John Hay I was silent. I felt weird, woozy and sleepy. There was a time I thought, "Hala mapossess kaya ako?". As in out of the blue. I sat sa front so I didn't know na Ana was feeling the same thing na pala. When we reached Camp John Hay we went to 7-11 first coz I felt thirsty. Ana went to the drinks section din and bought Gatorade, while I bought ion water. When were outside na that's when we talked and exchanged stories. Turned out we were feeling the exact same things! We both had a headache, we felt tired, and both our visions became hazy yung feeling pag mahihimatay ka. Ganun. I told her na baka the spirits fed off from our energy. I still had goosebumps kahit dun and bilang 5 pcs lang my hair kitang kita talaga haha. So sa gitna ng road Tracy stopped us, asked us to form a circle, hold hands and we prayed. A few minutes after that we felt okay again. 

The next day, Tracy took a cab to Andi Manzano's wedding and chatted with the driver about the old hotel. The driver said it's haunted and residents who live near the area often hear sounds coming from the place. When Tracy said 2 of her friends went up the Bell Tower, the driver's response sent chills to our spines. He said, "Umakyat sila sa 2nd floor? Kaya walang umaakyat dun kasi madami napopossess. Antapang nila and swerte sila". OMG talaga. That moment I thought our faith in God and ourselves saved us. Maybe. :) So please ingat sa mga pupunta. Take caution lang.

We have different beliefs and some of you might discard lang our story. But you know the world is full of mysteries and it's too big to think we are the only ones occupying this vast space. Diplomat hotel is so beautiful but I wouldn't mind not stepping in there again. Haha. Toodles!:)


  1. dude sure ka di ka na posses? hahaha

  2. Reading this post made me really scared even though there is really no detailed horror story. T_T You were really brave talaga!

  3. Wow grabe this was one of the most intriguing posts I've read so far. Parang Nancy Drew lang ah. Grabe ang tatapang nyo! hehe. I wondered if I would have the guts to do what you guys did. Probably yeah pero nakaka freak out yung time na gusto ng ate na ilock yung door paakyat 2nd floor! haha. adventure kung adventure. the site is pretty though. glad to hear you all ended up ok. :)

  4. omg! Diplomat Hotel is both enchanting yet so mysterious and well, creepy! so glad, nothing more than that happened to you and Ms Ana.

    czarina :)

  5. no wonder it's one for the books talaga!kalurky!Thank God you're all fine.c:

  6. I love the outfit here, it's great for a stroll.


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