Kilyawan Farm Resort

Ibaan, Batangas


Building Two - Reception Building

1. Front verandah and Main entrance


2.  Front verandah and Main entrance


3.  Front verandah and Main entrance


4.  Courtyard and Al Fresco Dining Area


5.  Reception Lobby


6.  Reception Lobby


7.  Restaurant


8.  Restaurant


9.  Restaurant


10.  Corridor to Pool Verandah


11.  Pool Verandah as seen from Pool

Building One - Residential Cabins


12.  Cabin 1


13.  Typical Cabin

14. Exterior facade of sleeping area of typical cabin


15. Entrance stairs and courtyard of typical cabin

16.  Entrance verandah of typical cabin

17.    Sleeping area of typical cabin

18.    Sleeping area of typical cabin


19.    Sleeping area of typical cabin

20.    Sleeping area of typical cabin, looking towards courtyard

Kilyawan is the local name for the black-naped oriole that finds sanctuary in this 8.5-hectare farm resort in the provincial town of Ibaan, Batangas, the Philippines.


The two buildings that anchor the resort form part of a series of eight poultry buildings of a former agro-industrial complex that once housed 55,000 egg-laying chickens.  The owners have retired from the egg industry, but continue to grow bamboo, narra, and fruit bearing trees, while chickens now roam freely in the poultry section of the farm.


The pandemic gave impetus to a long-held dream, to give city people an escape to the authenticity of the farm. 


The architecture of the two buildings roots itself in the authenticity of place and the materials obtainable from the site.  The client wanted to preserve the memory of the old chicken farm, and to use materials that “come from here.” These guidelines formed the seed of the design.


The 690 sqm Cabins Building and the 580 sqm Reception Building use the original footprints and column footing locations of the chicken coops that stood on the site, as well as the triangular steel trusses that had served as columns and roof beams.  The trusses are partially clad with bamboo sections. 


Courtyards separate the individual cabins of the Cabins Building.  Cabin walls are made of bamboo and recycled wood, aerated with tall jalousie windows on three sides.  A masonry module, housing bathroom and dressing areas, anchors each cabin.  The building blocks are composed of cement and recycled plastic trash. 


The Reception Building uses bamboo, recycled narra wood, and handmade clay bricks from the nearby town of San Juan.  The brick is arranged in a pattern resembling weaving.


In both buildings, the roof follows the original profile, with the central skylight extending down the central spine from start to finish.  The floor level of the Reception Building follows the natural level changes from lobby entrance to the pool at the back.  In contrast, the floor of the Cabins Building stays level from beginning to end, resting on piers over the sloping ground below.


Ceilings are lined with woven mats made by a community of women weavers that live on an island off the coast of Batangas.  The bedroom ceilings are of the finer-scaled buri palm leaf while the eaves are of the broader amakan split bamboo that is also used throughout the Reception Building ceiling.  


The central skylight of the Reception Building links the lobby, function halls and restaurant along a broad ceremonial passage that directs one to the swimming pool at the end of the axis.


The white metal roof, the thick masonry walls, the generous cross-ventilation, and the porosity of selected materials help keep both buildings naturally cool.


Images of the resort that were shared on social media went viral, indicating that the project’s quest for authenticity is shared by many.  Today, this unique resort is a popular destination, made memorable by the clucking of the free-roaming chickens harmonizing with the sweet warbling of the kilyawan.