We spotted the ocean
Palm dreams: Equipped with our Regatta accessories and Fujifilm instax, we made the most of exploring Sorsogon, including the little coasts of Matnog island.
We spotted the ocean
Jam Pascual (The Philippine Star) - April 27, 2018 - 12:00am

Regatta’s new summer collection will make you wanna go full nautical.

MANILA, Philippines — Before the advent of tie-dye pants and the resurrection of your dad’s oversized tiki shirts, there was a certain kind of summer look that dominated every shore it set foot upon. It was collared shirts with the buttons all the way down, chambray dresses, board shorts that could rival your slickest khaki chinos. It was preppy. An easygoing kind of posh. You could rock it on the beach and on a yacht.

It’s a classic nautical look, and no other brand nails it quite like Regatta. The UK brand, which has been keeping it real since 1981, just released their new summer collection for 2018. The new line steps it up with the usual Regatta pieces — graphic tees and pique polos, to name a couple — and other summer staples like drawstring shorts, summer dresses, and swimsuits designed to flaunt any body of any shape or size that brings itself to the summer seaside. Most of the top looks in the line, as expected of Regatta, sport the signature two-oar insignia on the chest.

The new line also goes hand-in-hand with the brand’s annual #RegattaXperience campaign, which is all about adventure, stories and memories we gain when we visit new places and kick it with kindred traveling spirits. To demonstrate the freshness of the collection, Regatta helped us pull out some pieces from their new collection. They also brought us all the way to Sorsogon, a highly underrated eco-tourism spot that has more to boast than just whale sharks — but we’ll get to that in a bit.

To level up our trip, Regatta also partnered with Fujifilm, which lent us all Instaxes. The specific model I used was the Square SQ10, an Instax that works kind of like a digital cam, allowing you to choose filters and even save your snaps before printing them out.

We started off our three-day nautical foray by touching base at Siama Hotel, a boutique hotel with a beautiful swimming pool, the whole thing tranquilly set up at an altitude higher than most of the island. With that as our home base, we could freely explore the rest of the island, kicking off our Day 1 itinerary with a cruise down Buhatan river. What makes the river a sight to behold isn’t just the way it turns violet at sunset, but the river’s fireflies, which glow in the trees and react to sound. You can literally clap for them and get a free light show.

Day 2 saw us take a tour through Matnog island, and this is the part where I stress the “adventure” aspect of the #RegattaXperience campaign. Matnog island actually has a bunch of secret caves that lead to beautiful sunlit shores and coves. If you’ve seen the Studio Ghibli film Porco Rosso, the one set in the Adriatic Sea, the way the light hits the seaweed-covered rocks and strong waves ease into gentle lapping waters was kind of like that. We ended that day with surfing lessons at Gubat beach, wiping out on beginner-level waves and watching the sky grow dark on the foaming water. We got a lot of good Instax shots there, trying to catch the light when the surf wasn’t catching our bodies.

Ticket to ride: Regatta readied for us our own little "passport" and itinerary to make our Sorsogon stay an extra classy affair.

For the grand finale of our trip, you know we had to peep the whale sharks at Donsol. First, you travel out to open sea; then a boatman sits at the top of the mast, scanning the expanse for a fin breaking the surface, or a titanic silhouette moving underneath the blue roll. Once we get the signal that a whale shark is about to come our way, we drop in with our snorkels, search, then marvel.

A special shout-out must be made to the food we had at Sorsogon. If you’re going to the Bicol region, where the coconuts are just something else, you can have gata everything and come out of there happy.

Save for the times we were wearing life vests (and I was getting my backside handed to me by the sea while learning to surf), Regatta proved to be the best threads when it came to exploring the place. Comfort defines each piece as much as style, and even under the sun we were feeling fresh and breezy the whole time. It should also be noted that a good Regatta collared shirt and khaki pants makes for classy airport wear.

Beachin': Both the shirt and drawstring shorts are available in your nearest Regatta store.

We’re not saying the current faux bohemian look has gone out of style. But your next summer trip to the beach, whether it’s Sorsogon or anywhere else, is most likely going to be hella picturesque. And if you’re planning on a wardrobe as photogenic as your destination, or going on an adventure bound to keep its beauty even in your memory, Regatta’s a super good place to start. An Instax in hand certainly wouldn’t hurt, either.

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You can keep up with what Regatta is up to locally on their Instagram account, @regattalifestyle.

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