Balay Tubay, in El Nido, Palawan, Philippines, is actually two distinct establishments. There is the Balay Tubay Home of Arts and Music and the Balay Tubay Bistro. Look for more "branches" in coming months, as they are in the process of opening a tour company, amongst other things.
Both locations offer genuine cultural experiences for visitors to the town of El Nido, which is located in the Bacuit Bay on the Philippine Island of Palawan.
The Balay Tubay: Home of Arts and Music, is an artsy pub/restaurant that offers live music. This, in addition to a full bar and varied menu featuring appetizers, pizza and various meat dishes, has made the establishment a popular night spot for both locals and ex-pats. It is housed in an historic structure that was moved in recent years to its current location by owner Bong Acosta, a driving force in the art/music community of El Nido Town. The home ("balay"), once the residence of his ancestors, was a safehouse during one of the many Philippine occupance uprisings. Local musicians gather here nightly to perform western and local favorites up into the wee hours of the morning. It also features work by local artists. Off the beaten path, but easy enough to find, as any local will happily point you in the right direction. (Calle Real St, Bgy. Buena Suerte, El Nido, Palawan, Philippines Tel: +63 (0) 91 6730 7266)
Balay Tubay: Bistro, is a cozy restaurant located on the main drag of El Nido Town. Their specialty is fresh seafood, displayed in such a way that you pick out your own "Catch-of-the-Day" (truly), and they will grill it for you, on the spot, with your choice of bar-b-que or lemon butter seasoning. Prices are very reasonable. P600 for a clear-eyed Lapu Lapu (grouper) for two. P800 will fetch a fresh yellowfin tuna that will easily feed four. Other selections are whole squid, jumbo prawns, and lobster, to name a few. (Daily selections vary.) Included with the price are salad and side dishes, consisting of an assortment of starches and vegetables. Drinks include cocktails, beer, wine, and delightfully fresh and flavorful smoothies. Get there early for the best selection, as the place fills up fast, even during non-peak periods.(Calle Hama St., Bgy. Masagana, El Nido, Palawan, Philippines)