We are a bit skeptical when it comes to ghost encounters. We haven’t seen one but there are strange happenings in our life that we’ve had experienced in the past that will make a good share for ghost stories with the barkadas.
Halloween and All Souls Day are both far from this month of August but what the heck. Here’s a short story of our experience when we bravely visited the infamous haunted house in Baguio, the Laperal White House, last Aug. 5, 2015.
The challenge to visit Laperal started as we began traveling from Manila a day before we stepped inside the infamous house. All of us ( 4 bloggers and 3 members of the agency team) were all thinking of the places that we’ll have to visit once we’re in Baguio City. Erica, mom of three, was very hesitant on the planned visit but we’ve managed to coached her to go along with us.
To cut it short, Day 2 of our Baguio itinerary, after our lunch at Hill Station, we proceeded to #14 Leonard Wood Road also known as Laperal White House. Given that it was high noon, the sense of fright didn’t bother us as we registered and pay a P50 fee to explore the whole house.
Yes. You have to pay the entrance fee to scare yourself. Well, that was just a joke.
The P50 entrance fee is part of Tan Yan Kee Foundation, headed by business tycoon Lucio Tan, and the Philippine Bamboo Association‘s program to preserve and protect the bamboo trees in Baguio. Since Tan acquired the place in 2007 and transformed Laperal into a Filipino gallery with artworks based on bamboo, was opened to the public and the entrance fee goes to the Bamboo Art Exhibit/Museum.
The security guard who was manning the house at the time of our visit was kuya Danny, as he would wanted to be called by that name.
The Laperal mansion was built in the 1920s by couple’s Don Roberto and Dona Victorina during the American rule in the country. By the time that Japanese invaded Baguio, the house was terrorized. Stories of rape, murders, and bloodshed inside the house, were made known by survivors of that tragic times.
The matriarch died before Don Roberto’s whose death came by a freak accident when he slipped, head first, on the stairs in front of the house.
It was around 12:30 noon when we went inside the house. Laperal is like an ordinary ancestral homes with original furniture and fixtures that is still displayed alongside the newly-painted walls. According to popular belief, the house was painted with original yellowish color and was repainted into white when Tan bought the place. It was also that time that Laperal came to be known as the White House in Baguio.
We were video recording the living room and dining area, took photos as well, before we went upstairs the second floor. We were just about to start going up when Erica, who was frantically in haste, asked us to accompany her outside the house. She felt spooked and her reaction was a bit normal for people who are not into visiting haunted houses. Erica claims that she have never saw ghosts in her entire life but she does sometimes feel eerie and ominous presence.
She grabbed our arm and managed to get outside with our help and promised never to go back again inside. She said that there’s something unpleasant inside the house. She asked us if we felt it too.
We left Erica outside as she began chatting with kuya Danny and asked more details about Laperal.
We went back inside and met the rest of the group on the second and up to the third floor. We saw the rooms and the cabinet where they say ghosts appear inside. We tried to open the cabinet and all we saw was a full frame photo of a scared man’s face, who we believed was placed there for some comic relief. At least, there was a reason to laugh inside the house.
Earth, who blogs about fashion and lifestyle, went first to the attic, told us that she felt a force that kinda pushed her back as she opened the door to it. “It was like something came out in there,” she told us.
The attic was the last part of the house that we visited before deciding that we should stop and go back outside our waiting van.
Outside, we caught up with kuya Danny sharing his ghostly experiences since he started working in Laperal in February 2015. He told us that he once saw a child and when he tried to go near, the child disappeared. He also saw a woman dressed in white in the middle of the night staring by the window from the house. Kuya Danny grabbed his flashlight and tried to get the woman’s attention but she disappeared. Kuya Danny remembered that all that was left was a smoke (probably a mist) going down the ground.
Maybe the kid that kuya Danny mentioned was the grand daughter of the owner of the house who was accidentally ran over and killed as she was crossing the road outside the house. The story goes that the woman who keeps on appearing by the window on the 3rd floor, was, according to popular belief, was the nanny who committed suicide after that road accident.
Watch our conversation with kuya Danny recorded on video below. In our video, we erroneously labeled the woman as the daughter of the owners of the mansion. Our bad.
That and many stories has spawned from the haunted Laperal White House. In one of I-Witness documentary episodes, Jay Taruc and a team of spirit questor performed a lock-down inside Laperal White House. They recorded the happenings through CCTV and some footage revealed eerie scenes captured by their cameras.
After our short talk with kuya Danny, we decided to go back to our hotel to freshen up.
Along the way, Erica insisted that she felt something weird and asking us if we did feel the same. Like we’ve mentioned, we’re a bit skeptical on ghosts but there’s something that we must share.
When we first enter the house, it was just plain ordinary. We were excited because it was our first time to enter the mansion. Okay, we’re having goosebumps now.
When Erica grabbed our arm and pulled us out of the house, we did not tell her immediately that we were also feeling something weird. It was a heavy feeling, like something or someone is trying to push or blocking your way. We also felt our throat getting dry. We were experiencing that the whole time we were inside the house.
And when we told that to Erica, she also mentioned that she also felt something heavy and her throat has also gone dry. We don’t know if that’s coincidence or was just a product of our imagination. But frankly, we want to believe that something strange is happening inside the house.
Maybe we were fortunate that we came to the house during daytime. But what about those who bravely entered the house in the middle of the night?
Kuya Danny told us that the gate closes by 6 PM.
Whatever it was that’s inside Laperal mansion, it will take a brave soul to stay there with all those haunted stories that have been passed around through decades.
If you want to see what happens during a lock-down, watch the films Grave Encounters 1 and 2.
How to get to #14 Leonard Wood Road aka Laperal White House
- Install the GrabTaxi mobile app
- Book a cab via GrabTaxi if you’re coming from SM City Baguio or Victory Liner bus station
- Key in ‘BAGUIO’ as your promo code and get FREE booking fee (Aug. 5 – 31)
- Get P50 discount on your total metered fare (Aug. 5- 31)
- *Regular GrabTaxi booking fee is P25
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