The Seven Suites Hotel Observatory differentiates itself from all other hotels in the country with its unique feature: it is a hotel and at the same time, an astronomical observatory!
Here are some reasons why I believe Seven Suites a good place to conduct astronomical observations, especially for kids and the family:
1. It offers skies dark enough for some decent visual observations and astronomy photography. For astronomy enthusiasts, a safe place with dark skies is very appealing.
2. It is equipped with a 12-inch telescope (one of the most powerful in the country). Using this telescope, it is possible to see Jupiter and its moons, Saturn and its rings, icecaps of Mars, phases of Venus, the craters of the moon, some galaxies, and nebula. Of course, it will all depend on the weather and the time of the year.
3. Its resident astronomer, Ramon, is more than qualified to guide you in observing the moon, stars, and the planets. Ramon is also a good friend of mine and a colleague at the UP Astronomical Society (our astronomy club back in college).
With Seven Suites’s resident astronomer Ramon (back), Winston, and me.
Orion, taken at Seven Suites. Notice that the nebula (M 42) is visible in this photo.
View from Seven Suites. The bright object above the horizon is Venus.
4. It has a good vantage point. Since it is located in the elevated areas of Antipolo, you can take good photos of the sunset and city lights from its observing deck. It is recommended that you bring cameras or binoculars.
5. It is a hotel observatory! You can either spend the night under the stars (literally sleep under the stars) or opt to book a room instead. It means you get to enjoy astronomy without the hassle of camping out. It also means you’ll have access to electricity and the Internet.
Next time you hear news about astronomical events such as a super moon, a meteor shower, a solar or lunar eclipse, an appearance of a comet, or simply, a desire to enjoy some star or moon gazing, be sure to check out Seven Suites.
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For tutorials on how to get started with astrophotography, click here.
For DIY astronomy projects useful for astrophotography, click here.
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© Anthony Urbano (Manila, Philippines)