It sits atop a cliff that offers one of Guam’s most famous and breathtaking views. The spirit of this very special place is embodied in a beloved local legend, a classic romantic tale of two star-crossed lovers who were denied their wish to be together. When the threat of being torn apart loomed ever closer, they tied their hair in a knot and leaped off the cliff together. The cliff, or cape, of course, is Puntan Dos Amantes, or Two Lovers Point. Some believe that when you look up at the cliff from the shores of Tumon you can see their two faces looking out to sea.
On top of the cliff, there are few specific places that can provide such an expansive and priceless vista like this new restaurant and bar called Terraza (literally, “terrace”). From the parking area it can be seen tucked along the edge of the cliff. After climbing two small flights of stairs you are greeted by a friendly host, as you feel the updraft from the cape below. The cool ocean breeze carries the sound of water lapping against the shores. Taking a look around the open-air terrace and the view it affords that you can’t help but be overcome with the beauty of the island.
Although you can enjoy the sights from any seat in the restaurant, it is the lower deck that pieces all the beauty into one. From left to right, you can see the entire expanse of Tumon Bay and where it meets the sea—the lush green land of the villages that meet the border of Tumon, the stores, restaurants, shops and hotels, and the beaches with locals and tourists enjoying the water. You can see fishermen casting their nets and rods into the sea, paddlers in six-man outriggers gliding on the water in and outside the reef, jet skis speeding along, and big boats searching for dolphins.
Terraza is owned by Calvo Enterprises. “We, of course, had a long list of name ideas,” explains Leonard Calvo, “but at the end of the day, it was ‘Terraza’ that we kept coming back to. It fit and felt right.” The definition of terrace, a raised and open platform, is perfect. When looking down from the top it almost seems like the platform is floating. The design was meant to follow the topography of the land, and avoid tearing up the cliff-side. Everything had to be cut to fit the cliff and to be structurally sound.
Andy Laguana designed the Terraza, and was also the designer of the new Guam Museum. In consideration of Guam’s natural disasters and the elements, the structure is meant to withstand typhoon-strength winds. Made of wood and steel, the building will be treated every six months to maintain its sustainability. The interior of Terraza was modeled after a beer garden. Its beautiful wooden decks are lined with rows of mahogany communal tables and benches, which are meant to be shared and to encourage conversation between strangers.
At the back of the deck is a long wooden bar. Behind the bar is a single beer tower that can hold 12 draft beers, an ice cream machine for those warm days, a coffee machine, and much more. “This has been a long time coming,” says Calvo. “We’ve been dreaming of a permanent place where locals and tourists can come, enjoy food, drinks, and the view; where people can bring their friends and family and see the island from above."
Terraza is currently open from 8am to 7pm. You can come and have your morning coffee, meet a friend for lunch, or enjoy the sunset at dinner. The establishment is also available for booking, whether you want the beauty of Guam to be the backdrop to your wedding party, birthday, or any other private event.
Chris Dahl, Terraza’s general manager, says their menu items will make your mouth water. “We have a USDA-certified Angus beef patty that is topped with bacon, cheddar, and caramelized onion jam in the middle of a brioche style bun,” he reveals. Also on the menu are three types of sausages: bratwurst, spicy Korean, and chicken, along with other fares such as Spicy Teriyaki Wings, Garlic Truffle Fries, Sausage and Cheese Platter. There is a kid’s menu as well.
Terraza expects to expand its menu and hours and to take advantage of the iconic location. “Guam needs more attractions and signature places,” explains Calvo. “I love the view here, and it was time to build something where we could share it. A place for people to come, from any place in the world, and see Guam’s natural charm.”
A group of patrons reach the top and immediately gravitate towards the lower deck as if in a trance. “Oohs” and “ahhs” escape from their mouths as they reach for their cameras. One woman leans over the railing and closes her eyes as the sea air rushes up and brushes her face.
The community is already enjoying the view at Terraza
Calvo can't be more excited for this new beginning called Terraza. He hopes that it will become one of the signature places for Guam. We wanted to create a relaxing environment for people to come and enjoy this beauty," he says. "It's for visitors, it's for locals, and it's for all the generations that follow."
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