We opened White Villas Resort at Christmas 2012 on a 3,000 square meter piece of beach land, starting out with six rooms. Today we have a dozen rooms, a small swimming pool, a 2-storey restaurant by the sea, and can host up to ~30 guests. We are planning to add a small shop and café and that is it. We prefer to keep the place small and peaceful, not too busy and not crowded. Bigger is not always better. We’d rather focus on quality and experience. We are working to make the resort eco-friendlier.
‘We’ are Edna Mae born in a fishing village in the central Philippines and Jens Peter born on a farm in rural Denmark. We met and married in the 1990s. Today we are family of six living across the globe. Our mission is business with compassion and environmental care. We use our profits to help the local community, support livelihoods and develop organic farms.
Our staff are mostly women from local fishing families, many with no secondary education and few livelihoods options. Tourism has grown rapidly on Siquijor Island in recent years, and Siquijodnons are great hosts. Reliance on tourism can have its downsides as the current Covid-19 time is showing us. We keep our staff onboard while upgrading the resort for future guests.
We support local business initiatives via partnerships and reinvest income and profits locally. And we try to work against corruption. Corruption normally leads to injustice and inequity.
There are always opportunities to help and serve, often unexpected. It is not quick nor easy, nor always successful. But we try, learn, persevere, and move on in good faith. It is a meaningful journey.