Eco Hotels Philippines
- Member of Eco Hotel Philippines’ Sustainability Group; our activities, events and work has been focused on promoting environmental and sustainable initiatives and practices to the communities around our hotels, and to other hotels and businesses.
- Eco Gives Back; an Eco Hotels program focused on educating street children in Metro Manila that having fun and living life should NOT be wasteful or harmful to the environment.
- Green Conference; a platform for environmental and sustainable organisations and companies to raise awareness and educate people about environmental problems and what we can do to help.
- Carood Watershed – Pilar, Bohol (VSO: Voluntary Services Overseas project)
Three things you focus on in your work:
Impact. It’s very important for me to know the effects or impact of the work that our company and I do – to the people (our guests, staffs), to the communities and to the environment where are our hotels are located. Are we doing good? Are we doing it enough? What more can we do? What can we do better? At the end of the day, it’s the positive change and impact that I look forward to.
Adding value. To myself and to the company that I work for. That is why continuous learning is important for me and I really make time for this.
Myself. It is a must that we really take good care of ourselves, our health and well-being. You cannot function or do your job if you are not well. Your mind-set, and how you are at work, affects the work that you do, your actions, decision making process, your output and the people around you (most importantly your team).
Three things that are important to you when working:
The advocacy, cause and purpose of the company that I work for are the most important things for me – these three push and inspire me to add value to the work that I do, and go beyond my job role.
Great leaders, team and environment. I am blessed enough to have leaders and a group of people who share the same passion towards the environment and the hospitality industry. They are people who I look forward to seeing and working with every day. They are people who trust, empower and inspire me to do great work. They allow me to voice my ideas and suggestions, and let me make decisions accordingly; consequently stretching myself and making me grow further.
Goal and vision. It is very important for me to have a clear direction of where the company is heading, what good they would like to achieve and how I could play a part in that process. Meeting people, connecting with them, planning and executing events and coming up with new projects or ideas are just some of the amazing add-on’s I enjoy with my job!
Top Tip for your Hospitality colleagues:
There are so many things that can be done in and through the hospitality industry. As a business in the tourism industry, we do have a huge role in the community where we operate (providing jobs and opportunities), in our country (by bringing in guests from around the world; economic growth) and in our environment (where we chose to operate and where we make the biggest impact).
If you want to pursue a career in this industry, or if you have found yourself in it, take the time to really reflect and think about what would you want to do, what impact would you like to make and how do you plan to do that. When you find it, prepare for it and give your very best in every single thing you do.
Your WHY’s must be crystal clear to you, so you can go back to them especially when things are not happening as you want them to. Work hard towards them and be patient in the process. Find your Ikigai (Ikigai translates roughly as the thing that you live for, or the thing you wake up for); what you love; what you are good at; and what can be paid for. And what the world needs.
Mistakes and rejections will always be part of the process. Use it to fuel yourself to reach for your goals. Partner your ikigai with a lot of hard work, thirst for continuous learning, focus and determination (and be trainable/ coachable!), and everything else will follow.
Growing up, I have been continuously exposed to volunteering and developmental works through my high school Alma Mater Siena College Rizal and De la Salle University Manila – going to communities, teaching kids and coming up with activities/project that are geared towards different causes.
In my first job, I was a very active volunteer with the IBM Club. Then, four years ago, I was given this massive opportunity to be part of VSO (Voluntary Service Overseas), a United Kingdom government funded organization that brings together UK citizens and local volunteers, to various locations all over the world, where they are most needed.
At that time, I was assigned in Pilar, Bohol. At the age of 25 years old, I was fulfilling my life goal. I was the oldest in the batch, I dropped everything to stay in Bohol for 3 months, lived like a local and worked with the youth of the community and the local government to ensure the protection of the Carood Watershed. It was the most amazing time of my life!
I couldn’t turn back after that. I felt that, moving forward, everything that I do should be for something meaningful and with a purpose.
The environment is one of my top most advocacies. Climate change is real and it is happening right now. When I took up my Masters in International Integrated Resort Management at the University of Macau, my final thesis paper was about CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) Priorities in the Integrated Resorts in Macau, China. I focused my research in determining the roles, functions, activities and priorities of the major IRs (Investor Relations) in Macau. I interviewed several executives, Vice President’s, Directors and employees of different hotels and learned massively from them.
When I came back to the Philippines, I got hired by Eco Hotels. I joined them because I believe in their advocacy, Vision and Mission. I want to be part of the change that they are aiming for. I want the people to have a choice to go eco; to go green and have a meaningful and purposeful stay when they travel. I make sure that through my marketing job I am able to reach out to everyone, to make them aware and encourage them to make the greener choice of staying with us, that travelling or going on vacation does not need to be harmful to the environment.
Since I’ve started with Eco Hotels, our activities, events and work has been focused on promoting environmental and sustainable initiatives and practices. If anyone would visit or stay with any of our 8 Eco hotels in the country, they will find a number of sustainable practices including and not limited to:
- the use of solar power, recycling and up-cycling including denims, wine bottles, scraps, plastics and many more
- re-purposing of hotels
- farm to fork experience
- vertical gardens
- rain water catchment, water refilling stations
- toiletries (shampoo, conditioner, lotion) refilling stations through BYOB (Bring Your Own Bottle).
We also hire 100% local and use local products as well. We make sure we practice the principle of ecotourism in our hotels.
Last year, we started our first ever Green Conference, a platform for environmental and sustainable organisations and companies, to raise awareness and educate people about environmental problems and what we can do to help. This year, we are going to have our 3rd Green Conference.
Also last year, I have given talks to organisations and students about being Eco.
Even our CSR, Eco Gives Back was focused on educating street children in Metro Manila; that having fun and living life should NOT be wasteful nor harmful to the environment.
Aside from my marketing job, I am part of our Sustainability Team. We work on everything; ideas, project and activities which focuses on environmental sustainability in our hotels.
During my free time, I maximize the gift of internet in order to read, research, find mentors who I can connect with and learn from. I am lucky to be given the opportunity to help and serve, and to have a job that I enjoy and love; marketing and environmental sustainability.
What’s in your future?
Right now, there is so much left to do. There are loads of opportunities and possibilities and I wouldn’t want to limit myself.
I’m looking forward to more learning and experiences that would make me a better person; as an individual, a marketing person, an advocate for the environment and a hotelier.
I would definitely love to study further; possibly take some short courses or certifications about marketing and environmental sustainability.
And I’d like to create more projects for the environment. Give more talks. Organise more events. Find a more sustainable approach and solution towards our environmental issues that we are facing. The list is endless!