Responsible travel: Northeast Thailand villa accommodation
From the inception of the project, those involved were keen to ensure that the villa be designed, constructed and finished using local skills and labour, and then be operated by local villagers who would maximize the use of local produce and encourage the preservation of indigenous traditions.
From the builders and craftsmen who worked on the construction, through to the use of traditional Isaan silks, cottons, cushions and Isaan-heritage Ban Chiang pottery in the decoration, to the emphasis on fresh organic ingredients in the property’s gardens and a policy of strictly local employment, the goal was realized.
As Bongkot says, “collecting rainwater and minimizing water usage is automatic in a location where there is no mains water supply; using salt water chlorination in the swimming pool (as opposed to chlorine) makes sense in an area where salt is abundant; growing vegetables organically is a local tradition in villages whose inhabitants do not want to waste scant funds on fertilizers, and creating enduring local employment is something that the villagers of Isaan have sought for decades.” Then he adds, with a wry smile, “...and as for interaction with the local people, there are no other farang (foreign visitors) here, so who else can the visitors talk to!”
This property is operated by local families, who use local produce and services in the day to day running of the villa. Some of the produce grown organically on site includes pandanus leaves, kaffir lime leaves, limes, mint, coriander, mangoes, papaya, passion fruit, jackfruit, dragon fruit, banana, and papaya.
Facets of the project, such as local employment, an emphasis on a meaningful interaction with the locals and the protection of natural resources may all be tenets of modern buzzwords such as “sustainable tourism”, but at this villa they underlie the concept. This property is operated by local families, who use local produce and services in the day to day running of the villa. All revenues are distributed within the local community, and we aim to support reforestation, waste disposal programmes and education wherever possible.
We will show you the variety that exists in the vicinity and how they interact - from rice paddies to woodlands, from the lotus lake to listed wetlands. These are our heartlands and local villagers have been deeply rooted in their land here for centuries: the more we can do to protect and preserve it for our children, the better!