SParadise in Palawan
Puerto Princesa City is a paradise. It boasts of the world-famous Underground River and Tubbataha Reef, beautiful Honda Bay and Sabang Beach, Cowrie Island and Lu-Li Island, Butterfly Garden, Tribal Village, Ugong Rock, Wildlife Rescue and Conservation Center, Mitra Farm, and the Special Battalion WW2 Memorial Museum. Hundreds of fireflies light up the night, too!
Puerto Princesa is not only home to these tourist attractions, but also the location of the first full solar-powered spa in Palawan – Ella Spa. The “Solar Man” himself, Korean national Ralph Kim, had a vision on his very first day in the city – to build a business entirely powered by the sun.
In 2015, Kim came to the Philippines and saw the country’s energy problems. He has been around Asia but felt particularly drawn to the Philippines because he says the people are friendly. He set his heart in the Philippines and went back and forth before establishing his mission here, which is to use solar power for electricity.
“Sunshine is a gift from God. It is clean and free. We should use it. You have abundant sunlight here, but a shortage of electricity supply,” was Kim’s thought then.
He established the Unique Korean Corporation, a company that supplies solar energy to residential, commercial, and industrial clients from the Sky Taeho main factory in Korea.
Years later, Kim established the 600-square meter, 50-bed Ella Spa, 15 rooms, which harnesses the natural energy of the sun with 20kw solar power. Forty-eight solar panels and 40 batteries power the spa’s 13 air-conditioning units and almost 100 lights.
TESDA-trained and licensed therapists await guests at Ella Spa. Department of Tourism Secretary Wanda Teo herself is excited to visit the spa.
“This will definitely help boost tourism in our country,” said Teo.
Ella Spa is only five minutes away from the airport and is open from 11 in the morning to midnight. Perfect to cap off the day.
“Try our specialty massages: Swedish, Aromatherapy, Hot Stone, Deep Tissue, Shiatsu, Thai, and Reflexology. We even have massages only for pregnant women,” said Kim.