A new resort is born!

We, Arie and Desirée, have started a big adventure: a second resort in the beautiful Philippines. On this webpage we like to show you month by month this fantastic challenge, starting at the beginning all the way to our opening date July 1, 2015

Enjoy like we enjoy it!

Arie & Desirée

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to send us an email!
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April 2015

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3 months to go! The first week of April is spent with our friends. All workers are enjoying Eastern (Holy Week) with their families and they will come back when our friends have gone home.
A big job that needs to be done is putting cogon on all the roofs of the bungalows, on the reception and on the bar. Cogon is a local grass that gets tied up in bundles and fixed with wood and bamboo. It looks great and it will give an extra insulation against the burning sun. As much as possible we are now putting plants and trees to get the place flowery and green.

March 2015

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4 months to the actual opening date, but only 4 weeks before we have our firsts guests come. We have a group of Swedish friends that are willing to do a test and they arrive April 1, no Aprils fool! The rain water is pumped out of the pool and the contractor comes to finalize the pool. After that we have a 3 weeks to get the pool filled with water. More furniture arrives and we have 7 bungalows operational. The Magic Oceans boat 1 is moved from Magic Island to here. But the best part of this month: 2 big Coltri compressors are delivered and installed. Wow, do they look great!

February 2015

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With 5 months to go before the opening it is now time to get all the electricity wires done. The Boheco (Bohol Electrical Company) connects the resort to 3 phase and make a proper grounding. Our electrician Efren with his team put miles and miles of wire threw the whole resort. Efren has learned the European colour codes for the wires, so we can ensure safety. The upper level terrace gets green stones as the finishing and the outside wall of the pool also. As this is an artistic job, it takes a while but we think that end of March it should be ready.

January 2015

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The beautiful balustrade for the restaurant has arrived and it turned out just as we wanted. It is thick mahogany wood in an Asian design, perfect. The bungalows on the upper level at the pool are looking great and now the stairs get a pebble flooring to be sure it is not slippery. A first batch of furniture arrives; the factory does not want to stock everything until it is all finished. So the dive center is turned into a furniture showroom.

December 2014

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This is a short month with only 2 ½ week of work. Most of our workers are from Moalboal, Cebu, so they all go home to celebrate the holidays with their families. The roof of the reception is made, so the building starts to get shape. More and more plants are being brought into our nursery, from small palm trees to hibiscus, etc. Our puppy dogs get their first swimming lesson in the pool, which is full of rainwater.

November 2014

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The upper bungalows are now being finished, one by one. The ceilings and the outside of the bungalow are covered with amakan and bamboo, the tiles are being put in place and the plant boxes are painted. When all the upper bungalows are done, I can finally start with the landscaping.
The terraces outside of the restaurant are being flattened so that we can clearly see the big spacious terrace, shaded by gorgeous trees and overlooking the sea.

October 2014

We had a visit from the professional photographer Karin Brussaard and she made a fantastic movie from the resort (October 8, 2014) and also made a few dives and visited the local tourist attractions. The municipality was so happy that we want to explore day trips close to Anda (as this will support the whole community) that they drove us around and they offered us a native lunch.

August 2014

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A major job has been completed this month - the whole roof of the restaurant is finished (and it is a big roof!). Also all the walls are nearing completion and all floors have been concreted.
Of the 16 bungalows, 12 now have their bathrooms finished, 12 down and 4 to go. In the meantime our carpenters are putting the wooden ceilings into the bungalows, so that later they can put the amakan over it. Amakan is a mat woven from thin bamboo strips, it looks beautiful and native.

July 2014

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As it is low season our fleet Captain, Juan, has had time to build a boat. Our first Magic Oceans boat is finished except for an engine and the bamboo outriggers.
Teddy, the carpenter that does such fantastic tile work, is also a great gardener. He suggested to me that he will start making bonsai trees right away as they take a while to become attractive. Now that is what I call thinking ahead, thank you Teddy!
The construction of the restaurant has started. It is a big project but with the many good, skilled workers we have, it is progressing quickly. At the end of July the walls are complete so they can start installing the wood for the roof.
The first bungalow has not yet been tiled but the walls are finished and painted and windows are being put in place - we are now ready to start ordering the furniture.

June 2014

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June 5 we opened our road for traffic. First we let an empty truck drive down and up. Then we make the test with a truck full of gravel down. Back up we load it with the workers (the gravel is dumped, ready for use); every worker we have, and drive back up. Perfect, brilliant engineering.
Except for the tiles of the floor, the first bungalow is ready and it turned out just as we wanted it. The grass on the roof looks great and gives a perfect isolation against the heat of the sun. Bamboo matting on the outside and on the ceilings creates that native look which is finished by using also bamboo for the baluster. The upper terrace is being made and it is big enough for nice gardens, sunbathing and sunbrella’s. The second bungalow has got his bathroom ready.

May 2014

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This is the month of the big 10 wheel truck full of cement. Cement for the pool, the road and the plastering. Hundreds and hundreds of bags are used and truck loads of sand and gravel. One big problem, it has not been raining for over a month and the supplies of sand and gravel are running short. We never thought we would wish for rain, but a few days very strong rain in the mountains would be useful. The workers have started to finish our first bungalow, so that we can get pictures to show you how it is going to be.

April 2014

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The tiles are being delivered, OMG, it’s a lot! The dive center gets it final roof which is looking good. A lot of work is done within the dive center as well with installation of electricity, water lines, airlines (for the camera areas), etc. The pool is getting into shape; the concreting can be done next month. Another big truck arrives full of windows for the bungalows. Slowly but surely all bungalows are having their plastering completed, a major job and not one which shows a lot of obvious progress.

March 2014

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We have finished our first bathroom and that is really important as we need to test it. After testing we can order 1500+ tiles for the walls, 1000+ for the flooring, 16 washing bowls, etc, etc. All bungalows now have their walls and the basic roofing. The dive center also now has a partial roof. We are still working on the road down to the resort but won’t be able to finish it this month although it will be ready very soon.








February 2014

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The septic tanks are ready and will get their own dedicated zone. This zone will be made carefully with the right kind of sand and gravel and then planted with the right kind of plants mixed with hibiscus for the necessary colour. The team from the septic tanks move on to the cutting of the pool and by the end of February the shape is good and construction of the pool can start. Also the laundry building is ready and for the time being we will house our office in there, nice and cool under the shade of lots of germalina and coconut trees.

January, 2014

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On the 6th of January we have no idea how many workers will report but we are hoping for about 60 people. We are overwhelmed to find out that in total 90 workers arrive that morning to start the construction of Magic Oceans Dive Resort. The area is buzzing with activity and from a distant it looks like an anthill. Our new neighbours put up a few small sari-sari stores so that the workers can buy snacks and drinks. All the bungalows and the dive center are now under construction and every day you see the resort growing, we are starting to get a really good impression of how it will look when finished.

December 2013

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All buildings are now marked by posts and yellow tape, the whole area looks like a [crime scene from the movies]. In one blink we can now see if the design we have worked so long to make, is working out and it does work out! Minor changes are made to the big master plan and then the wait is on for the final okay for the building permits. The crew of carpenters and helpers is selected and Christmas and New Year are celebrated in the midst of great guests at Magic Island. The calm before the storm - construction will start on January 6, 2014!





September, October and November 2013

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Those months are spent making more progress on the initiatives already mentioned for August. It is amazing how much we have thought of and then to discover every day new topics to be researched and added to our to-do-list.
We now have our own PCO, which stands for Pollution Control Officer. He will make sure that our resort will be clean, green, environmentally friendly and fully compliant with the very good and strict rules and regulations of the Department of Environmental and Natural Resources.

August 2013

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A temporary house and office is built so that we can store our construction materials and have an internet connection to stay in touch with the outside world. The road is still under construction, the schedule is to finish it in about 6 months! In the meantime Arie and Desiree continue to make a plan for the resort. Where shall we locate the dive centre, the restaurant, how many bungalows do we want to build and how will we arrange them so that the most of them have sea view, etc., etc.
After the plan and the drawings are ready, we start up the processing of the building permits. We know that this will take some time, but we can use that time to further research building materials, boat designs, energy saving aircons, soundproof compressor room, rainwater collection systems, pool designs and lots more.

July 2013

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After we have submitted our basic electricity plan, 9 big electricity posts are put up and a big transformer will take care of our electricity for now. After that the biggest challenge we have: a road down to the property - literally DOWN. Also getting water seems to be a problem; the waterline is and stays dry. But we have experience with no-water-situations and so we buy a truck to solve that. The road down is examined by engineers and architects and everyone agrees: it can be done and so we start the first big piece of construction work.

June 2013

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In May there was not a lot we could do. The road had to be finalized first and also the processing of the papers had to be done. Besides that we had a lot of guests at Magic Island, so we spend our time with them. Our new property is so remote that there is no water and electricity, so in June we begin to arrange that.
The picture shows the making of the road.


April 2013

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After the necessary research and negotiations, the contract can be signed. The road is being constructed at the moment of signing and we are so excited. This is the first time we can reach the site without going thru a cornfield and jungle style area. It will take another month before the road is ready for a car, but no problem, we just take a motorbike for now.
The picture is made during the hard work of the land surveyor.

March 2013

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We return to Anda, Bohol to start our research for properties for sale. At first it seems impossible to find something but then we get a few hints. While investigating them we laid our eyes for the first time on what is now going to be Magic Oceans. Other pieces of land all had several disadvantages but this one had only one problem - how to get down to it. When we approached the area, we had to climb down a steep rocky wall, but once we were down: wow! Green, quiet, full of opportunities AND fantastic diving in front!
The picture is our very first glance at the property

February 2013

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After a lot of research to find a good location for a second resort, we traveled at the beginning of February to Anda, Bohol. We had heard that the diving there is pristine and that it is a very quiet part of Bohol. After several days and many dives we were convinced; this is a great spot for diving and a fantastic area for exploring. 15 kilometers of reef in great condition, mangroves around the corner and on the horizon we see Camiquin Island with another 10 kilometers of diving.