The floating hotels on the Islands of los Uros
“We are always waiting for a tourist or a friend to come. We always want them to leave very happy and pleased with our business, with our home. We hope that they enjoy the floating beds at our small venture that we call `Hotels with floating beds’ “.
I was actually born on another island further away from here. When I was young I did not know of tourists – I was very afraid of them. When I married my husband, I moved into this area. Like all women here, my work was weaving crafts. I was taking care of the house and of my children.
When a Dutch couple told me “Cristina, why don’t you set up a cottage, someone might want to spend the night on the island,” I thought it was a fantastic idea and I thought that maybe, someday, this might work.
In the beginning, some people in the community said that we were crazy, even my husband. He would say “you are crazy, no one will stay there.” No one believed that anyone could stay here because it is quite cold, there is no electricity, and there is no water.
But we pushed this project forward, and now more tourists are coming to stay. Now, the whole family is involved in this work.
I think this can be called a sustainable project as it is about caring for our environment, respecting our people, all of this. It is also about valuing our identity.
I am always telling to our fellow brothers in other communities “Invest your time in training, in learning how to manage this type of business. With each client, you will gain something every time and keep expanding,” like we did.
My dream is to create a small travel agency so that the tourists
can come directly from their country to our houses in different parts of our country. It can be in Cuzco, in Arequipa, in Lima, in Lambayeque… In different places, wherever our communities can receive tourists. This is our dream.
Cristina Suaña, Peru