PO‘IPU — Whaler’s Cove General Manager Marianne Martin was ecstatic, Friday, to present a $3,000 award to Stephanie Funtanilla of the Child and Family Service Nana’s House family resource center in Waimea.
“For my birthday, this year, we decided to support Nana’s House out on the Westside,” Martin said. “I love the Westside, and I love the people out there. We had my birthday celebration at the historic Waimea Theatre, and in lieu of gifts, suggested people donate to Nana’s House. We even had a big tip for all the children that came to the event. I think I want to do this for all my birthdays.”
The presentation comes on the heels of the Po‘ipu hotel being notified by Tripadvisor that it earned the Traveler’s Choice Best of the Best 2022 award, making it one of the top 1 percent of hotels, worldwide.
Martin said she checked and discovered Whaler’s Cove had finished in the No. 4 position of hotels being awarded by Tripadvisor. Whaler’s Cove has been in relation to Tripadvisor since 2010 when Martin assumed management of the condominium project.
“This is all the employees,” Martin said. “This is an incredible honor especially since we are independent in such a small tiny resort. We don’t even have close to the advertising budgets that the big hotels have. I have 12 employees, and I think I’m one of the few employers that had every single staff member return after such a long shut down from the pandemic.”
Alexis Valdez is one of those employees who spent about a month creating a donation box bearing a strong likeness to Nana’s House in Waimea. She was inspired by her mother who creates donation boxes for people celebrating weddings, graduations, and other big events.
“It’s made of cardboard,” Valdez said. “I just added popsicle sticks, tongue depressors, and painted it. I just started after asking Marianne if she had some extra wine bottle corks. I keep looking at it from where I work and figured I’d need to improve on the receptacle where people can drop their envelopes.”
Martin said Whaler’s Cove is going to continue to support Nana’s House by placing the beautiful rendition of Nana’s House in the hotel’s lobby and encourage visitors to help us support.
“I have been here 22 years,” Martin said. “We tried to find somebody that we could partner with, and we’re so lucky we found Nana’s House. It started when we tried to give away a bicycle for a young person, and the group we approached turned us down. Stephanie agreed to take the bicycle, telling us she already had someone in mind who could use it. She sent us a picture of that happy smile, and it reminded me of when I got my first bicycle.”
Funtanilla was most appreciative of the Whaler’s Cove presentation, and the Nana’s House replica.
“Have you been to Nana’s House,” Funtanilla asked Valdez. “It looks just like this except that I wish our flowers were as pretty as these.”
Source: The Garden Island