Sonam Choeden

FOUNDER, LOGISTICS & BOOKINGS Paro Office, Bhutan

Sonam Choeden worked in the Education Sector in various capacities for close to 2 decades. Her interest in  tourism and the hospitality business grew when she started her own tourist hotel which she managed for 6 years. Meeting and coming across guests from different countries with varied interests, some who seemed to have not quite got ‘what they were promised on their trip’, the idea to start a tourist agency developed. Sonam is originally from Kanglung village in Trashigang, East Bhutan but now lives in Paro. Sonam is Bhutan Homestay’s Operations Manager and will be the main contact person in Bhutan for guests of Bhutan Homestay.

Contact: schoeden@bhutanhomestay.com Mobile: +975 17110344

 

Ulrike Cokl (Ph.D.)

FOUNDER • TRAVEL DESIGNER • RESEARCH • GUIDE

Europe/Bhutan

Ulli is deeply connected to Bhutan and her people. She has lived in in the little kingdom on and off  for many years. For her doctoral degree in social and cultural anthropology (UCL, U.K.) she conducted extensive ethnographic research over four years in remote places of the kingdom. Among others she investigated how traditional hospitality practices, travelling & gift-exchange inform social relationships in rural communities. Hence, she is very familiar with village livelihoods throughout the country. Based on her research Ulli explores unique and sustainable ways of farm/homestay tourism. Therefore Sonam and Nedup offered her to apply her insights within the Bhutan Homestay project. She happily obliged since her approach, which she outlined as the thuenlam-approach, aims at supporting farmers by creating a niche income.  Furthermore, it also allows visitors to immerse more deeply in various localities and aspects of Bhutanese culture.

With such great passion for Bhutan Ulli also co-founded the Bhutan Network, an Austrian and Swiss based association that facilitates equal exchange between people in Bhutan and Europe. When in Bhutan Ulli is always on the move, exploring new homes in remote places. She loves developing unique itineraries that offer a glimpse into the rich cultural traditions and practices of Bhutanese society. Ulli’s mother tongue is German, an advantage for our German speaking guests. Upon request, Ulli guides tours in German and English language. Contact: ulrike@bhutanhomestay.com

Nedup Dorjee

FOUNDER, London Office, United Kingdom

Nedup Dorjee was born in Eastern Bhutan. He studied Hotel Business administration in Germany and completed a Masters in Tourism Marketing at Surrey University, England. In the early 1980s he was in charge of Trekking and Mountaineering under the state controlled Bhutan Tourism Corporation. During his tenure as head of Trekking and Mountaineering, he surveyed trekking routes throughout Bhutan and led the first Italian group of trekkers on what is now famously known as the ‘Snowman trek’. He now permanently resides in the United Kingdom. His passion is to see tourism develop in Bhutan where the benefit goes directly to the rural communities.

Contact: ngodrup@bhutanhomestay.com Tel: +44 2077040786