Here it is… we are temporarily closing the shop… We were so proud that we were still open and further developing the different freediving brands with two years of pandemic and strict lockdown. Proud but exhausted… Last November and December, things were finally looking up – borders were looking to open up, the academy was buzzing, we had a great group of people around, we were diving every day, and our instructors and team were all having a blast… Finally, after two years of struggling, we were a proper Freedive Academy again!
Then came super typhoon Odette / Rai… Perpetual rainfall and winds of up to 270km/h destroyed the islands and the beautiful province of Bohol. The destruction, the helplessness, it felt so unfair, after two years of strict lockdown without any light at the end of the tunnel, now this.
We have lot’s of damage, Panglao has been hit hard, mainland Bohol has it even worse, we have no electricity, no water, limited communication and again, no tourists and no hope…
We started developing the plans for the new Freedive Academy and location in March 2019. We got the keys on September 1st 2019, and ever since, we have been building, developing, repairing everything at the new location, all while trying to stay afloat. And it’s enough – for now! After almost three years working our but off, Emily and I need a break, a long-overdue hard-earned break…
So what’s next? We’re going to fight, rebuild and develop the different freediving brands!
It’s is the only option. A few days after the typhoon, a new friend from Manila arrived to join one of our instructor courses. Just an hour ago, he published this review on one of the review sites.
“My time in the academy was not good, it wasn’t better coz you know why? It was one of the BEST training experience I had. Emily and Vincent is one generous and kind couple. They are generous in terms of sharing there skills and knowledge when it comes to freediving. Despite the trying times, they even gave us their Go Deep freediving tools. That is how generous they are. I also need to mention that they are also quite funny especially Emily who’s laughter is so contageous. If you are a dog lover they have these adorable rescued dogs, Leah, being my fave. hehe.
In terms of the place, it didn’t feel like an academy nor a training institution as their place feels like an extention to my HOME and Vincent and Emily is my family. A family member that supports you all throughout. Encourages and lifts you up and most of all cheer you on.
I will never forget my AWESOME experience in the academy. I can’t wait for their new freediving ventures as I believe in their vision.”
Thank you K! We feel very blessed having you around these past weeks – you helped lift our spirits! Have a good trip back to Manila! We are looking forward to seeing you back here!
And this is why we do what we do. We want the Freedive Academy to be a home, a family of freedivers enjoying the ocean together and learning proper and technical freediving and how to teach and share this wonderful sport and hobby.
In the coming weeks, we are not running any courses, there is no retail in Panglao, and the gates are closed.
We are going to sleep out late, take the dogs to the beach, and probably do lots of wining and dining
We’ll still answer emails – likely with some delays. We’ll continue to process online orders. And in the meantime, to get away from the work we’ve been doing for so long, we’ll start with some new exciting freediving projects and brands.
Furthermore, we want to wish Cebu, Moalboal, and Siargao freedivers the best in rebuilding their shop.
And finally, a very humble and big big big thank you to all the Panglao and Manila freedivers! Your support has been uplifting, incremental and you helped us move forward again. Thank you!
See you all again mid-February!
Love Vincent and Emily