Running Valley Stream is a Family Affair


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Running Valley Stream is a Family Affair

Apr 23, 2024

Along the famously scenic Hummingbird Highway you will find the Valley Stream Farm and an unassuming driveway that leads through perfectly manicured orchards, past a pond, then through the rainforest to your Private Eden.  The lush rolling hills of citrus trees and soaring jungle-shrouded mountains of the region create a stunning backdrop to the marvelously secluded and infinitely luxurious vacation villa.  A testament to phenomenal architecture and impeccable design, Private Eden’s beauty is elevated by its verdant natural setting.  Visitors to this paradise are lavished with personalized attention and pampered with first-class service.  The staff are intimately familiar with the area and particularly proud of the property and they should be, seeing as they have called this place home for a generation.

Meet the Sandoval family

Maine, the calm and quiet patriarch with weathered hands and a shy smile that welcomes guests with a friendly wave from the field as he goes about his tasks as the farm leader.  He leads by example, typically working right alongside his men, passing down his knowledge and skills through hands-on teaching as evident by the sun-kissed skin on his arms and the dirt under his fingernails.

Ilma, his wife, and mother of their five children. She enjoys the fresh smell of the forest after a rain shower.  A nurturing soul, she attends to Private Eden guests with the same tenderness she flourishes upon her own family.  Ilma keeps the villa immaculate and well-stocked throughout your stay.

Michael and Selvin are two of their sons that just so happened to be born on the farm.  With extensive knowledge of the 200 private acres and the surrounding wilderness, these young men are an undisputed resource for information of flora and fauna of the tropical broadleaf rainforest and the adventures to be had nearby.  They take pride in sharing the magic of this uncommonly beautiful place with guests and they embody the perfect blend of tradition and modernity.

The story of the Sandoval family and Valley Stream is one of resilience and serendipity.  Maine and Ilma, as young adults, found employment and happiness in the cool shadow of the Maya Mountains at Valley Stream farm.  They settled into a companiable life working the citrus orchards and tending the farm’s fruits and vegetables.  They grew their family right there in the humble field stone cottage and were happy to provide a more comfortable life with greater opportunities for their children.  When the property changed hands in 2018 the new owners were thrilled to hear that the Sandovals would stay on as caretakers for the expansive property.  The new owners of Valley Stream made it clear to them how much they loved the property and that the plan was to take the great work already done at Valley Stream and take things to a new level.  While I am sure the Sandovals were a bit skeptical of the grand plans the new owners had for the property, they were able to draw from their familiarity of the landscape and lend their insight to the plans and construction of Private Eden.  They saw the project through each phase; they were there every step of the way.

It appears to be pure kismet that the Sandoval children have an innate propensity for hospitality.  The family has seamlessly shifted their focus from the agriculture industry to luxury vacation services.  Caring and competent, they possess all the characteristics of world-class hosts, and it seems to be more than simply fortunateness that fate has brought such a remarkable villa to their very backyard.  From childhood, Micheal and Selvin each exhibited a gregarious nature.  Outgoing and kind, they made friends easily and enjoyed the company of a diverse mix of people.  They had to step out of their comfort zone to cultivate their new careers in hospitality and expand their skill set with formalized training in the tourism industry.  They both consistently receive rave reviews from guests commending their diligence, culinary and bartending skills, and of course, their invaluable local knowledge.  Collaboration and cooperation are hallmarks of the Sandoval family as they’ve been working together, in one capacity or another, their entire lives.

Valley Stream Private Eden couldn’t ask for a better crew; this isn’t just a team, it’s a family!