Adele “Somjai” ~ Founder & Managing Director
Bounmi operates on the Mekong river in Luang Prabang, Laos and is managed by Adele (me). I arrived in Luang Prabang a week before Christmas 2013. It was the first time I laid eyes on the mighty Mekong.
Before the Mekong
I originally hail from Canada and have spent over eighteen years living abroad. Nine of those as a child growing up in SE Asia. My background and experience are extensive in the hospitality and tourism industries. Combined with over ten years in the professional diving and yachting industries, both in Canada and abroad. And, somewhere in-between I attained my commercial pilot’s license for single engine aircraft and learned floats are the way to go! What can I say…that’s the BC girl in me. Smiles!
Before moving to Laos over four years ago, the ocean was my life and the water my office. I spent my time teaching professional scuba diving, in-water guiding with humpbacks whales, operating tenders, managing boats, working on yachts and playing with the odd pod of dolphins, of course.
On the Mekong
Today, I go with the flow of the Mekong and have fallen in love with river life and the culture of Laos. I have experienced countless magical Mekong moments with guests, friends and family, on different styles of boats, and at different hours of the day and night. Wink Wink! Smile! I am reminded endlessly of the Mekong’s beauty and power.
Why I Love It
I’ve seasoned rainy windy days and relished in the sunny clear days. I’ve absorbed calm misty mornings and a myriad of magnificent sunsets. Beach campfires on the river under the stars with friends and music, and maybe a little dancing? Yes, please! I’ve basked in amazing afterglows during the twilight hour and watched a full moon rise over Luang Prabang, as the sun went down and the stars came out. Sweet!
Whether I’m working or playing, if I am on the Mekong, I am a happy girl. Smiles!
Captain Om hails from Ban Xiengmen, across the river in Chomphet. He has been working with Bounmi for two years and we are very grateful to have him. His friendly professionalism shines through his big smile and kind demeanor.
Om’s experience on the Mekong is practically his whole life. He has been operating boats on the river since a young age. Things were much different back then and I love hearing his stories. As, Om has captained large vessels traveling north to Houay Xay and several smaller vessels around LP. His attention to safety, paired with his keen navigational skills and customer service, are rivaled by few captains in and around Luang Prabang.
When Captain Om has spare time, he likes to be out fishing…of course. But, when it comes to planting and harvesting seasons, his “sticky” rice fields take precedent. A farmer by heart. Om is also a husband and father of two sweet young boys, with the same big bright eyes and smile as him.
Guides & Crew
At times, guests are accompanied by our licensed guides and assisted by our local support crew. All who have been carefully chosen for their professionalism, cultural knowledge, and fun characters.
We are grateful for their dedication in helping us to deliver amazing Mekong experiences to our guests.