Taina sadly passed away in June 2012 ..... she is greatly missed but will be remembered for her joy of life and her great generosity and love. Here is her bio .... Taina Taufalele grew up on ‘Eua. In the late 1970’s she went to Nuku’alofa and began work in the hospitality industry. In 1979, Taina married her first husband (from Germany) and went to live in his country. The wedding was held at the time on ‘Eua with over 500 guests (including her husband’s family from Europe). Michael is Taina's son from her first marriage. On returning to ‘Eua in 1998, she started building Taina’s Place which opened a year later. The Maxi Disco on ‘Eua, which Taina also started, took its name from her pet cat in Germany! Taina met her second husband Tei on the ‘Eua ferry in the 1990s and they had 4 children together (Benny, Lui, Luisa and Chrissy).
Taina had plenty of opportunity to practise her fluent German at Taina's Place, as she had many surprised visitors from Germany, Switzerland and Austria. Looking after visitors from all around the world, preparing nice flowers and making delicious food was what Taina simply loved doing ....
About Taina's Children
Taina’s eldest son is Michael who is currently living in Hawaii. He is an artist who carves in wood. Some decent chunks of wood have actually been specially sent to him in Hawai'i from Tonga for him to apply is art on! His style is a mix of real Tongan with a touch of European (his father is German!)
Tei and Taina’s four children are Benny, Lui, Luisa and Chrissy. Taina said she was very happy that they are able to grow up in an environment where they can meet people (sometimes with their own children) from all around the world. They love hearing stories from different cultures to their own. Taina was also happy her children have a ‘natural life’ on ‘Eua. And that because the village community spirit is so strong, it’s a safe and healthy place for her children to live. They enjoy hiking, bike riding, horse riding, swimming and fishing. They help out at Taina's Place with domestic duties. They enjoy popular Tongan music and they just love chocolate!
Taina with one of her guests who is a movie star from Japan.
Meet Tei (with daughter Chrissy). Tei, hails originally from the Vava’u group in northern Tonga. As a young man he trained to become a seaman in Nuku’alofa. He has spent most of his life now on boats. He has travelled all around the Pacific for months at a time on large fishing vessels. A master seaman, he is now captain of the blue ferry that runs to ‘Eua (so look out for him when you come!).He also regularly goes reef fishing and likes to attend local evening kava parties. Just ask, and you could join him for fishing and for a kava party experience!
Fe'ao, Jasmine and Tasha (Taina's nieces) have worked at Taina's Place for several years and were trained in hospitality services by Taina.
Always ready with a smile, and happy to give you insights into the 'Euan way of life, you'll really enjoy having them look after you during your stay!
Photo Gallery: Taina & Family
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There are four core values that define Tongan people and they are: (fe’apa’apa’aki) mutual respect; (feveitokai’aki) sharing, cooperating and fulfillment of mutual obligations; (lototoo) humility and generosity, and (tauhi vaha’a) loyalty and commitment.
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