Born in the Philippines and living in the US for most of her life, Maryles V. Casto is a successful leader, investor, and entrepreneur.
From the beginning, Maryles loved travel and the benefits it provided. It connects people. It opens worlds. It creates new and novel experiences.
“I have yet to see a problem where the best solution is to hide or be ignorant. It is only through contact with other cultures and peoples, and in their contact with us, that we can hope to bridge the divide between people of the world. Fear withers upon exposure to the new and novel. Travel to fight the fear within yourself and others.”
In 1974, Maryles took her passion for travel to the next level by founding what would become one of the largest, most respected, privately owned travel management companies in Silicon Valley. Drawing from her early experience as a manager of in-flight services for Philippine Airlines, Maryles founded Casto Travel, a different type of travel company. Casto Travel primarily provided corporate and leisure travel management, but she also had the insight and the courage to create business units that weren’t common in the industry. She focused on Silicon Valley before it was called Silicon Valley. Maryles created an in-house visa/passport team to better support the unique global travel needs of those in Silicon Valley, and delivered best in class service that went beyond expectations.
Keeping in mind that she needs a team to make the company successful, Maryles not only created a mission and a set of values to guide her company, she also fostered a spirit of family that resulted in high retention rates.
Maryles extended Casto Travel’s operations into the APAC region, where she oversaw all operations and client management as well as successfully implementing a fulfillment service team that even her toughest competitors wanted to be a part of.
After over 40 years of traversing through the ebbs and flows of the travel industry and changes in Silicon Valley, Maryles sold Casto Travel to Flight Centre, one of the worlds largest travel companies. She continues to own and run Casto Travel Philippines, providing knowledge, insight and inspiration in several capacities, including client interactions, organizing exclusive journeys, and steering the company with her leadership and strategic vision.
Under her leadership, Casto Travel had been ranked in the Top 100 Fastest Growing Businesses in both Silicon Valley and San Francisco and has won numerous entrepreneurial and service awards. Maryles was appointed as a member of the Presidential Delegation to attend the inauguration of President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo of the Philippines in 2004. In May 2006, Silicon Valley Business Journal ranked Casto Travel second in revenues among Silicon Valley Women-Owned Businesses. In 2014, as a result of her service and commitment to the community, Maryles received the Distinguished Citizen Award from the Silicon Valley Boy Scouts of America.
Maryles has been active in civic, philanthropic, and industry organizations over the course of her career. She currently serves on the board of directors for Silicon Valley Creates, The New Ballet – San Jose and the Commonwealth Club of California (at one point serving as board chair). She recently served on the El Camino Hospital Foundation, as International Chair on the Committee of 200 and is a founding member of the International Women’s Forum – Northern California (serving on their board in 2017).
In 2021, Maryles authored her first book: A Hole In The Clouds