Ricky Martin Always Wanted To Be a Dad
08/22/2008 AT 01:45 PM EDT
"I know Ricky will be as good a papi as he is a dancer," says Rene Ruiz, a Miami based fashion designer and friend of Martin. "His kids will be livin' la vida loca!"
Another Miami friend agrees: "Ricky is a very giving person, and will make a wonderful parent. He has wanted his own children for quite a while."–
While Martin's fatherhood – via gestational surrogacy, his rep confirms – came as a surprise to most of the world, the singer told PEOPLE he planned to be a father long before the twins' arrival.
"I would love to have children of my own because I know I can offer them a good life," he said at a Latin Music festival in Miami in 2005. "I genuinely like kids."
Martin is known for his generosity to children's charities over the years through his Ricky Martin Foundation, ALAS, and the International Organization for Migration.
He also supported children affected by the devastation of Hurricane Katrina.