The environmental sustainability of a hotel is becoming a more and more important factor for guests these days as a younger generation begins to wield larger amounts of tourism dollars.
In addition to the economic implications, the world is also moving toward institutions and systems that emphasis caring for the planet in order to avoid a worsening climate crisis. For example, the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) has named 2017 as the year of sustainable tourism. To honor this declaration, the group has also set 17 goals and aspirations aimed at encouraging hotels to become sustainable.
Many luxury and boutique hotels across the globe have already made sustainability a priority. However, as in all things, some are more advanced in their efforts than others. To spark ideas and encourage efforts to create hotel properties that care for their surrounding environments, we’d like to highlight some examples of notable hotels that are also excelling in the field of sustainability.
Whitepod consists of several eco-friendly geodesic domes located on the snowy slopes of the Swiss Alps, all of which are equipped with wood-burning stoves to ensure that guests will be warm and cozy on the inside. All drinking water for these accomodations are drawn from a nearby spring, and to water saving devices are in place on the boilers, taps, and showers. In addition, when Whitepod was first built all structures were composed with a self-supporting structure to minimize the use of materials.
Campi ya Kanzi
Among the 283,000 acres of exotic wilderness in Kenya sits Campi ya Kanzi, a property built entirely from materials that had fallen naturally in the area nearby. This is not only a sustainable experience, but one that also provides an adventure while simultaneously enriching the local community. Guests at Campi ya Kanzi enjoy stunning views of Mount Kilimanjaro, and exciting access to some of the most beautiful animals in the world.
The Hix Island House
These modern concrete structures are located on a pristine Caribbean Island, which the operators work tirelessly to ensure remains unmolested. The water from the showers and basins flows down into nearby gardens, where it nurtures guava, bananas, papayas, and lemon plants. There are no televisions or phones in the Hix Island House, which provides a serene experience with the 13 acres of world-class nature that envelop and surround every guest.
It is, in fact, possible to provide both sustainability and luxury. The Jumeirah Vittaveli resort has shown that this is possible. Located in Maldives, it provides world-class luxury while honoring an ethos of deep compassion for the local environment. The hotel does this by using an “Eco Pure” system to treat sea water, converting it into fresh water for drinking. This water is also bottled in repurposed glass, which saves an estimated 50,000 plastic bottles each year.