Every little bit counts, right? For your next vacation, choose your destination and accommodation based on how they help Mother Earth. To get you started, here’s 4 of our favorite eco friendly hotels, some close to home, and some ideal for a tropical getaway.
The San Francisco W Hotel doesn’t see itself as just a hotel, but rather a luxury lifestyle destination. Not only are each of their rooms distinct and modern, they’re also involved in many efforts to gain the distinction of being an eco friendly hotel.
Focusing on minimizing waste by recycling, composting, and even providing alternatives to plastic water bottles for their guests, are only a few of the things that has earned the W their LEED certification from the U.S Green Building Council. With a goal to lower energy and water waste, in each room they use energy saving lighting and water preserving features. They also choose to use green products, and sustainable food and beverage options and the hotel promotes eco-friendly travel by providing preferred parking for environmentally friendly vehicles.
Not only is Villa Serenity an amazing, peaceful resort in Bali, it also has taken many steps to lessen their impact on the environment. Villa Serenity provides natural products to their guests, such as virgin coconut oil, soap and shampoo. As well, the resort supports alternate means of transport by offering bicycle rental. They also have at your disposal a salt-water pool, instead of a chemically harsh, chlorinated pool. Villa Serenity prides itself around eco-friendly principles – composting, recycling, and using chemical-free paints and cleaners.
Travel to Nicaragua and discover this beauty of a hotel: luxurious bungalows facing the ocean, Nicaraguan food, and warm people. Haciendas (made from wood and hand carved stones) at this eco lodge in Morgan’s Rock are set in the jungle, hanging 100 feet above the white sand beaches. The property includes a private nature reserve, shrimp farm, and a sugar processing plant that makes its own rum. Their sustainability efforts are mostly due to its large involvement with the local community. They buy local products for their restaurant, such as fresh vegetables. Additionally, electricity use is minimized by the lack of phones, air conditioning, or in- room Internet. Instead, Nicaragua Hotel attracts their guests through their immense infinity pool, private Ocotal beach, and the experience of the great outdoors. Morgan’s Rock is surrounded by a tropical rainforest that houses different types of wildlife including capuchin monkeys, and migrant birds. Several trees grow through cabin roofs, allowing them to stay alive and bringing nature that much closer to the guests.
This eco friendly hotel has a goal to satisfy all your needs, even while they maintain their green initiative. By using eco-friendly design in their floors (which feature carpets that are mostly recycled content) and having the art mounted on recycled tires, they’re well on their way to becoming an LEED certified establishment. All guest-rooms are equipped with energy efficient appliances, and they’ve even used low toxicity paints that ensure a safe indoor environment for guests and staff. Other green initiatives that Element Hotel provides in all their guest-rooms are the use of silverware and glassware instead of plastic, each room is supplied with recycling bins, and bath amenities are by dispenser only, to reduce waste.
by Vicky Hsu and Vanessa Hunter
This series on living fantastic for the holiday season is a collaboration between Greenster and the students of the Langara Publishing Program, who as a team produce Pacific Rim Magazine. Enjoy!