Dreary January has already got us looking further ahead to (warmer) breaks to come, but just as we detox ourselves this time of year, why not swap your traditional escape for an eco-friendly getaway instead? With all the luxury amenities you would expect from your favourite resort, going eco doesn't mean comprimising on luxury. With exquisite views, sleek interiors and rejuvenating pool and gyms, by picking a resort that prides itself on sustainability, you can still enjoy your vacation but with a conscious, safe in the knowledge you're not doing damage to the planet while you relax and sip your well-earned cocktail.
Check out our pick of the best eco-friendly resorts to inspire you to go green. >>
This is the sixth property in the Inkaterra portfolio, who also has existing luxury properties in the Amazon rainforest, the Sacred Valley of the Incas, Machu Picchu and the city of Cusco. The hotel may be dedicated to eco and sustainable tourism, but luxury is by no means compromised. Drawing inspiration from the beautiful surrounding landscapes, the properties blend traditional textiles and ancient artefacts, with carefully considered architecture. Originally designed as a location to train Inkaterra’s Explorer Guides, the Field Station now welcomes eco-conscious travellers, families, researchers, volunteers and students from around the world. The Field Station “Work House” will house an Eco Centre, designed to educate guests on the various projects and excursions taking place, as well as a laboratory used for the examination of soil and the study of flora and fauna. Guests can take part in wildlife-focused outings, ranging from the Inkaterra Canopy Walkway, suspended high above the forest floor, to boat trips and a visit to the Gamitana Model Farm, where ITA works with local communities, so can really get in amongst the eco action.
Sadly like much of the world, the Philippine oceans are up against the severe threats of over-fishing, mass tourism, and plastic waste and toxic product pollution, but trying to make a difference to that is the Nautilus Eco-Resort project, which is currently in the works. Ethical and eco-friendly, this Eco-Resort promises to the host populations and travellers to be actively involved with engineers, scientists, and ecologists in the protection of the environment that it wants to discover. While upgrading the natural heritage and culture, this 'zero-emission, zero-waste, zero-poverty' project will be 100% built from reused and/or recycled materials from the archipelago. The unusual shell-shaped hotels and the rotating apartment towers wind up along two golden spirals respecting the Fibonacci sequence, a symbol of balance and harmony - it's fair to say this hotel will sure look good while doing good.
There are already a host of reasons to visit Sri Lanka: the safari, the views, the food - but now it's added a stunning, sustainably minded five star safari eco-resort to it's portfolio too. Situated just next door to the Yala National Park, Resplendent Ceylon’s latest creation, Wild Coast Tented Lodge, overlooks the blue waters of the Indian Ocean and is made completely of bamboo; seamlessly blending in with the distinctive rock formations of Yala. The uniquely shaped tents, known as 'Cocoons & Urchins', offer state-of-the art amenities including air-conditioning and authentic Sri Lankan cuisine. The Cocoon suite has it's own plunge pool, while a further sixteen Cocoons are dotted around watering holes designed to attract a variety of birdlife and amphibians, so be sure to pack your binoculars. This is glamping as you've never seen it before.
This luxury complex was designed by Boston-based architect Roberto de Oliveira Castro, and offers four and five-bedroom villas that are completely carbon neutral. Following in the (carbon neutral) footsteps of their one bedroom solar cottages, each of the new villas are fitted with rooftop solar panels, significantly reducing their energy consumption and carbon emissions.The villas were built using locally-sourced materials and are powered solely by a combination of solar and hydro-electricity. But you better believe that doesn't compromise on the incredible views of serene rolling mountains and spectacular sunsets you'd expect. If you really fancy pushing the boat out, opt for a villa with a private waterfront plunge pool for a personal dip on your doorstep. What’s more, any carbon emission from your villa is offset by trees grown right here in Belize - now that’s what I call smart living.
Shinta Mani Wild is the brainchild of resort designer and owner Bill Bensley, which he describes as a 'utopia of sustainability'. This luxury resort sits beside 1.5 kilometers of stunning river and waterfalls and is his most ambitious project to date. Kitsch custom designed tents are perched over the swift moving waters and waterfalls, providing beautiful views unlike any other resort in Asia. To the southeast of this private sanctuary, guests are able to spend a day exploring the untrammeled waterways of South East Asia’s last wild estuarine ecosystem aboard one of Shinta Mani Wild’s private, fully-equipped luxury expedition boats; while to the north, guests can accompany rangers and researchers as they check camera traps and study the wild forests and their inhabitants. There's never been such a unique opportunity to explore these untamed lands with the people who know them like the back of their hands.
Opening Summer 2018