Best eco-friendly hotels in the world

Thanks to the Greta Thunbergs of this world, we’re all just a little more aware of our environment and the …

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Thanks to the Greta Thunbergs of this world, we’re all just a little more aware of our environment and the impact we have on it. Some hotels, however, have taken it a step further to bring us an eco-friendly encounter that’s positively delightful, never mind good for the environment.

Here we tally up our favourite eco-friendly hotels from around the world and let you in on just why these spots are worth a visit.

Svart, Norway: On top of the world

It is hard to imagine that an energy-positive hotel (one that will generate more energy than it consumes throughout its lifespan) is currently under construction in the Arctic Circle and set to open in 2021. Despite the hotel not being completed yet, numerous publications have already earmarked it as a bucket list location.

For die-hard glacier junkies who have not yet witnessed the Svartisen glacier, this hotel promises 360-degree vistas. Views also include the fjords and other picture-perfect natural scenes – plus, if you time it right, the aurora borealis.

The hotel’s design is based on the Powerhouse standard. Not only is the hotel destined to be energy-positive, but its construction will also have as little impact on the environment as possible.

Jumeirah Vittaveli, Maldives: 5-star luxury island living

It’s possible to set a high standard in terms of comfort and amenities and still be lauded as one of the best eco-friendly resorts on the planet. Jumeirah Vittaveli is located in the Maldives and offers guests a high-spec tropical holiday while still doing its part for the environment.

The five-star resort offers tranquil poolside views of the cerulean blue waters of the Maldives. Guests can also take part in activities such as fishing, snorkelling, diving and other watersports.

The resort takes corporate social responsibility seriously and has an on-site water purification and bottling system that saves it importing 70,000 plastic bottles per year. Fishing is also closely monitored to ensure that sustainability targets for the islands are not exceeded. A cleverly designed heat recovery system uses ‘excess’ heat from the resort’s generator to heat the water supply for the island: it takes 30-degree Celsius water right up to 50 degrees Celsius. Management at the resort are also conscious of the desirability of supporting local businesses and artisans.

Casa de las Olas, Mexico: Unrivalled sustainability in Mexico

Situated in a 1.3 million acre biosphere reserve in Tulum, Mexico, Casa de las Olas represents an ode to tranquil, eco-friendly relaxation.

The resort relies 100% on solar energy, and the structure is positioned to make the most of natural breezes, which reduces the need for air conditioning. In addition, underground and rainwater collections top up the water tanks to ensure that the water supply is constant yet sustainable. It’s noteworthy that – as if the resort didn’t already boast enough accolades – it also happens to be the only reviewed resort in Mexico certified to the platinum level for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED).

Not only is the resort environmentally conscious, but it also has a keen eye for detail where guests are concerned. It offers amenities such as yoga and wellness packages, and has gained numerous awards from TripAdvisor.

Tierra Patagonia, Chile: Down to the finest detail

Rarely does one see a building flow as naturally with the landscape as does Tierra Patagonia. This unrivalled architectural feat is about more than just aesthetics, though, as the environment was a major consideration during the development of this site. Before construction started on the project, the vegetation in the area was removed to a greenhouse; it was then reincorporated into the area on completion. The resort also supports local projects to limit unnecessary urbanization, and takes part in reforestation initiatives.

Thanks to Tierra Patagonia’s location within the Torres del Paine National Park, with its exhilarating mountain ranges, shimmering lakes and abundant wildlife, visitors can expect the opportunity to take part in a number of activities, such as cultural walks and hikes. There are also day trips to ranches to experience the local culture.

The resort itself offers a tranquil spa and wellness centre that aims to deliver rejuvenation right in the heart of nature. In fact, it doesn’t get much more natural than this.

Before you book your flights…

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