Green is serene in the travel industry right now. Flight companies worldwide are making a conscious effort to provide cleaner operations that benefit the environment and help improve the climate. And websites like Sustainable Travel offer plenty of resources to help holidaymakers understand topics like carbon footprints and how to protect and conserve the planet.
Hotels are getting in on the act, too. An increasing number of brands are building eco-friendly resorts designed to offer a five-star experience while being environmentally sustainable. So we’ve put a list of the best green hotels together, along with their efforts to be eco friendly.
But first… what is sustainable travel?
The World Tourism Organization refers to sustainable travel as the “development which meets the needs of present tourists and host regions while protecting and enhancing opportunity for the future”. It looks to preserve cultural integrity, biological diversity and create an ecological process.
Sustainable travel is essentially trying to find a way to maintain tourism in the long term without negatively affecting natural and cultural environments. The goal involves minimising the negative impacts of tourism and boosting the areas where travel takes place.
Aeroplanes have become the primary focus of more environmentally friendly travel, but hotels have their part to play too. And a green hotel usually displays specific characteristics:
- Dependence on the natural environment
- Ecological sustainability
- Proven contribution to conservation
- Provision of environmental training programs
- Incorporation of cultural considerations
- Provision of an economic return to the local community
Here are some of our favourites!
The best green hotels in the world
1) Pikaia Lodge, Ecuador 🇪🇨
The Galapagos Islands are one of the most impressive landmarks in the world and are full of natural biodiverse beauty. So it makes sense that one of the best green hotels is located in Ecuador, the home of the Galapagos Islands. Pikaia Lodge is a carbon-neutral property with alternative energy resources and an outstanding social responsibility program.
Guests will feel like they’re doing their part for the environment, too, by using water heated through the use of solar panels. The hotel also only uses biodegradable cleaning products and was constructed with eco-friendly and recyclable materials. Even the furniture and decor are environmentally friendly: they’re made from sustainable, agro-cultivated teak and bamboo wood found in Ecuador.
2) Waldorf Astoria, USA 🇺🇸
What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas, but we reckon the Waldorf Astoria might want to shout about its sustainability from the rooftops. As far as luxury goes, Waldorf Astoria has it all with five-star rooms and amenities. But it’s the green solutions that really stand out at this Vegas retreat.
Tuck into an organic cuisine and make use of an energy-saving lighting system. All the cleaning products are environmentally friendly, and the hotel’s LEED® Gold certification means this is a certified stylish green hotel. Viva sustainability!
3) Svart, Norway 🇳🇴
Svart is located above a polar circle and the world’s first hotel built after the energy positive Powerhouse standard. Over the course of its lifetime, Svart aims to generate more energy than it uses, making it one of the best green hotels in the world.
Everything from the raw materials used during construction to the daily operation of Svart has been carefully curated with the environment in mind. It features a circular form that extends from the shoreline by the foot of the Svartisen glacier and into the waters of the Arctic fjord. In other words, it’s jaw-droppingly beautiful.
4) Camp Glenorchy, New Zealand 🇳🇿
Welcome to New Zealand’s first net-zero energy hotel, a five-star place to stay where the environment is always at the top of the agenda. Camp Glenorchy was listed as one of TIME Magazine’s “World’s Greatest Places”, and was built according to the Living Building Challenge, which represents the most thorough sustainability standards in the world.
Neatly nestled in beautiful local surroundings, Camp Glenorchy uses 50% less energy and water than similar resorts. It also has earth-friendly amenities like a solar garden, solar panels, smart lighting and an onsite water and energy management system designed to benefit the environment.
5) Whitepod, Switzerland 🇨🇭
Just an hour-and-a-half away from Geneva, Whitepod offers a luxury camping experience for environmentally conscious travellers. Guests enjoy a PVC dome where they can embrace local nature. Even better – each dome matches the season, whether it’s covered in white to reflect the snow-capped mountains in the winter or green camouflage to minimise the visual impact of the lush greens hills of the Swiss countryside.
Staying at Whitepod is an experience, and it takes 20 minutes just to get to your dome from the reception area. Everything is environmentally friendly here, and you can enjoy a range of amenities, including tennis, badminton, hikes and a sauna.
6) The Brando, French Polynesia 🇵🇫
If The Brando is good enough for the Obamas, then it’s good enough for us. This eco-friendly hotel is located in the French Polynesia and offers a little slice of luxury for its guests. Named after Marlon Brando, the famous actor who loved the island, The Brando is all about the earth-minded traveller.
It holds one of the world’s most innovative and low-impact air-con facilities, using deep-sea ocean water sourced 3,000ft below the Tahitian shallows. The air-con system is so good that it reduces energy demands by as much as 80 per cent.
7) The Green House, UK 🇬🇧
The name is a giveaway, but The Green House is one of the UK’s most environmentally friendly hotels. Visitors come here because of its commitment to sustainability, which is achieved with elements like fire-retardant wool carpets and lots of local sourcing.
Set in a Grade II-listed Victorian villa near Bournemouth, The Green House even has sustainable beekeeping on the roof and a Green Guide, which lists all of the hotel’s impressive credentials about how it’s friendly to the environment.
The number of eco-friendly hotels in the world is increasing rapidly, which is excellent news for the environment and travellers who want to do their part. Does a green hotel holiday appeal to you? Why not use Fly Now Pay Later to book your dream eco getaway by booking now and paying later and enjoying more financial freedom with your next trip.