The sexiest ecolodges around the world right now – Cond Nast Traveller India – The Last Word in Travel

Sustainable is a label we see splashed everywhere, from denim jeans and organic cosmetics to investments and software. Once a buzzkill of a buzzword to luxury travellers, hearing that a hotel was eco suggested there might be some scrimping on style and comfort. Thankfully, a new generation of switched-on hoteliers and inspired hospitality brands are making it sexy to be more responsible. Its time to reclassify what luxury means, when it comes to where we rest our heads on a feel-good holiday

Opulent and over-the-top are old hat when it comes to adventuring. Better to splash out on once-in-a-lifetime vacations that have a positive social and environmental impact. All the better if its a ger in the Gobi Desertthats the name for these traditional round yurts covered with felt. This lodge is one for true nomads, not those of the digital variety, as its totally off-grid. It has special practices in place to make the most of the little water it has. Its also in cahoots with scientific research and wildlife monitoring programmes to give back to the Gobi. (Website; doubles from MNT21,50,000 or Rs58,200)

Its rare desert island retreats manage to be so ridiculously spoiling and sybaritic and yet so sensitive to sustainability. No wonder the A-listers love it. It may be the panoramas of the lagoon here, northeast of Tahiti, that are likely to have you swooning, but the scientific smarts of the hotels air-conditioning system are also seductive. At this paradise private-island resort, the 35 carbon-neutral beachfront villas flaunt The Brandos own seawater-cooled inventionpowered by sun rays and coconut oil, SWAC is their cunning AC system. (Website; doubles from XPF4,42,000 or Rs2,93,970 for two nights)

Biodiversity is the siren call of this remarkable ecolodge. Not just a pretty 500-hectare property, its looks and cuisine entice Cape Towns cognoscenti to dine herethough we must underline that the sustainability dashboard of this Long Run member matches function to form and flavour in a truly ingenious way. Its supply chain is carefully monitored and kept to a 50-km radius; free-range piggies on its farm snaffle up organic kitchen waste; and under the lodges Growing the Future programme, fruit and veggies are bought directly from local women. (Website; doubles from ZAR11,500 or Rs55,000)

Smell fragrances free of chemicals; taste organic flavours lovingly cultivated by hand; touch furnishings crafted by artisans, not from a factory. Admire the star-filled skies above from bed through retractable roofs or from your over-the-water swing seat. Then salute the waste and water-filtration initiatives behind the scenes that ensure this is pure guilt-free luxury. Sonu Shivdasanis three barefoot-luxury resorts win awards for their architecture and design, unrivalled guest experiences as well as all that they do to preserve their Maldivian and Thai environments. (Website; doubles from MVR52,500 or Rs2,46,000)

Its taken years to get this Georgian manor house ready for visitors, but it was worth the wait. The interiors are perfection, and the gardens are a lesson in long-sighted conservation. Almost every morsel in either of the refined dining rooms here is sourced from its biodynamic farm. What makes this estate so marvellous is its reverence for nature and the fact that its media-shy billionaire owner never scrimps on the back-of-house eco-activity. The biomass, advanced permaculture system, aerobic digester and thousands of litres of water sourced from their own borehole attest to this. (Website; doubles from 400 or Rs35,000)

This ruler-straight white rectangle cuts a strong silhouette on the edge of Canadas easternmost shoreline. Jutting over the Atlantic coast, with 29 rooms and five art studios, the inn is in fact a change-making social enterprise. Its build had everything as locally sourced as possible. Finding that the only nails that suited its needs were from China, it made its own. The steel frame of the wooden-clad construction is insulated to the max; rainwater is collected for the toilets; and wood-fired boilers and solar panels power the hot water and underfloor heating. (Website; doubles from CAD2,000 or Rs1,10,000)

The 26-room, solar-powered property lies in the south-western edge of the mountainous Dana Biosphere Reserve in Wadi Feynan. A true ecolodge, its design riffs on the caravanserais of the Middle Easts ancient trading days. Sip mint tea with Bedouin people, or shadow a shepherd for the day. A number of hotels promise authentic experiences, but few deliver them with such integrity. Sweeping rooftop views of the desert dont come as dramatic as in this former copper-mining valley. Theres no booze for sundowners, but guests can bring their own. As the fridges run on solar power, it has limited supply and forgoes serving meat. (Website; doubles from JOD145 or Rs15,000)

From manta rays to a kaleidoscopic array of corals, rare underwater species make these islands as compelling as can be for thrill-seeking divers and wildlife adventurers. This archipelago seems remote, but the 20 overwater villas fashioned from driftwood and fallen branches make the journey worth it. The resort raised some US$200,000 in 2018 through donations from guests and working with private businesses and like-minded partners from the scuba- diving industry. The funds went towards Misools work to protect the marine environment and communities of Raja Ampat. (Website; doubles from IDR22,75,000 or Rs12,000)

Get intimate with nature at any of the 10 thatched, stand-alone cabins in this untamed jungle near Gal Oya National Park. The luxury here is that your stay doesnt just insist you switch off (theres no wifi or cell phone reception)time here ensures you disconnect and just enjoy being in Sri Lankas wilderness. Leaving an especially good taste is the fact that every meal is made from just-plucked ingredients grown within grasp. Take hikes up Monkey Mountain and boat safaris along the Senanayake Samudra reservoir, or meet members of the Vedda tribe before their original way of life disappears. (Website; doubles from LKR45,500 or Rs19,000)

This breezy, open-to-the-elements, bamboo resort close to Singapore in the South China Sea is as sexy as it is environmentally conscious. On this adults-only island lodge, whisper sweet nothings to each other as you overlook jungle and ocean from your private poolthe only audience you are likely to have is a pair of hornbills. Its but a short stumble to the restaurant by the waters edge where the menu showcases ingredients from the retreats own farm. Plus you know that a percentage of your room rate is going towards The Island Foundations community-based projects that support education, healthcare and ethical practices. (Website; doubles from IDR48,50,000 or Rs25,000)

When architect Nick Troubetzkoy first conjured up this hotel in 2007, he probably didnt shout about having sustainable in his vernacular. After remodelling Anse Chastanet in St Lucia into an eco resort in the 1970s, amid 600 acres of nature overlooking the Caribbean, it was natural to take his new build to the next level. The visionary, enthralled by St Lucias landscapes and the warmth of its people, dispensed with as many walls, windows and doors as possible when creating his stay. Ruby, emerald, amber and turquoise tiling gives each room its own identity, and walkways lend a futuristic feel. (Website; doubles from XCD3,150 or Rs85,000)

Sister to Lake Gardas chi-chi spa retreat, this new stay is just outside Pinzolos Madonna di Campiglio ski resort. Its impressive to see bio-architecture exist in such harmony with the wooded mountain landscape. As appealing in summer as in the snowy season, hiking, biking and climbing make five-star Lefay Dolomiti a year-round wellness destination. Its rare to be able to give the assurance that advanced spa, detox and well-being programmesfrom osteopathy to Ayurvedaare not just good for you but also the wider world, but having hosts so committed to using renewable energy sources makes that possible. (Website; doubles from 400 or Rs32,000)

Heaven-sent for Instagram, this rustic resort feels like an honourable tribute to its coastal environment. From the tile-roofed casitas to thatched suites and tree houses, you can sense it has sourced all materials from within arms reach. On the Pacific Coast of Mexico, its set in 200 wildlife-rich acres spanning an Aztec archaeological site, a turtle sanctuary as well as a forest and mangrove ecosystem. Well-being is considered not just in terms of the planet as a whole but for you as an individual, thanks to nutritious, organic, veg-heavy dining and yoga and meditation classes. (Website; doubles from MXN5,500 or Rs20,000)

City hotels usually struggle to hold their heads up high when it comes to bragging about eco creds. But this glossy new chain does lots to earn its swagger. Helping them fly that green flag by Brooklyn Bridge Park is a 25ft living wall of figs and ferns in the lobby, reclaimed materials that dominate the interiors and wind-powered electricity. Touches such as an in-room triple-filtered drinking water tap and wittily labelled wooden amenities will woo suckers for sustainability, but the East River views and poster-perfect panoramas of that iconic iron bridgeparticularly from the pool-enhanced 10th-floor rooftophas even the least eco-conscious racing to stay. (Website. com; doubles from US$399 or Rs29,000)

A lot goes into making its six detached ocean-view villas, spa and restaurant kind to both people and place. Since teak is fast-growing and doesnt require wood lacquer or chemicals, it was the preferred building material. The hotel eschewed plastic since the start, always hired locally and supports a number of micro businesses from the area. Its greenhouse provides organic micro greens, kale, peppers, basil and mint and operates the Japanese Takakura composting system. It also donates to an NGO that helped a school in Uvita with new classrooms, teaching material and supplies. (Website; doubles from CRC4,00,000 or Rs50,000)

Read more:

The sexiest ecolodges around the world right now - Cond Nast Traveller India - The Last Word in Travel

Related Post

Comments are closed.