March 14, 2024 8 min read



With travellers becoming more conscious of their carbon footprint, there’s a rise of sustainable hotels with seriously good eco-friendly credentials. From reducing energy and water usage to sourcing locally grown food, these eco-friendly hotels offer a responsible and authentic travel experience. Here are some of our favourites across the globe.



1. Shinta Mani Wild, Cambodia

Nestled in the heart of the Cambodian jungle, Shinta Mani Wild is not just a luxurious retreat, but a model of sustainability and conservation. This unique and eco-friendly resort demonstrates that luxury travel and the environment can coexist harmoniously. Located within the remote and biodiverse Cardamom Mountains, one of Southeast Asia's last remaining wilderness areas, the resort is dedicated to preserving this pristine ecosystem by working closely with local communities. It employs local staff, helping to protect the region's rich biodiversity and also collaborates with Wildlife Alliance, an organisation that focuses on wildlife protection and forest conservation. The resort uses sustainable materials such as locally sourced bamboo and reclaimed wood to construct its exquisite luxury tents and public areas and the buildings are also elevated on stilts, reducing their footprint and allowing natural water flow to continue uninterrupted. The resort acts as a sanctuary for rescued animals, such as elephants and gibbons, providing care, rehabilitation, and protection. Guests have the opportunity to engage in educational wildlife experiences and learn about the challenges facing these animals and the importance of conserving their natural habitats. The resort demonstrates that responsible tourism can coexist with unparalleled luxury.


2. Playa Viva, Mexico

Located on the pristine coast of Mexico, this hidden gem not only promises a luxurious tropical getaway but also unspoiled beauty and a commitment to sustainability. The eco-luxury resort aims to harmonise nature, community and culture and places a strong emphasis on preserving its natural surroundings by actively engaging in reforestation projects, mangrove restoration and protecting turtle nesting grounds. The resort grows its own organic fruits and vegetables and prioritises local and seasonal ingredients, by supporting local farmers – reducing the carbon emissions associated with food transportation. Playa Viva collaborates with nearby villages to provide employment opportunities and economic development, and also invests in educational programs, infrastructure improvements, and healthcare initiatives to empower the local community, ensuring a mutually beneficial relationship between visitors and the destination. Exemplifying the perfect blend of luxury and sustainability, travellers can enjoy an unforgettable holiday while supporting a destination positively.


3. The Brando, French Polynesia

This luxury oasis is nestled in the heart of French Polynesia on the private atoll of Tetiaroa and showcases its unwavering dedication to environmental conservations. Standing as a shining example of responsible luxury, from marine conservation to sustainable food practices, the resort relyiES entirely on renewable energy sources, harnessing the power of the sun and utilising solar panels for electricity generation, committing to the goal of minimising its carbon footprint while providing a world-class experience for guests. With a location in the pristine waters of Tetiaroa, The Brando recognises the importance of protecting the fragile marine ecosystems, so collaborates with local experts and researchers to actively preserve the surrounding coral reefs and marine life, therefore encouraging guests to participate in educational snorkelling and diving excursions. Sustainability takes centre stage when it comes to food, committing to sourcing its produce locally by working closely with local farmers and fishermen, and additionally boasts its own organic garden on the island that celebrates the flavours of French Polynesia. This Polynesian paradise is the island getaway of dreams.


4. Forestis, Dolomites, Italy

This alpine retreat is situated in the breath-taking Dolomite Mountains of Italy and offers a haven of tranquillity that not only provides a serene escape for visitors but also showcases its deep commitment to sustainability. Standing out as a leading example of responsible tourism in the alpine region, the retreat’s architecture and design harmoniously integrates with the surrounding landscape and uses energy efficient innovative technologies to minimise its carbon footprint. True to its name, Forestis places great importance on forest conservation and actively engages in reforestation projects, protecting the biodiversity of the surrounding forests. The bounties of the surrounding region are celebrated with organic and locally-sourced produce, so guests can savour delicious dishes while knowing they are contributing to the preservation of local agriculture.Forestis also nurtures the well-being of its guests through its sustainable spa practices, the holistic treatments utilising natural and organic products toensure both the well-being of guests and the preservation of the environment. The surrounding mountain air and stunning vistas further enhance the rejuvenating experience, providing a true sense of escape and tranquillity.


5. Bambu Indah, Bali

At harmony with nature, Bambu Indah is a remarkable boutique resort located in Ubud on the lush island of Bali with a deep commitment to sustainability. This eco resort has many initiatives in place that highlight its dedication to environmental conservation and responsible tourism, from solar panels generating a renewable energy to power the resorts amenities to a breathtaking eco-friendly infrastructure that naturally blends in with its surroundings.Balinese culture is celebrated through organic and locally sourced cuisine with ingredients which is grown in their organic garden and provides a one-of-a-kind Indonesian dining experience, and rainwater is harvested to supply outdoor showers and swimming pools to help facilitate the fresh water shortage.The resort provides its guests with a harmonious and luxurious stay amongst nature while sharing awareness about environmental conservation.


6. Svart Hotel, Norway

Known as the world’s first energy-positive hotel, this sustainable marvel in Norway is located close to the Svartisen glacier in the Arctic Circle. Making more energy than it uses, its eco-friendly philosophy was motivated by the desire to build a sustainable site in a location still largely untouched by tourism and was crafted with the environment in mind. Ithas a unique, black architectural structure that cannot be found anywhere else in the world and a green roof which has been designed to consume an estimated 85% less energy than traditional hotels, taking advantage of the natural sunlight and heat and therefore helping to save energy costs and reduce carbon emissions. The hotels restaurant uses locally sourced food items to reduce the environmental impact of food transportation, and food waste in the hotel is collected, composted, and used to fertilise the hotel garden. This pioneering landmark is not just beautiful and sustainable; it also serves as a source of inspiration for other tourism sites. Expect luxury, top-notch amenities and unbeatable views, all while staying green.


7. Soneva Fushi, Maldives

This ultimate resort in theMaldives is an unparalleled paradise of barefoot luxury, in a sustainable ecosystem of lush jungle, pristine beaches and crystalline waters. The founders of Soneva Fushi, Sonu and Eva Shivdasani, believe that luxury and sustainability are not mutually exclusive. The resorts philosophy is founded on the three core principles of sustainability, calledSLOW LIFE” – Sustainable, Local,Organic, Wellness Learning, Inspiring, Fun and Experiences. The resorts building design is both innovative and effective in minimising environmental impact. All the villas are made from sustainable and locally-sourced materials such as palm fronds and bamboo and a wide range of measures to reduce energy and water consumption, including solar panels, wind turbines, and rainwater harvesting systems, have been implemented. The resort also grows its own organic vegetables, fruits and herbs in its garden, which is irrigated with recycled water. The resorts restaurants serve locally sourced seafood and vegetables, thereby promoting local farmers and reducing the carbon footprint of food transportation. This natural treasure nestled in the Baa Atoll UNESCO Biosphere Reserve is also a pioneer in marine conservation and coral rehabilitation.


8. The Alpina Gstaad, Switzerland

Sustainability is at the peak of luxury at thispicturesque Swiss Alps hotel. With its stunning architectural design and eco-friendly practices, this hotel serves as a beacon for environmentally conscious travellers seeking a luxurious yet sustainable experience. Constructed using locally sourced materials, the wood and stone infrastructure not only blends in with the surrounding environment but also contributes to the region's architectural heritage. The hotel's innovative facade is designed to maximise natural light while minimising energy consumption and large windows allow ample sunlight to fill the interior space, reducing the need for artificial lighting and creating a warm and inviting atmosphere for guests. As well asimplementing various energy-efficient measures, water conservation is also a key focus for The Alpina Gstaad and promotes responsible water usage through educational initiatives, empowering guests to become stewards of the environment. Setting a high standard for the hospitality industry through both Swiss luxury and consciousness,The Alpina Gstaad is the perfect alpine escape for the disconcerting traveller.


9. 1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge, New York

Lying along the iconic Brooklyn Bridge in New York, you’ll feel at one with nature in the heart of the bustling metropolis. With its stunning waterfront views and eco-conscious practices, the 1 Hotel has set a new standard for sustainable hospitality in the city that never sleeps. The hotel's impressive architectural design incorporates reclaimed materials, such as wood salvaged from old buildings and repurposed industrial materials, giving it a rustic yet sophisticated charm. Natural light floods the interior through large windows and creates a warm, inviting ambiance for guests. Each room is furnished with organic mattresses, bedding made from sustainable materials, and in-room recycling bins, encouraging guests to participate in waste reduction efforts. The hotel has eliminated single-use plastic bottles and replaced them with filtered water stations throughout the property – this initiative alone saving thousands of plastic bottles from entering landfills. Their commitment to sustainability extends to its dining establishments, with a farm-to-table concept at at the core of the hotel's culinary offerings. Ingredients are sourced from local farmers and producers and the hotel's rooftop hosts a thriving garden producing herbs and vegetables used in the hotel's restaurants, providing freshness and quality for its guests. Their commitment to sustainability goes well beyond its walls,participating in local community initiatives and partnering with environmental organisations to drive positive change within the city and beyond, as well as offering educational programs and experiences to inspire guests to adopt sustainable practices beyond their stay.


10. El Nido Resorts, Philippines

El Nido Resorts is a group of luxurious island getaways in the stunning archipelago of the Philippines that go above and beyond in their commitment to sustainability. With a focus on preserving the natural beauty of the surrounding environment and supporting local communities, El Nido has become a shining example of sustainable tourism in the region. At the heart of El Nido Resorts’ sustainability efforts is the protection and preservation of the marine ecosystems in the area. They actively collaborate with local organisations and government agencies to implement responsible fishing practices, including the establishment of marine protected areas. These protected areas not only help preserve the diverse marine life but also promote sustainable fishing practices, ensuring a healthy ocean for generations to come. Coral reef conservation is also prioritised and guests have theopportunity for guided snorkelling or diving experiences that promote responsible interactions with marine life. Supporting and empowering the local communities are important to El Nido, by the hiring of local staff and working closely with farmers and fishermen, sourcing their ingredients for the resorts' restaurants and promoting local agriculture and sustainable fishing practices. Experience guilt-free luxury in unbeatable tropical biodiversity at the Philippinesgreenest.