From Colorado to Copenhagen, Indonesia to Indianapolis, Boston to Bali, hotels across the globe are going green. You may feel less than great about racking up those air miles, but at least you can take comfort in knowing that once you reach your destination, the local environment is being treated with as much care and consideration as you are.
Strattons Hotel and Restaurant – Swaffham, Norfolk, England
Looking for a leisurely stay in the English countryside? Look no further than the Strattons Hotel in the town of Swaffham. A small, independent, family-run boutique hotel, Strattons boasts an award-winning (and positively chic) organic restaurant serving traditional English fare with a modern twist. This classic-meets-modern flair is maintained throughout the estate. With a decidedly old-world feel to the exterior, the rooms themselves are cool, contemporary and brimming with style. However, Strattons has the substance to match its considerable style. In fact, it was the first hotel in the UK to win the prestigious Queen’s Award for ‘Outstanding Environmental Performance.’ Just an hour outside London, it is the UK’s premier hotspot for green travel. For more information on Strattons Hotel, visit www.strattonshotel.com.
Spice Islands Beach Resort – St. George’s, Grenada
Want to spice up your life without sullying the environment? Book yourself a stay at the Spice Islands Beach Resort in Grenada. Home to the world’s most fabulous beaches, Grenada is nicknamed the Island of Spice not only because of its abundance of exotic spices like cinnamon, mace and cloves, but because of its ability to spice up any traveler’s stay. In addition to carefully maintaining its beautiful surroundings, the Spice Island Beach Resort continues a long tradition of green living. Boasting “non-chlorine swimming pools, home-grown herb gardens, natural composting, solar heating, desalination plants, energy-saving light bulbs and a close monitoring system on air conditioning usage,” the resort is run with environmental sustainability at the forefront. To book your stay at the luxuriously green Spice Island Beach Resort, visit www.spicebeachresort.com.
Devil’s Thumb Ranch – Granby, Colorado
Don’t let the name fool you; Devil’s Thumb Ranch is as (eco-) friendly as they come. A year-round, 5,000-acre, ranch-style resort and spa, Devil’s Thumb offers a wide array of outdoor activities, fine dining and wilderness recreation. And best of all, not only are you enjoying the environment, you are protecting it. The resort itself is kept warm using geothermal heat while much of the building materials used to construct it are recycled (some pieces dating back as far as the Civil War). Plus, all meals sold in the resort’s restaurants use organic, sustainable and locally-grown meat and veggies whenever possible. The EPA has even awarded the ranch the prestigious Award for Responsible Development & Historic Preservation. For more information on Devil’s Thumb Ranch, visit www.devilsthumbranch.com.
Voyages Longitude 131°, Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, Australia
Who says red is the color of romance? Nothing says “I love you” quite like a green vacation at the romantic Voyages Longitude 131° in Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park in Australia. Nestled near Ayers Rock, this five-star destination allows you to immerse yourself in the wilderness without losing any of the comforts you’ve come to expect from an ultra high-end resort. According to Eco-Australia, which certified the resort as an Advanced Eco-tourism site, 131° has proven to provide “ecologically sustainable tourism with a primary focus on experiencing natural areas that fosters environmental and cultural understanding, appreciation and conservation.” In addition to their dedication to both sustainability and sophistication, 131° offers everything from camping and caravanning to sunset canapés. Start the day atop the dunes experiencing an Australian sunrise while eating a traditional bushman’s breakfast cooked over an open fire, and end the evening sipping the finest wine beneath a canopy of glittering stars. For more information of Voyages Longitude 131°, visit www.longitude131.com.au.
From the countryside to the islands to the mountains to the desert, you don’t have to jeopardize the environment to enjoy it. For even more sustainable hotels, visit www.travelersdigest.com, keywords ‘green hotels.’