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Sustainable Tourism

25 February 2010 3 Comments

Environmentally sustainable, socially responsible and boho-chic. The casually elegant eco-lodges and resorts featured in this line-up are good for the planet, support local communities and offer romantic rainforest experiences year-round.

Hotel Highlights: With luxe accommodations and a spa, The Lodge at Chaa Creek provides pampering par excellence — along with a slew of high-octane activities (think horseback riding, river rafting and canopy explorations). Sustainability Highlight: One-hundred percent of lodge employees are local community members.

Hotel Highlights: For an authentic taste of Guatemalan customs, culture and cuisine, book a trip for two to the Takalik Maya Lodge. Guests at the cozy bed and breakfast receive three complementary meals a day and can choose from a number of activities, including horseback riding, bird watching and arts and crafts. Sustainability Highlight: The hotel boasts 10 acres (four hectares) of protected natural forest reserves, which provide habitat for numerous native species.

Hotel Highlights: With private cabins in the heart of the Nicaraguan jungle, Sábalos Lodge is a dream for ecotourists. Overlooking the San Juan River, the eco-lodge offers basic comforts in the midst of natural wonders, including abundant plant life, migratory animals, birds and an assortment of reptiles. Sustainability Highlight: Committed to ensuring the health of the local community, the lodge donates medical supplies and funds to the San Juan hospital.

Hotel Highlights: Located on a private farm and bordering the Pacific Ocean, Morgan’s Rock is a luxury location where guests are invited to embrace their natural surroundings and unwind without the distractions of city life. For couples who prefer a faster pace, activities such as scuba diving, biking and horseback riding abound. Sustainability Highlight: In addition to conserving and maintaining almost 2,000 acres (799 hectares) of primary forest, this Nicaraguan hotel also created a road clean up campaign to recycle waste and educate local residents.

Hotel Highlights: Bordering Costa Rica’s Corcovado National Park — the “crown jewel” of a world renowned national park system — Casa Corcovado Jungle Resort is tucked away in the trees and accessible only by boat. Sustainability Highlight: The resort is committed to demonstrating that alternative energy sources can be practical and are the best option for remote locations.

Hotel Highlights: From relaxed days at the beach to hikes in the national park, activities and options are plentiful at Si Como No. The best part: views of the Manuel Antonio coastline, thought to be one of Costa Rica’s most breathtaking beachfronts. Sustainability Highlight: Si Como No is one of only four hotels in the country to receive a rating of “five leaves” — the highest available from Costa Rica’s Certification for Sustainable Tourism.

Hotel Highlights: Winner of the Small Luxury Hotels “Caring Luxury Award,” Hotel Punta Islita’s tiered layout offers seclusion and incredible ocean views, while providing guests with easy access to rugged beach and mountain landscapes, neighboring communities and more. Sustainability Highlight: Hotel Punta Islita sponsors complementary education, professional training and English language programs.

Hotel Highlights: By prohibiting large groups and tour buses, The Lodge at Chichen Itza provides peace and tranquility to its guests, allowing them to enjoy southern Mexico’s tremendous cultural resources while maintaining a sense of calm and privacy. Sustainability Highlight: The lodge is decorated with community art and handicrafts, demonstrating a commendable support of local artisans.

Hotel Highlights: For the couple who wants endless options, Dreams Tulum Resort & Spa could be the perfect choice. The all-inclusive resort in Mexico’s Yucatan peninsula allows guests to choose from an assortment of activities (including wind surfing, water aerobics and bocce ball), six restaurants and seven lounges — and it’s located just five minutes from the ruins of Tulum. Sustainability Highlight: As part of a program to reduce its carbon footprint, the resort installed low-energy LED lights and sensors that turn off appliances when spaces are unoccupied.
Source: The Rainforest Alliance

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