#CocoTravel – Whether you wish a cosy staycation or aspire to venture a little further afield, a trip away to while away the winter blues is just the thing to refresh and revitalise before the long-awaited new season arrives. We all love a luxury break away, but travellers are being more mindful about their green credentials are looking to stay in luxurious but sustainable accommodations. Who says luxury and sustainability must be mutually exclusive? You can have an eco-friendly break without sacrificing the finer things in life.
We round up the best eco-friendly luxury breaks to take in 2018:
Lapa Rios, Costa Rica
Lapa Rios is a 930-acre private nature reserve located at the southern-most tip of the Osa Peninsula. It was the first ecolodge to gain the coveted 5 Leaf Rating of Costa Rica’s Sustainable Tourism Certification scheme. Stay in one of the luxurious 17 private bungalows which have all been designed in harmony with the surrounding forest and beaches. They have been built with locally harvested materials and are open-air with screens that allow you to experience the sounds, sights and smells of the rainforest and the ocean.
Guests can take a secluded shower on their outside deck which is open to the sights and sounds of the rainforest and can enjoy the beautiful panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean from your bed!
Zarafa Camp, Botswana
Zarafa Camp in Botswana’s Selinda Reserve is one of the ‘greenest’ safari camps on the planet. It is an intimate space with just four spacious, lavishly-appointed tents and a private villa, The Dhow Suites. Only recycled hardwoods and canvas were used in the construction and all the camp’s electricity comes from its solar farm, while “bio gas” plants recycle waste into usable cooking gas. Zafara Camp in Botswana’s Selinda Reserve comes highly recommended by James on Safari.
Drinking water is treated through a UV filtration system to eliminate the use of disposable plastic water bottles.
Hix Island House, Puerto Rico
Located on the Spanish Virgin Island of Vieques, just off the southeast corner of mainland Puerto Rico, Hix Island House is an ideal place to ‘get away from it all’. The property has a ‘direct connection with climate and nature’. It has become renowned for its environmentally friendly practices; it uses solar panels to power both their electricity and hot water and they also use recycled water from the guests’ showers and basins to feed the guavas, bananas and papayas growing nearby.
LeFay Resort, Italy
If you’re seeking sheer indulgence, a secluded and peaceful environment and a holistic approach to your holiday you should look no further than the Lefay Resort & SPA Lago di Garda. Situated in a 27-acre nature reserve, surrounded by olive groves and overlooking Lake Garda, this award-winning eco-spa, is dedicated to protecting the environment and is also fully carbon neutral. Take a relaxing dip in the innovatively-designed spa which is home to saunas, grottos and indoor and outdoor pools, including a saltwater pool and an infinity pool overlooking the lake.
Song Saa Private Island, Cambodia
Want to truly get away from it all? Song Saa Private Island is Cambodia’s first luxury private island resort and nestles in the warm sapphire waters of the Gulf of Thailand. Conservation is a key priority for Song Saa, they proactively work to improve local livelihoods as well as preserving marine life and rainforests.
This is an ideal destination for those seeking a tranquil getaway safe in the knowledge that where they are staying are mindful of their impact on the environment. Experience the ultimate in eco-luxury escapes where all the villas have an ocean view, a private pool and have an effortlessly cool design with four-poster beds, Moroccan lanterns and carved statues which add flair to each eco-chic space.
White Pod Eco Resort, Switzerland
Situated in the stunning Swiss Alps, the Whitepod Eco Resort offers the ultimate alpine experience, where you can sleep in the most adorable pod. Choose from either the futuristic glamorous 007 pod which comes with your very own ‘Bond Girl’ bed, champagne bar and private sauna.
If you are looking for a more rustic aesthetic, the Forest Pod Suite brings the outside in and in the most luxurious way. Sleep in a cosy king size “nest bed” or opt to swing out in your very own hammock. This clever little pod also comes with its own sauna.
White Pod’s philosophy is very much about saving the environment whilst getting away from it all. The pods are minimal impact which means that they utilise minimal water and electricity and only use renewable resources wherever they can.
Green House Hotel, Bournemouth
Bournemouth is one of the UK’s most popular destinations and it is easy to see why! It is also home to the ‘Best Green Hotel in the UK 2017.’ The Green House Hotel is situated close to Bournemouth’s award-winning beaches and is ideal for a simple yet luxurious staycation. Think glam but green!
The hotel’s restaurant ‘Arbor’ has an oak sculpture reconstructed as a tree and the furniture is made from sustainable materials such as felled trees, even the Victorian roll-top baths are all reclaimed and even the paint and wallpaper are eco-friendly.
In keeping with their environmentally friendly ethos, each of the 22 rooms are named after trees and the eco-beds have been especially designed for the hotel after two years’ worth of research and development.
Campi ya Kanzi, Kenya
Campi ya Kanzi (Camp of the Hidden Treasure) is an award-winning, boutique eco-lodge in Kenya that sets a new standard for the experience of true luxury that is also truly ecologically low-impact. It demonstrates that you can have the comfort and service of a top hotel, the fine dining of an Italian palazzo without compromising on your green credentials.
Not only can you enjoy a luxury break, but you will be helping to support a meaningful conservation project. Campi ya Kanzi was built using only local materials that had fallen from trees naturally and their water is sourced from the rain using their special catchment system.
Chumbe Island Coral Park, Tanzania
If you love snorkelling and the underwater world, you can’t experience a more beautiful coral reef than at the world’s first private Marine Protected Area.
Chumbe Island Coral Park is a small island off the coast of Zanzibar, off the coast of Tanzania in East Africa. The first privately established and managed Marine Protected Area in the world, and the only one fully-funded through ecotourism.
The resort has zero ecological impact and there is a maximum of 14 guests that can stay on the island. Choose from just one of seven beautifully designed ‘bandas’ which are sustainable bungalows which are idyllically set in the protected forest and are just 30 seconds to the beach where you can enjoy out-of-the world snorkelling.
Guests can dine in the former lighthouse keeper’s home which has been restored and remodelled into a giant-clam-shaped restaurant bungalow where they can enjoy typical Zanzibarian cuisine which is a delicious blend of Asian, Arabic, African and European traditions, made from local produce to minimise waste.