Luxury Holiday resorts are now doing their bit to help the environment!
Chiva-Som, Thailand, www.chivasom.com
Located in the royal resort of Hua Hin on the Gulf of Thailand, Chiva-Som is Asia’s premier dedicated health spa. Offering a holistic approach to health and wellness that blends Eastern and Western philosophies, Chiva-Som – meaning ‘Haven of Life’ – is world-renowned for the quality of its therapies as well as its delicious, healthy spa cuisine. Chiva-Som is the only destination spa to have been consistently ranked as one of the top three Best Destination Spas at the Condé Nast Traveller Readers’ Awards, since the awards were launched 11 years ago.
Since launching 15 years ago, Chiva-Som has been committed to sustainability at all levels, offering a world-class experience whilst embracing an ethical business ethos:
- Founding member and driving force of Preserve Hua Hin, a collaboration between local businesses, state agencies and volunteers, dedicated to actively contributing to the community and increasing environmental awareness through fund-raising, sponsored events (e.g. their annual music festival) and organising regular activities like beach clean ups, mangrove planting, gardening.
- Dedicated to spreading its healthy living message not just to moneyed international guests but to the wider community, Chiva-Som’s Health Education & Awareness programme educates local schoolchildren in the importance of nutrition, fitness and personal hygiene. Dedication to employing and developing local staff, supporting their families and ensuring social welfare is paramount.
- Predating the advent of benchmarking, Chiva-Som has always been scrupulous in its waste management and energy usage practices (solar panels for heating water and staff housing; water conservation via on-site purification plant; refillable receptacles for in room amenities to name a few) and is now Green Globe certified. New green initiatives are constantly being implemented throughout the resort. Renowned for delicious spa cuisine, Chiva-Som has created an organic farm, where produce is grown for use in kitchens and an array of spa treatments.
Tongsai Bay, Thailand, www.tongsaibay.co.th
An idyllic 87-room resort built in tropical gardens overlooking a secluded bay on the exclusive northern coast of Koh Samui in Thailand. The combination of beachfront suites, cottage suites and villas all feature screened outdoor bathtubs for alfresco bathing and command spectacular views over the bay. The beautiful Prana Spa at Tongsai Bay offers guests the ultimate privacy with its secluded spa cottages uniquely designed for two people, complete with herbal steam room and open-air floral bath.
Concerned by the increasing environmental problems on the island The Tongsai Bay set up its own “Green Project” in an attempt to set a good example for other entrepreneurs on Koh Samui. The Green Project helps to preserve the balance between humans, animals and the environment on Koh Samui not only within the hotel grounds but also by educating staff in the hotel. The Tongsai Bay’s environmental practices are comprised of a strict waste management and minimisation programme; chemical usage minimisation; conservation of plants and animals; energy saving measures; environmental education for all hotel staff; and participation in ‘green’ projects within the community. The hotel has constructed its own waste categorisation house and all waste is recycled where possible. In addition only biological cleaning products are used in the hotel to minimise chemical usage, and an extensive water treatment system has been implemented to save energy. Central to the hotel’s environmental project is the conservation of plants and animals and a zero-tolerance policy on hunting, killing and deforestation has been implemented. Biological pesticides are used to deter rather than kill and the hotel has established its own animal rescue for stray animals.
The hotel is very active within the community and has been involved in projects such as tree planting; mangrove reforestation; rubbish collecting in the local community and accommodating children from local schools to enable them to learn about the Green Project.