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(2020 - Spring Issue)


Across the United States, hotels and resorts find many guests are asking questions about recycling, sustainability and environmental impacts. Accommodations are adding and modifying in-house practices to put their property at the forefront of the conservation movement. According to the Center for Responsible Travel, it’s a growing movement.

Here are properties in five different states leading the eco-dream trend across America:

Colorado’s natural beauty attracts people who cherish the outdoors and have a strong commitment to protecting its ecological integrity. Eco-friendly properties include Opus Hut, the most luxurious of the many rustic alpine huts in the state’s park system. Roughly a seven-hour drive from Denver, the Opus Hut is off the beaten path in the San Juan Mountains, between the towns of Silverton and Telluride. Visitors can hike to the hut and find easy access to mountain bike trails, lakes in summer and ski runs in winter. The year-round hut runs on solar power, creating a zero-carbon stay, with modern plumbing and a meal service so guests don’t need to pack their own food. opushut.com

In the heart of downtown Boulder, Colorado—nearly 50 kilometres north of Denver—the luxurious St Julien Hotel & Spa is devoted to sustainability and reducing its impact on the environment. Find biodegradable take-out containers, sustainable organic growing, low-impact LED light bulbs and energy-saving settings on electronics and TVs. stjulien.com

In Colorado Springs, the SCP Hotel (it stands for Soul Community Planet) is situated to take advantage of the best of the city as well as the nearby Colorado wilderness. The unique hotel has a minimal plastics policy, uses low-flow fixtures and water-efficient native landscaping, and non-polluting cleaning products. Colorado Springs is an hour south of Denver and sits at the eastern Front Range of the Southern Rocky Mountains. scphotel.com

On Maui, which is the second largest of the Hawaiian Islands, head to The Westin Nanea Ocean Villas for its limited impact on the tropical landscape. The world-class resort dubbed “nanea,” which translates as tranquility, was certified LEED Goldin 2018 for its eco-friendly initiatives. Included in the sustainability efforts you can anticipate 100 per cent LED lighting and a sophisticated, efficient irrigation system that only waters the native plants as needed. The resort sits on North Kã’anapali Beach, a slightly quieter stretch along the northwest corner of Maui. westinnanea.com

On Hawaii’s O`ahu, the luxurious Four Seasons Resort O`ahu at Ko Olina operates an extensive recycling program that includes recycling cooking oils and food waste, a ban on plastic straws, repurposing discarded linens, retrofitting LED light bulbs and installing AC sensors for the guestroom’s sliding lanai doors. The oceanfront property lies on Oahu`s wild and rugged western coast, less than a half-hour from the international airport in Honolulu. fourseasons.com/oahu/

The Vermont Green Business Program website lists eco-friendly lodging all over the state. At the forefront is Basin Harbor in Vergennes on the shores of Lake Champlain where they compost all food waste, have installed low-flow toilets and use solar power to heat the outdoor pool. Nestled in the green Vermont hills, Lake Morey Resort in Fairlee is committed to composting food waste, resort-wide recycling and an ozonating laundry system. The year-round resort has installed perfect flow showerheads in all guestrooms and uses earth-friendly cleaning products. vtgreenhotels.org

Near the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, which is a huge tract of Utah’s gorgeous desert wilderness, Boulder Mountain Guest Ranch strives to protect and conserve water resources through onsite restoration projects. Find solar showers, greenhouses and for edibles, the restaurant regularly forages for organic produce.The sustainable property also adheres to a strict use of biodegradable products, from cleaning supplies to guest amenities. The handmade furniture is crafted exclusively from local wood—mainly harvested deadfall. bouldermountainguestranch.com

Just a short drive from the Phoenix airport, the “luxury within a desert oasis” Arizona Grand Resort & Spa is tucked into the base of South Mountain Preserve, America’s largest urban park and the state’s most visited hiking destination. The AAA Four Diamond, all-suite resort is committed to environmental responsibility and sustainability with reduced energy use and water savings initiatives, certified green cleaning and electronic vehicle charging. arizonagrandresort.com

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