Wellbeing the next generation design writer Mabs Potter of sustainable While eco or green may have been the catchwords for environmentally friendly practices in the hospitality industry in recent years, the ever-growing ﬁeld of sustainable design for resorts, hotels and spas actually encompasses a much larger picture than just eco- friendly building principles. BEYOND GREEN guaranteed to improve overall levels of resource hub for education and resources Sustainable design has come a long way in management, operational efﬁciency and for a sustainable lifestyle for this aware the last decade. No longer limited to post- revenue generation.” demographic, which continue to swell in construction eco friendly add-ons, the new numbers. According to IPK International, generation of green hotels, resorts and spas SUSTAINABLE LIFESTYLES a tourism consulting and monitoring group, are being designed with both environmental It is not just costs that are driving the 20 percent of Germans, who comprise and social impacts in mind from the get sustainability trends in hotels and resorts, Europe’s largest economy, embrace the go. “Green awareness has revolutionised but a new wave of well-off, well-educated, LOHAS lifestyle, and for 64 percent, the global hospitality industry in ways health conscious and socially and ecological aspects remain at the top of their that the industry would never previously environmentally aware consumers who list when booking travel. imagined,” says Mottie Essakow, founder are becoming the premium travel customers, In the same report, 42 percent of of OmWard Bound, a company specialising according to experts at the 2011 World American leisure travellers say they are in developing responsible luxury resorts, Travel Monitor Forum. Lifestyles of health willing to pay more for green travel products. spas and wellness centre. “Being ‘green’ and sustainability, or LOHAS, is the term “LOHAS are a lifestyle phenomenon means much more than basic ideology designated to describe these eco aware discussed as the new premium target and has outgrown the boundaries of travellers, as deemed by The World Travel group in tourism,” explains Katja Neller, traditional corporate social responsibility Trends report for 2011. Originating in the Senior Consultant with German research practices. Rather, green is being recognised US, but now with an Asia-based site also, company Schober Group. “They think as a tool and a set of principles that are LOHAS.com has developed as the online globally, are very mobile and open-minded104 AsiaSpa 2011 2011 AsiaSpa 105
Wellbeing THIS PAGE: Water villa interior at Six Senses Laamu, Maldives. OPPOSITE PAGE: Sustainably-built yoga sala at Fivelements, Puri Ahimsa, Bali, Indonesia and operation of high performance green that will not only foster better environmental great lengths to avoid negative impacts in are sourced locally,” notes sustainable WATER USAGE buildings, and was developed by the US practices, but has also developed criteria all phases of their development by hiring hospitality design expert, Mark Wuttke, Besides being one of the most precious Green Building Council. A point system is with The Global Partnership for Sustainable environmental impact assessment teams Principal of the Wuttke Group. resources, water is also one of the most used in which buildings earn LEED points for Tourism to set standards for community so that a comprehensive study can be Six Senses is known for treading heavily relied on in resorts, hotels and spas. satisfying speciﬁc environmentally friendly engagement and social responsibility. undertaken. lightly in the remarkable locations of There are simple, but effective, cost cutting building criteria in several categories such Key areas include infrastructure and David Simister, Chairman of CB Richard their luxurious resorts and spas, and has measures that can be taken to create a as site selection, water and energy use community planning, and community Ellis, a development investment firm consistently committed to a sustainable more sustainable operation that will reduce efﬁciency, materials and resources, and engagement and consultation, among working with the Royal Group, explains that resources policy in regards to construction overall usage levels. indoor air quality. others. Hotels such as the Taj Residency their multi-faceted environmental strategy materials, especially when it comes to Installing low ﬂow taps and keeping up Points earned are applied to a not only shine in many EarthCheck will take into account everything from water timber usage in the construction of their with proper maintenance to avoid leakage classiﬁcation of silver, gold or platinum environmental categories, but they also and solid waste recycling and low-energy villas. At Six Senses Laamu in the remote are two of simplest practices. Melia Bali status. LEED standards are recognised value their responsibility to the society and consumption to outlining the development Laamu Atoll, all 97 of the luxury villas are Villas and Spa Resort reduced their water internationally and in Bangalore, India, local in where they are located. Initiatives regulations that will include density built with sustainably sourced timber by volume in all ﬁxtures by simply cutting for example, the ITC Royal Gardenia include engagement with underserved controls, site coverage, height restrictions working closely with local governments water pressure by 30 percent, the cost of Hotel, which is one of Starwood’s Luxury populations, such as those living in slums and maintaining fauna corridors for and the Forestry Stewardship Council. Other which was negligible compared to the Collection Hotels, was conferred with the and on the street, and providing education, existing species. Simister cites the untapped sources for timber are from responsible annual dollar savings that they reaped. LEED Platinum rating for its sustainability training and resources so that they may have potential of Cambodia’s coastlines as an timber suppliers, which ensures that timber Laundry is a huge water consumer practices, which include innovative a means to make a living. opportunity for a responsibly developed for the resorts is either recycled and comes in resorts and efﬁcient, energy star-rated and are looking for a type of tourism that technology and design integration in beach destination. “Given that Cambodia from second-hand uses or is renewable and machines make for a huge savings in is ecologically sustainable and meets their water and energy conservation practices. SUSTAINABLE PRACTICES is an emerging tourist market, it still has not cut from old growth forests. overall water consumption. Water is also standards of ethics and social justice. But Chief Executive of ITC Hotels, Nakul Sustainability premises embrace many key the opportunity to adopt eco-development Material sourcing is also part of the greatly consumed by cooling towers, which they are also critical consumers, especially Anand explains, “The challenge was to principles that range across a variety of practices and avoid the mistakes of existing core philosophy at Balinese healing centre, remove heat from hot refrigerant gases of ‘green washing’ marketing strategies.” see how luxury and responsibility could disciplines, and in the hospitality industry destinations such as Phuket, Samui, Pattaya Fivelements. All buildings at the deeply from air conditioners. Proper maintenance As global travellers, these eco lifestyle exist in harmony together, thus a series of include everything from selecting the and Bali, which have followed a more eco-conscious resort are made of local of the towers, along with reducing overall driven consumers are also seeking out sustainable measures and practices were initial location, orientation and layout typical development route,” notes Ellis. bamboo and feature other locally sourced cooling needs, ensures that the towers are resorts, spas and hotels that reﬂect their adopted to ensure sustainable practices of the facility to the types and sources “Pattaya Bay, for example, was an area of materials such as coconut wood, stone and not operating within wasteful levels and sustainable values, which go way beyond were effectively implemented at every level of construction materials, along with outstanding natural beauty in the 1960s alang-alang grass, which is used for rooﬁng. using excessive amounts of water. just the old standards of eco awareness inside the hotel.” operational fundamentals such as efﬁcient until it got developed. With carefully “Sharing the Balinese way of life teaches Another key area for water conservation that hotels may have adopted, such as Another well-respected certifying water and energy usage and renewable planned and executed environmentally people to nurture harmony with both the is in the recycling of grey water (water encouraging hotel guests to use towels body is EarthCheck, an internationally sourcing, solid and liquid waste reduction, sensitive development strategies, Koh Rong spirit and the environment, which is key to which is not ﬁt to drink, but which does not more than once. “Sustainable best practice recognised environmental management and disposal and recycling and the responsible can avoid these mistakes, minimise the mass personal transformation,” says Fivelements contain any human waste matter). A star principles are now being integrated into all certiﬁcation programme designed for the sourcing of products used in everyday developments found in other established founder Chicco Tatriele. performer in this realm is EarthCheck (Silver aspects of planning and development from travel and hospitality industry, and which operations. A solid social responsibility destinations and create a carefully planned design and architecture to management has, over the last 10 years, created standards policy that includes engagement with ecological resort island. This type of and operations,” claims Essakow. “Green that through independent verification, the community in which the resort or large scale development illustrates how is now being practiced as an integral part ensure the measurement and monitoring hotel is located is also an aspect of the sustainable design is a key component when of everyday management and operations, of natural resource consumption (such as core fundamentals of sustainability in the planning sustainable developments, even on yet without using the word ‘eco’, ‘green’ or energy and water), in addition to monitoring hospitality industry. a large scale, as is the case with Koh Rong.” ‘sustainable.’ Simply put, ‘authentic’ is the social and environmental impacts. Although new ‘chic’, ‘responsible’ is the new ‘luxury’ EarthCheck has raised awareness in the SITE SELECTION AND SURVEY MATERIAL SELECTION and ‘eco’ is an integral part of mainstream.” hospitality industry for the need to reduce Perhaps one of the most important elements After site selection, which takes into account environmental impact in a transparent is site section, as many of the world’s the existing resources available to support SUSTAINABLE STANDARDS manner, sustainability is taken a step further. most alluring and pristine places are the the resort, hotel or spa, the construction Certiﬁcation also plays a key role in the As EarthCheck CEO Stewart Moore states, very ones that tourists would like to visit. components are equally as important. growth, implementation and awareness of “The terms ‘eco’ and ‘green’ tend to refer Locations like the Maldives, or other island Sourcing locally available or recycled sustainable design, and although standards to practices that have a positive impact atolls are particularly vulnerable since building materials not only supports the continue to evolve, there are a few that on the biophysical environment, but these both the ﬂora and fauna on land and in the local community’s economy, but also stand out. Sustainable building certiﬁcation practices often overlook the needs of people marine ecosystems are at high risk from lessens the carbon footprint, which can be is most widely available from LEED, and local economies.“ irresponsible practices. Both currently heightened due to excessive transportation which refers to Leadership in Energy and EarthCheck, taking its lead from the operating Song Saa Private Island in the of goods. “Sustainable design should be Environmental Design, and it is one of the Sustainable Development principles of Koh Rong Archipelago and the proposed developed in harmony with the natural most recognised third party certiﬁcation Agenda 21, as laid out at the Rio Earth island development by The Royal Group of and cultural environment, which includes benchmarks for the design, construction Summit, encourages core design elements Cambodia in the same area, have gone to using non-toxic building materials that106 AsiaSpa 2011 2011 AsiaSpa 107
Wellbeing level) certiﬁed Alila Villas Uluwatu on Bali’s more sustainable future. Resorts and hotels through sustainable means are equally the level of biodegradability of the product, into everyday life in the area, but can also southern Bukit peninsula, which uses a are more frequently considering alternative as important. Many resorts are located the distance the product had to travel to contribute to its longevity. Guest contributions comprehensive grey water recycling system energy sources such as solar, wind, thermal in particularly delicate ecosystems such arrive at the resort, and many other factors. go towards the upkeep of existing projects that was engineered by Singapore-based (volcanic steam), and tidal. At Shatki, a as tropical islands. Reducing the overall Everything from personal care products for and the development of new social and WOHA Design into the core design, and luxury tent camp in the foothills of the volume is paramount in lessening the guests, such as soaps and lotions, products environmental ventures. As Stewart Moore which supplies irrigation to the landscaping Himalayas, the principle energy source need for disposal, as are recycling efforts. used in spa treatments, and cleaning states, “Sustainable tourism takes into account and is also used for toilet ﬂushing. The grey for the electricity supply is primarily solar, Proper training of staff with a speciﬁc waste supplies to ingredients used in the kitchens the social, economic and environmental water is sourced from an extensive rainwater including solar lamps, which are used in the reduction and recycling plan in effect will for dining, all add up to having impacts, impacts of travel and strives to leave host collection system that is built under any low traditional dwellings. In a similarly pristine increase the effectiveness of any policy. whether positive or negative. The Langham destinations in a better state as a result of lying areas where water tends to collect, setting, Wolgan Valley Resort and Spa, which In the West Indies, the Sandals Regency Hotel in Auckland, New Zealand, for visitors passing through. For tourism to beneﬁt and is stored and ﬁltered in reservoirs and borders the Greater Blue Mountains Heritage La Toc Golf Resort and Spa is very waste example, has developed a Green Suppliers a host destination, resorts and hotels must be rain gardens. By utilising natural rainwater Area outside of Sydney, stipulates that 35 conscious due to its island location and Procurement policy which is used as a sustainable for the long term and deliver real for landscape irrigation, a vast amount of percent of its energy for the entire resort be composts all organic waste on site which qualiﬁer for purchasing managers who, as a outcomes for the local community.” secondary water needed by the resort is sourced from solar, wind and tidal power. is eventually used for landscape mulching result, will be more able to make informed supplied through proper and thoughtful Quantity of energy usage is key in and is also developing a means to recycle and responsible choices on products used BIOMIMICRY: NATURE’S DESIGN design from the onset. Steve Jeisman, Group sustainable design and there are a plethora their kitchen oil into bio-diesel which will in the hotel. For a truly sustainable future in our quest to build and dwell on this planet, which has THIS PAGE: Deck overview at Song Saa Private Island. Director of Spas and Development for Alila of solutions for reducing consumption in be used for the resort’s motorised boats. OPPOSITE PAGE: Alila Villas Hadahaa, Maldives. Hotels, and who plays a very active role the ﬁrst place. Both water heating and air Even in urban settings, hotels are making COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT ﬁnite resources, we must ultimately look in spearheading Alila’s commitment to conditioning systems eat up an incredible important changes such as the Alto Hotel Sustainable design in hotels, resorts to Mother Nature herself for the answers sustainable design, notes “Eco-initiatives amount of energy so efﬁciency and proper in Melbourne which has greatly reduced its and spas is no longer relegated to only to designs that will not deplete and stress in a spa or resort can only be reached by waste level by eliminating all plastic bottles the actual operational practices and the earth to its limits. Biomimicry is an SUSTAINABLE FUTURE maintenance is key. The Alto Hotel in in guest rooms and replacing them with physical construction of a facility, but innovative aspect of sustainable design that The underlying notion of sustainable design a full commitment from everyone involved Melbourne has installed movement sensor reﬁllable pump dispensers, composting all also encompasses a wide range of social cannot be overlooked when considering is an interface in which the overall design in the development, including investors, technology in their guest rooms, which green waste for garden use, and purchasing principles, that take into account the impact the long-term environmental impacts of and the daily operational procedures of designers, builders, local government and continuously adjust the air conditioning bio-degradable basics such as corn-based on the community in which it is located. the hospitality industry. Biomimicry is a the facility integrate with both the people management.” output, which not only resulted in a 35 garbage bags and key cards. Supporting local communities not only key aspect in sustainable design in which and the place in which it is located percent increase in efficiency but also creates a more welcoming destination for the evolutionary ideas of nature inspire and continues to evolve to incorporate ENERGY SOURCES AND USAGE reduced use when no one was staying in GREEN PROCUREMENT tourists, but it also supports and engages design and processes. In terms of the built even greater conservation practices and The size of a hotel or resorts’ carbon the room. Sustainability in hospitality design the community so that the resort itself environment, The Biomimicry Institute calls community involvement. Today’s travellers footprint is a direct result of their reliance extends beyond just physical design, can become more integrated into the for “harnessing energy like a leaf, growing have more planning resources at their on fossil fuels, the use of which creates SOLID WASTE REDUCTION AND and energy use and waste management community, both from a economical food like a prairie and building ceramics ﬁngertips than ever before with the deluge carbon dioxide emissions and adds to the RECYCLING practices. Products consumed by the standpoint and a social one. like an abalone…” of information available on the Internet, and greenhouse effect (where excess heat is Hotels and resorts have the potential of hospitality industry also have the potential In Yunnan Province in China, Banyan By using nature as our model, we cannot thus awareness for sustainable lifestyles is trapped in the atmosphere which leads to producing vast amounts of garbage and Tree Ringha sponsors the waste management just take from the world, but learn from it as continuing to grow and hotels and resorts global warming.) Energy usage that relies both the reduction of the amount to begin for signiﬁcant environmental consequences operations of the local community to help well. This is well illustrated in Bill Bensley’s are responding with ever more practices on alternative sources will thus create a with, and the disposal of the remainder due to the amount of packaging involved, protect the local ecosystem. An incinerator newest spa design at the Indigo Pearl and possibilities. was supplied to Geino village, which Phuket’s, Coqoon Spa, which is a dramatic David Simister reﬂects on what is to is managed by a village resident whom combination of a tree top spa suite nestled come and says, “Travellers, now and in the Banyan Tree Ringha pays, in order to help in old Banyan trees, with a deluxe spa future, are more environmentally aware the community promote more responsible salon below. By working with the existing and I believe this will lead to further growth waste management practices. Keeping in trees, Bensley suspended the hand-woven in demand for new unspoiled holiday line with sustainable principles, Banyan structure ten metres above the ground in destinations. Sustainable design practices Tree has also supplied 14 families in Geino the trees, much like a bird would build are being embraced by more and more village with solar water heating panels, its own nest. Understanding how Banyan developers and operators and it seems to which provide hot water. trees grow by extending runners outward, be the best way forward.“ Community engagement extends beyond he notes, “Years from now, the tree will environmental practices, and can create grow around the cocoon and embrace it in sustainable incomes for the local people. its own way. The interplay of this gorgeous www.lohas-asia.org At Malikha Lodge in the eastern Himalayas, tree is paramount, whereas the ‘chic’ aspect www.earthcheck.org the lodge consulted with local church and is secondary.” By taking inspiration from www.ecotourism.org village elders to create guest experience nature, this innovative spa design not only www.sustainabletravelinternational.org programmes that would not only encourage synergizes with the natural surroundings, www.1planetwellness.com their guests to engage in local community but also mimics what nature would have www.usgbc.org projects, so that they can gain insight created herself.108 AsiaSpa 2011 2011 AsiaSpa 109
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