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8 sustainable and eco-conscious stays around the world

By Kelly Eng 11 April 2022

Header image courtesy of 1 Hotel Haitang Bay 

With rising temperatures and global warming remaining hot topics around the globe, many institutions are putting more effort into promoting sustainability. An effective way to be mindful while travelling is to choose sustainable locations for holidays! A number of hotels and resorts have been stepping up their efforts to educate visitors about the environment and allow travellers to spend time in nature. Here are some eco-friendly accommodations around the world to check out, from the Maldives to South Africa and beyond.

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1 Hotel Haitang Bay, China

1 Hotel Haitang Bay is all about sustainability. It strives to minimise its carbon footprint with energy-, water-, and waste-reduction projects. While prioritising its environmental impact, it also works to ensure the well-being and health of its guests, offering high-quality food from eco-friendly sources. One of its most remarkable facilities is the Sky Bar, which executes earth-conscious initiatives in hopes of reaching zero waste in the future. 

Besides coating-free paper straws and tissues made with recycled fibre, the culinary programme also uses local products as ingredients for its food and drinks, including sushi, skewers, and cocktails. Everything in 1 Hotel advocates for sustainability, and travellers can explore different environmental designs and strategies during their stay here.

1 Hotel Haitang Bay, 4 Haitang South Road, Sanya, Hainan, China | (+86) 898 8869 1888

Bawah Reserve, Indonesia

If you are in search of an exotic travel destination, put Bawah Reserve into your bucket list. Located in Indonesia’s Anambas archipelago, the off-grid resort offers sustainable outdoor adventures, such as kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding, snorkelling, and diving. 

Other than offering fun activities, Bawah Reserve prioritises its vision to protect environmental values and the surrounding marine ecosystem, such as preserving endangered species of flora and coral reefs in and around the island. It also focuses on saving energy through the installation of solar panels, and provides its guests with a chance to learn about environmental challenges due to climate change. 

Additionally, travellers staying at the Elang Private Residence can get access to the clubhouse, restaurant, ocean-view bar, saltwater pool, Javanese-setting spa, and more.

Bawah Reserve Anambas Kiabu, Pulau Bawah, Siantan Sel., Kabupaten Kepulauan Anambas, Kepulauan Riau 29791, Indonesia | (+65) 6970 5482

Singita Sabi Sand, South Africa

Home to many wildlife animals, from rhinos to giraffes to zebras, Singita is the epitome of biodiversity. With approximately one million acres of land, the safari runs across four African countries and focuses on wildlife management, ecosystem restoration, and building sustainable partnerships with neighbouring villages.

Family safaris give travellers an opportunity to immerse themselves in nature while enjoying programmes to enhance the learning experience. Children can participate in activities like animal tracking, bird watching, and bush survival lessons, while teenagers can be hands-with planting trees, making a fire, finding edible plants, and more. 

Singita also offers different options for family vacations, ranging from two-bedroom suites and private villa in its five lodges. Resources like babysitting facilities, spas, and fitness centres, are also available for travellers to enhance their time at Singita.

Singita, Sabi Sand, South Africa | (+27) 21 683 3424

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Patina, Maldives

“Perpetuality, sustenance, kinsfolk, and balance”—these are some of the major elements that Patina Hotels & Resorts focuses on. Its initiative to honour nature aims to nurture sustainability values in guests while providing them with a relaxing vacation. For example, Patina minimises food waste through veganism and supporting local suppliers, teaching participants about the benefits of local, organic sourcing and plant-based cuisines.

A unique programme hosted by Patina for kids is the Fab Lab at Footprints. Here, children can work with 3D printing technology to transform recycled ocean plastic into models, an energy-saving technique used by resorts during construction. Additionally, with a PADI dive certification, visitors can sign up for free diving lessons and explore the local ocean environment. Patina offers a variety of activities and age-inclusive activities that do not disappoint, promising families a wonderful and meaningful stay.

Patina Maldives
, Fari Islands, North Malé Atoll, 20026, Maldives | (+960) 4000 555

Laguna Golf Lăng Cô, Vietnam

Water buffaloes provide a great source of labour for the Vietnamese, and the Laguna Golf Lăng Cô in Vietnam has fostered three greenkeepers that mow the rice field as well as protect the area’s ecosystem. Water buffaloes have immensely reduced waste by replacing machinery, as maintaining seven hectares of rice field can take up a lot of fuel. 

Moreover, Laguna Golf Lăng Cô has completely gotten rid of single-use plastics like garbage bags, straws, and locker room accessories. It is also installing its own water bottling plant in order to replace plastic bottles with reusable glass bottles. 

With its effort to promote sustainability, Laguna Golf Lăng Cô has become one of only three golf courses in the world to attain the EarthCheck Gold certification. Any golfers with an eco-conscious mind can visit Laguna for an enjoyable trip amongst water buffaloes.

Laguna Golf Lăng Cô, Lộc Vĩnh, Phú Lộc, Thua Thien Hue 530000, Vietnam | (+84) 234 3695 880

Hilton, Sydney

If you are looking for an eco-friendly trip in an urban setting, the Hilton in Sydney is the place for you. It has been reducing waste through circular economy initiatives, such as partnering up with Soap Aid, which recycles discarded hotel soap into hygienic soap bars for redistribution to communities in need. Since 2015, this initiative has created nearly 200,000 new bars of soap and prevented 24,000 kilogrammes of it from entering landfills. 

Furthermore, Hilton also recycles used packaging like plastic wraps into durable fence palings for farmers by working with Beyond Skin Deep. While learning about Hilton’s effort in promoting sustainability, you can explore the activities happening in the city. Visit the Sydney Tower, Queen Victoria Building, and Darling Harbour nearby, or go to the Sea Life Aquarium and Bondi Beach to explore some marine life!

Hilton Sydney, 488 George Street, Sydney | (+61) 2 9266 2000

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Hilton, Singapore

As the first hotel in Asia to attain the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) and Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) Chain of Custody certifications in 2015, Hilton in Singapore has done a significant job in executing sustainability. In an effort to increase awareness amongst its guests, Hilton constantly highlights the importance of responsible suppliers and sustainable ingredients by implementing these factors in its dining menus. 

Moreover, to promote local sourcing, the hotel harvests vegetables and herbs in its own garden, which recycles and reuses water in a closed-loop water irrigation system. It continues to work on different initiatives to further reduce waste production, inspiring change for businesses beyond hospitality.

Hilton Singapore, 581 Orchard Road, Singapore 238883 |  (+65) 6737 2233

Conrad, Maldives

Interested in planting coral babies? Join the coral conservation programme hosted by Conrad Maldives on Rangali Island, where you can help corals grow in their natural habitat. By working with marine biologists, you will first break corals into smaller pieces, then insert them into a rope to be rehabilitated in the coral nursery. Guests also have the chance to go snorkelling and visit the conservation, making the experience more meaningful and fun. When the coral babies mature in a year or two, Conrad Maldives will contact the participants and provide updates on their contribution. 

At the resort, you can enjoy lunch or dinner at the first subaquatic eatery in the world, chill in the swimming pools with clear ocean views, or go on a boat party with your friends and family. While you engage in activities to protect the marine ecosystem, there are also endless things to do and see at this eco-conscious resort.

Conrad Maldives, Rangali Island, 20077, Maldives | (+960) 668 0629

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Kelly Eng


From dipping hot Cheetos in birthday cake ice cream to scuba-diving despite being ocean-phobic, Kelly loves exploring new and weird things with her family and friends. While her talents are eating and napping, she enjoys dancing, writing, and socialising as well. As an advocate of pineapple pizzas and durian tofu pudding, Kelly is also a passionate fan of K-pop, romance fiction, and sea otters.