Locals and internationals alike are now very aware of the ever-changing environment. Many consumers are now keeping in mind environmentally friendly alternatives to ordinary products. The hotel market has seen this need by travellers to minimize their carbon footprint and thus many of South Africa’s hotel owners are stepping up to the mark and utilizing green practices. These are some that are getting it right:
Phantom Forest Eco Lodge, Knysna Forest
You can’t talk about green hotels in Africa without mentioning Phantom Forest Eco Lodge . This exclusive getaway offers accommodation in the cutest tree-top suites which were built using the most eco-friendly practices, from using alien vegetation in the construction right down to recycling the water.
Karkloof Safari Spa, Pietermaritzburg
Often seen as South Africa’s top spa, Karkloof Safari Spa was also built with conservation in mind and a number of wildlife and ecological expert were consulted. Located in Pietermaritzburg , the spa is also home to a rich diversity of flora, birdlife and wildlife.
Contact: karkloofsafarispa.com, Tel +27335691321
The Oyster Box Hotel, Umhlanga
The Oyster Box Hotel, located on the beach in Umhlanga, may not look very environmentally friendly but in fact when the hotel was re-built a lot of effort went into ensuring the hotel was as green as possible. The hotel makes use of sustainable water and electricity techniques while a number of smaller practices are performed at the hotel including recycling and the planting of indigenous vegetation.
Shire Eco Lodge, Stutterheim
The Shire Eco Lodge is a small self-catering lodge situated on an indigenous forest in Stutterheim, Eastern Cape. On the property is also a nursery that goes indigenous bulbs and trees and stunning eco-furniture made from black wattle and Australian blue gum can be found throughout the lodge.
Kololo Game Reserve, Vaalwater
Situated in the rural Limpopo town of Vaalwater, Kololo Game Reserve has dedicated a lot of time and energy to sustainable tourism. Some of their practices include wildlife management and contributions to anti-poaching funds. Guests are also encouraged to bring old clothes for donation at the lodge and to plant a tree during their stay at Kololo.
Mashovhela Lodge, Makhado
This lodge was uniquely built on an abandoned settlement and all roads and pathways to and around the lodge are on already established trails. Located in Makhado( formerly known as Louis Trichardt), Mashovela Lodge is not connected to the Eskom grid and the majority of the lodge’s power is generated through solar practices.
Grootbos Nature Reserve, Hermanus
The owners of the lodge at Grootbos have a true passion for the environment and this beautiful part of South Africa. They also are passionate about developing youngsters from the surrounding communities and are constantly training up new staff through a college programme set up by Grootbos.
Hog Hollow Country Lodge, Plettenberg Bay
As with many small lodges in South Africa, the majority of the staff at Hog Hollow Country Lodge is supplied by the impoverished communities surrounding the property. The hotel also has an on-going recycling programme, as well as a de-wattling programme which aims to increase the indigenous flora in the region.
Phinda Forest Lodge, Maputaland
Although an up-market lodge, Phinda Forest Lodge in Maputaland, Kwa-Zulu Natal, still has their heart in the right place. Phinda is raised on stilts so as not to disturb the unique forest ecosystem that lies below. This light footprint was evident in the construction where not one tree fell.
Hotel Verde, Cape Town International Airport
This new hotel is set to open in July 2013 at the Cape Town International Airport is one of Africa’s greenest hotel projects. Hotel Verde is set to have an amazing array of green elements including wind turbines, a vegetated green roof, an electric airport shuttle, a grey water recycling plant, occupancy sensors in the rooms and a regenerative drive on the elevators.
Also read: 15 of the best eco hotels in Southern Africa