Ecotourism keeps moving forward just like the travels’ movement. New trends continue to meet the desires of Eco-conscious travelers’ passion to the see the world, connect with the world, and preserve and protect the world they visit.
What are the new Eco-Vacation trends?
Meeting the need for less impact on the environment:
Some Eco-conscious travelers may not want their luxurious hotels or dwellings as the focus for a vacation. Instead they prefer the location itself to provide total aesthetic inspiration where they can experience nature in its most unadulterated form possible. This travelers’ craving will encourage the increase in accommodation types with unobtrusive designs.
Two examples of this trend:
Opened in January 2013, SleepingAround is a temporary hotel that is continually placed in different locations around Antwerp. Basic shipping containers have been transformed into a hotel space, with rooms furnished using sustainability sourced materials. Guests find out where they will find their overnight location only after confirming their booking. GPS directions will take them to their night’s stay location. Lloyd Alter’s Tree Hugger article, Sleeping Around: A Shipping Container Hotel that’s on the Move, adds details on this new trend.
Pedrassalgadaspark is a collection of cabins built to blend into the woodland environment in a northern Portugal park and spa. Various sizes cabins with window and door are placed to increase enjoyment of the cabin’s locations in between the tree gaps. Designboom’s Architecture covers the unique architecture for Pedras Salgada.
Flower Power – Hotels that take being green to the limit:
Many travelers adopted a sustainable mindset for a sustainable vacation. For this traveler the LEED certifications, green housekeeping operations and sustainability programs are not enough. These guests search for bolder and even more iconic displays of what it means to be green. In order to truly stand out from the ‘sustainable hotel’ crowd, luxury brands are pushing the boundaries to embody nature by becoming a beautiful, living, breathing extension of it.
One example of this trend:
The HotelB3 in Bogota has an eight-storey living wall decorating the building’s exterior. Composed of more than 25,000 plants (over 40 per cent of which are indigenous Colombian species), the vertical garden is self-pollinating and also helps to insulate the hotel and reduce pollution.
Eco-experiences – giving guests an active role in sustainability:
For the Eco-conscious traveler sustainability appeals to the majority, but now the truly Eco-conscious travelers expect their lodgings to give them an opportunity get involved in sustainability during their stay. Savvy brands in the hotel sector understand that for these consumers, responsible consumption is a two-way affair.
Two Examples of this trend:
In 2012, CottageLodge bed and breakfast in Hampshire unveiled the Standing Hat room, where guests who want to watch television are required to do so via pedal-power. Other Eco facilities include bamboo flooring and a wood-burning stove.
Natt Garun’s Digital Trends’ article UK’s Cottage Lodge Hotel Room Features A Pedal-To-Power LCD Television details this sustainability trend.
Chile’s Tierrapatagonia created an initiative in 2012 to give each of its guests a trackable virtual tree seed for planting in fire-ravaged areas of the Chilean Patagonia. Every guest is given a virtual tree code when they reserve an accommodation at the hotel. After the guest chooses where they would like their tree planted, they receive an email certificate verifying planting along with the exact, trackable coordinates through a geo-referenced Google Maps link.
Andrew Harper’s Forbes’ article Chile’s Striking new Patagonia Tierra Hotel & Spa provides details on this sustainable resort.
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