Friday, October 2, 2009

The World's Top 10 Eco-friendly Hotels

As Determined by TripAdvisor Editors and Travelers - TripAdvisor(R), the world's most popular and largest travel community, recently announced its top 10 eco-friendly accommodations, according to TripAdvisor editors and travelers. From rustic cabins in the forest to contemporary digs in the city, these green properties allow travelers to be environmentally conscious, while enjoying incredibly unique and beautiful places to stay. Here's the top 3 for you to ponder :)

#1 - Eco-Adventure: Hamanasi Adventure and Dive Resort, Hopkins, Belize - Travelers' Choice Winner 2009: Best Bargain, Best Hidden Gem, Best for Romance - Average Nightly Rate: USD$245

Set on 21 acres of coastal forest, this eco-resort's green practices ensure that nothing goes to waste, from composting all vegetable and fruit scraps to using old linens as cleaning rags. In addition, the resort's dive adventures educate guests to minimize the negative impact of human contact with the environment. According to one TripAdvisor traveler, "The fact that the resort advocated reusing towels, limiting sheet changing and using the surrounding natural beauty made us feel that we were contributing to the preservation of Belize."

#2 - Terra Firma: Hotel Terra Jackson Hole, Teton Village, Wyoming - Average Nightly Rate: USD$371

Eco-friendly elements abound in the Hotel Terra, literally from floor (environmentally-friendly carpets) to ceiling (recycled roof shingles). Organic linens, low-flow toilets and solar-powered faucets can also be found in guest rooms, and even relaxation is green here, with organic spa products, and 100 percent natural mattresses made from recycled and organic materials. As one TripAdvisor traveler said, "We were ushered to our suite and discovered that not only was it the latest in eco-friendly hotels, but incredibly luxurious!"

#3 - Organic Accommodations: La Cusinga Eco Lodge, Uvita, Costa Rica - Travelers' Choice Winner 2009: Best Hidden Gem - Average Nightly Rate: USD$166

While stunning views of the Pacific are reason enough to visit La Cusinga Eco Lodge, its eco-friendly programs and commitment to conservation make it all the more appealing. Set in the rainforest, the eco-lodge's electricity is generated by solar and hydropower, and the water is heated by the Costa Rican sun. Buildings are constructed from re-forested wood and local materials, and rely on natural air currents to cool them. As one TripAdvisor traveler commented, "The organic gardens were my personal favorite, and they use all the fruits and vegetables in their daily meals."

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