Eco-friendly travel and sustainable tourism are some of the top buzzwords today in the travel and tourism industry worldwide. “Go Green” is the slogan you hear most often nowadays. Planet-conscientious travelers are more frequently seeking out eco-friendly lodging wherever they travel.
In ecotourism hotspot Costa Rica, L’acqua Viva Resort & Spa is a leading eco-friendly hotel in Nosara Costa Rica on the Nicoya Peninsula. The Bali-style Costa Rica luxury hotel is located between the beautiful white sand beach of Playa Guiones and forested foothills, full of wildlife like frequently visiting howler monkeys.
The Nosara, Costa Rica area was recommended as one of the best places to go by CNN and National Geographic. Playa Guiones at Nosara is one of the most beautiful beaches on the Guanacaste Pacific Coast and is renowned for some of the best surfing in Costa Rica.
L’acqua Viva Resort is owned by a family company that makes sustainability practices part of the hotel’s daily routine.
1. Recyclable materials are taken to the Nosara Recycling Association, a local woman-run community organization.
2. Energy saving programs include modern technology appliances in the kitchen and laundry areas, and special switches in hotel rooms that turn on the electricity only with the electronic room key card.
3. L’acqua Viva Resort places particular attention on its gardens since the hotel borders the Nosara Biological Reserve, which in turn adjoins the community-protected strip of land bordering the beachfront. L’acqua Viva’s gardens have become an integral part of the Playa Guiones biological corridor – which makes for great wildlife viewing right at the hotel. Howler and white-faced monkeys pass through the trees, and other animals like coatis walk in the gardens (posing no risk to guests who leave them alone).
The property on which the hotel was built hosts important native tree species of the northern Pacific region of Costa Rica. Hotel construction has worked around the trees in order to conserve them; more trees have been planted over the years, creating the virtual oasis of green that is a big attraction for hotel guests.
Additionally, the hotel has a fruit and vegetable garden that supplies the restaurant kitchen and the bar with ingredients for meals and drinks. A hotel nursery supplies the gardens and also allows for donations to community organizations.
4. Residual waters and sediments produced from the hotel’s sewage treatment plant irrigate and fertilize the gardens – part of the secret why the gardens stay beautiful all year long.
5. L’acqua Viva Resort maintains the public land around the hotel by cutting back vegetation that hinders visibility along the public road, and that interferes with electrical lines.
7. Being part of the Playa Guiones community means helping with local programs like the Costa Rica Ecological Blue Flag Award, which Playa Guiones, Playa Nosara and Playa Pelada recently received for continuing to be some of Costa Rica’s cleanest beaches.
8. L’acqua Viva Resort supports the Ostional National Wildlife Refuge in Costa Rica, the second largest nesting site in the world for Olive Ridley sea turtles, with naturalist guided tours. Turtles nest at Ostional all year round, but from July to December is the time for the mass arrivals of tens of thousands of turtles coming ashore to lay their eggs, called “arribadas” in Spanish. This amazing phenomenon has been called one of the most spectacular nature events that you can witness in the world.
Article by Shannon Farley