• About the National Geographic Unique Lodges Impact Report

    The National Geographic Unique Lodges of the World collection demonstrates that sustainability and an extraordinary travel experience can go hand-in-hand. In doing so, it raises the bar for the travel industry and takes an important step towards making sustainable tourism a global standard. To join the collection, each property has undergone an on-site inspection by National Geographic representatives that included a thorough review of their operations based on the pillars of sustainable tourism:

    • PROTECTION OF NATURAL HERITAGE
    • PROTECTION OF CULTURAL HERITAGE
    • SUPPORT FOR LOCAL COMMUNITIES
    • ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY PRACTICES

    To measure their impact, we asked each of our members* to report on their sustainability practices, ranging from use of renewable energy to protecting endangered wildlife. The pages that follow detail our findings and highlight individual stories about sustainability projects at the lodges. Their combined efforts are encouraging and inspiring, and they are proof that tourism—when done right—can be a powerful force for good in the world.

  • PROTECTION OF NATURAL HERITAGE:
    BIODIVERSITY CONSERVATION

  • PROTECTION OF NATURAL HERITAGE:
    HABITATS RESTORED

  • PROTECTION OF CULTURAL HERITAGE:
    HERITAGE PRESERVATION

  • PROTECTION OF CULTURAL HERITAGE:
    SUPPORTING LIVING CULTURAL HERITAGE

  • SUPPORT FOR LOCAL COMMUNITIES

  • ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY PRACTICES

Link
  • ABOUT UNIQUE LODGES OF THE WORLD

    National Geographic was founded over a century ago to educate people about the world by supporting exploration, discovery, and protection of our planet’s natural and cultural diversity. Launched in January 2015,National Geographic Unique Lodges of the World has drawn together exceptional properties around the world that share the values that have long defined National Geographic.

    Our lodge members provide guests with outstanding service and experiences while making the choice to tread lightly, to celebrate nature rather than conquer it, to support cultural heritage, and to engage with local communities. The experiences they offer are intimate and extraordinary, connecting guests with their destination in an authentic and meaningful way while helping to protect these treasured places for generations to come

    EACH PROPERTY IN OUR COLLECTION WAS HANDPICKED AND CAREFULLY VETTED FOR THESE ATTRIBUTES:

    • SUSTAINABILITY Protects and enhances nature and culture
    • ENGAGEMENT Connects with and benefits local people and communities
    • AUTHENTICITY Reveals true sense of place
    • EXCELLENCE Provides world-class guest services
    • INSPIRATION Offers unique and enriching experiences

    Learn More

  • PROTECTION OF NATURAL HERITAGE : BIODIVERSITY CONSERVATION

    GROOTBOS PRIVATE
    NATURE RESERVE

    SOUTH AFRICA
    Restoring High Biodiversity Habitat: Cape Floral Kingdom

    Located on the coast east of Cape Town, Grootbos comprises 6,425 acres of reclaimed habitat in the Cape Floral Kingdom. A mosaic of abandoned farms and degraded environments when owner Michael Lutzeyer first laid eyes on it in 1991, Grootbos has become a flourishing reserve of unique and endemic lowland fynbos and centuries-old milkwood trees. Several new floral species have been identified on the land. The lodge owners have expanded their efforts to conserve this fragile ecosystem by founding the Walker Bay Fynbos Conservancy, partnering with 26 other landowners to protect more than 37,066 acres of high-biodiversity habitats. Grootbos also employs local villagers and funds community development programs, including a horticultural college that provides job training for unemployed youth.



  • PROTECTION OF NATURAL HERITAGE

    ZARAFA CAMP
    BOTSWANA
    Saving Endangered Species: Rhinos Without Borders

    Zarafa’s owner, Great Plains Conservation, has embarked on an ambitious project to save black rhinos that are critically endangered due to the dramatic increase in poaching for rhino horn over the last decade. In partnership with safari company andBeyond, the Rhinos Without Borders project seeks to relocate no fewer than 100 rhinos from neighboring countries to safe havens in Botswana—a country with a strong conservation record and commitment to protecting wildlife. Further supported by a robust anti-poaching monitoring and enforcement program, the Rhinos Without Borders project will help secure genetic diversity for rhinos by drawing together animals from different populations. To date, the project has successfully relocated 40 white rhinos to Botswana, and the first births of baby rhinos from that group have already been documented.



  • PROTECTION OF CULTURAL HERITAGE : HERITAGE PRESERVATION

    ASHFORD CASTLE
    IRELAND
    Sense of Place: Historic Restoration

    Originally built in 1228, Ashford Castle has witnessed—and played a part—in much of Ireland’s history. Residents of the nearby village of Cong had worked at the castle for generations until the mid-20th century, when the property spiraled into decay as it traded ownership among different investors. Enter the Tollman family, owners of Red Carnation Hotels, who bought the castle in 2013 with the intent of restoring its grandeur and its ties with the community. They invested $75 million dollars to meticulously refurbish the historic buildings, using local craftsmen and all the scaffolding available in Ireland. As they worked to bring back a sense of place to the property, they also reaffirmed a close relationship with the villagers of Cong, who consider the castle part of their heritage and who, once again, make up the majority of employees. The castle is home to Ireland’s first school of falconry, showcases period furnishings from Irish history, and supports local arts—a model of cultural heritage preservation.



  • SUPPORT FOR LOCAL COMMUNITIES

    THE BUSHCAMP COMPANY
    ZAMBIA
    Benefitting Local Communities: Investing in Future Generations

    Through its own Charity Begins at Home initiatives and in partnership with the Luangwa Conservation and Community Fund, The Bushcamp Company contributes US $300,000 annually to local community development projects. To improve educational opportunities, sponsorships are provided annually to over 300 students up to university level. A meal-a-day program provides nutritious meals to nearly 2,000 children daily, and 3,000 treated mosquito nets have been distributed to local villages to fight malaria. In addition, Bushcamp’s Commit to Clean Water project has provided 40 deep boreholes to date to local communities, improving health, providing irrigation for village gardens, and freeing women from the arduous task of collecting and carrying water over long distances. The Bushcamp Company and its partners support education, improve health care systems, and generate a sustainable source of economic income for the communities of South Luangwa.



  • ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY PRACTICES

    THE BRANDO
    FRENCH POLYNESIA
    Green Power: Renewable Energy from the Ocean’s Depths

    In order to minimize environmental impacts, The Brando has implemented innovative sustainability strategies to provide all of the resort’s energy needs through renewable sources. Solar panels line the small airstrip that delivers guests to the resort, providing heat for all of the resort’s hot water, with additional generators powered by local coconut biodiesel. A Seawater Air Conditioning system (SWAC) provides energy-efficient power to cool the lodge’s 35 rooms. The system involves pumping deep ocean sea water through a series of pipes and an exchanger, reducing energy consumption for air conditioning by 90%, and overall energy use by 70%. This innovative technology is now being considered by cities such as Honolulu to reduce energy costs in downtown business buildings and hotels.



ABOUT THE REPORT
2016 SUSTAINABLE TOURISM
IMPACT REPORT
ABOUT OUR LODGES
FEATURED STORIES
MAP OF COLLECTION
CONNECT WITH US
ABOUT THE REPORT
  • About the National Geographic Unique Lodges Impact Report

    The National Geographic Unique Lodges of the World collection demonstrates that sustainability and an extraordinary travel experience can go hand-in-hand. In doing so, it raises the bar for the travel industry and takes an important step towards making sustainable tourism a global standard. To join the collection, each property has undergone an on-site inspection by National Geographic representatives that included a thorough review of their operations based on the pillars of sustainable tourism:

    • PROTECTION OF NATURAL HERITAGE
    • PROTECTION OF CULTURAL HERITAGE
    • SUPPORT FOR LOCAL COMMUNITIES
    • ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY PRACTICES

    To measure their impact, we asked each of our members* to report on their sustainability practices, ranging from use of renewable energy to protecting endangered wildlife. The pages that follow detail our findings and highlight individual stories about sustainability projects at the lodges. Their combined efforts are encouraging and inspiring, and they are proof that tourism—when done right—can be a powerful force for good in the world.

  • PROTECTION OF NATURAL HERITAGE:
    BIODIVERSITY CONSERVATION

  • PROTECTION OF NATURAL HERITAGE:
    HABITATS RESTORED

  • PROTECTION OF CULTURAL HERITAGE:
    HERITAGE PRESERVATION

  • PROTECTION OF CULTURAL HERITAGE:
    SUPPORTING LIVING CULTURAL HERITAGE

  • SUPPORT FOR LOCAL COMMUNITIES

  • ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY PRACTICES

2016 SUSTAINABLE TOURISM
IMPACT REPORT
Link
ABOUT OUR LODGES
  • ABOUT UNIQUE LODGES OF THE WORLD

    National Geographic was founded over a century ago to educate people about the world by supporting exploration, discovery, and protection of our planet’s natural and cultural diversity. Launched in January 2015,National Geographic Unique Lodges of the World has drawn together exceptional properties around the world that share the values that have long defined National Geographic.

    Our lodge members provide guests with outstanding service and experiences while making the choice to tread lightly, to celebrate nature rather than conquer it, to support cultural heritage, and to engage with local communities. The experiences they offer are intimate and extraordinary, connecting guests with their destination in an authentic and meaningful way while helping to protect these treasured places for generations to come

    EACH PROPERTY IN OUR COLLECTION WAS HANDPICKED AND CAREFULLY VETTED FOR THESE ATTRIBUTES:

    • SUSTAINABILITY Protects and enhances nature and culture
    • ENGAGEMENT Connects with and benefits local people and communities
    • AUTHENTICITY Reveals true sense of place
    • EXCELLENCE Provides world-class guest services
    • INSPIRATION Offers unique and enriching experiences

    Learn More

FEATURED STORIES
  • PROTECTION OF NATURAL HERITAGE : BIODIVERSITY CONSERVATION

    GROOTBOS PRIVATE
    NATURE RESERVE

    SOUTH AFRICA
    Restoring High Biodiversity Habitat: Cape Floral Kingdom

    Located on the coast east of Cape Town, Grootbos comprises 6,425 acres of reclaimed habitat in the Cape Floral Kingdom. A mosaic of abandoned farms and degraded environments when owner Michael Lutzeyer first laid eyes on it in 1991, Grootbos has become a flourishing reserve of unique and endemic lowland fynbos and centuries-old milkwood trees. Several new floral species have been identified on the land. The lodge owners have expanded their efforts to conserve this fragile ecosystem by founding the Walker Bay Fynbos Conservancy, partnering with 26 other landowners to protect more than 37,066 acres of high-biodiversity habitats. Grootbos also employs local villagers and funds community development programs, including a horticultural college that provides job training for unemployed youth.



  • PROTECTION OF NATURAL HERITAGE

    ZARAFA CAMP
    BOTSWANA
    Saving Endangered Species: Rhinos Without Borders

    Zarafa’s owner, Great Plains Conservation, has embarked on an ambitious project to save black rhinos that are critically endangered due to the dramatic increase in poaching for rhino horn over the last decade. In partnership with safari company andBeyond, the Rhinos Without Borders project seeks to relocate no fewer than 100 rhinos from neighboring countries to safe havens in Botswana—a country with a strong conservation record and commitment to protecting wildlife. Further supported by a robust anti-poaching monitoring and enforcement program, the Rhinos Without Borders project will help secure genetic diversity for rhinos by drawing together animals from different populations. To date, the project has successfully relocated 40 white rhinos to Botswana, and the first births of baby rhinos from that group have already been documented.



  • PROTECTION OF CULTURAL HERITAGE : HERITAGE PRESERVATION

    ASHFORD CASTLE
    IRELAND
    Sense of Place: Historic Restoration

    Originally built in 1228, Ashford Castle has witnessed—and played a part—in much of Ireland’s history. Residents of the nearby village of Cong had worked at the castle for generations until the mid-20th century, when the property spiraled into decay as it traded ownership among different investors. Enter the Tollman family, owners of Red Carnation Hotels, who bought the castle in 2013 with the intent of restoring its grandeur and its ties with the community. They invested $75 million dollars to meticulously refurbish the historic buildings, using local craftsmen and all the scaffolding available in Ireland. As they worked to bring back a sense of place to the property, they also reaffirmed a close relationship with the villagers of Cong, who consider the castle part of their heritage and who, once again, make up the majority of employees. The castle is home to Ireland’s first school of falconry, showcases period furnishings from Irish history, and supports local arts—a model of cultural heritage preservation.



  • SUPPORT FOR LOCAL COMMUNITIES

    THE BUSHCAMP COMPANY
    ZAMBIA
    Benefitting Local Communities: Investing in Future Generations

    Through its own Charity Begins at Home initiatives and in partnership with the Luangwa Conservation and Community Fund, The Bushcamp Company contributes US $300,000 annually to local community development projects. To improve educational opportunities, sponsorships are provided annually to over 300 students up to university level. A meal-a-day program provides nutritious meals to nearly 2,000 children daily, and 3,000 treated mosquito nets have been distributed to local villages to fight malaria. In addition, Bushcamp’s Commit to Clean Water project has provided 40 deep boreholes to date to local communities, improving health, providing irrigation for village gardens, and freeing women from the arduous task of collecting and carrying water over long distances. The Bushcamp Company and its partners support education, improve health care systems, and generate a sustainable source of economic income for the communities of South Luangwa.



  • ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY PRACTICES

    THE BRANDO
    FRENCH POLYNESIA
    Green Power: Renewable Energy from the Ocean’s Depths

    In order to minimize environmental impacts, The Brando has implemented innovative sustainability strategies to provide all of the resort’s energy needs through renewable sources. Solar panels line the small airstrip that delivers guests to the resort, providing heat for all of the resort’s hot water, with additional generators powered by local coconut biodiesel. A Seawater Air Conditioning system (SWAC) provides energy-efficient power to cool the lodge’s 35 rooms. The system involves pumping deep ocean sea water through a series of pipes and an exchanger, reducing energy consumption for air conditioning by 90%, and overall energy use by 70%. This innovative technology is now being considered by cities such as Honolulu to reduce energy costs in downtown business buildings and hotels.



MAP OF COLLECTION
CONNECT WITH US