The Most Luxurious Eco-Friendly Hotels to Book Now

Hotels see hundreds of guests daily and run through resources quickly, from water to toiletries. Many accommodations, including high-end hotels, have put more effort into reducing waste and making changes that take care of our planet. A resort that is eco-friendly works towards a carbon neutral footprint and having as minimal an impact on the natural landscape as possible. Sustainability places an emphasis on the local community surrounding the hotel and utilizes on-site processes for sourcing energy, water and other resources. The Global Sustainable Tourism Council standards for sustainability include operating in a way that benefits local residents and supports their culture. Eco-friendly and sustainable resorts might use solar panels as a source of energy, utilize local materials, practice composting, use recyclable products and reduce energy consumption. When you want a luxury stay without sacrificing environmental consciousness, book one of these eco-friendly hotels.

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Eco-friendly luxury hotels

St. Regis in Bali

Bali is an Indonesian province that draws tourists looking for surf and other water activities, gorgeous beaches and wellness. Located on the pristine Nusa Dua beach is the St. Regis, a 5-star Marriott oasis consisting of luxury villas hidden among tropical foliage. The bungalows feature private pools and entryways to the hotel’s saltwater lagoon. The family-friendly eco hotel is one of the best in Bali and presents a variety of activities including outdoor movies, tea parties and sunrise picnics. Guests can enjoy the on-site spa and restaurants serving Balinese cuisine.

Marriott has been a leader in achieving a carbon-zero footprint, meaning there are no carbon emissions released from hotel operations. Mirroring the industry-leading efforts of its parent company, the St. Regis strives to offer reusable products, establish its own on-site water sourcing, keep the beach clean, and lower water and energy consumption. St. Regis also aids its nearby community by donating free meals to locals in need. Earthcheck gave the resort a Gold Certification for its green initiatives.

Gili Lankanfushi in Maldives

The Maldives fall on the bucket lists of most travelers searching for crystal clear water for diving and snorkeling and a peaceful atmosphere. Gili Lankanfushi is a resort and spa with overwater bungalows and jaw-dropping views. Set on a private island, the hotel has multiple restaurants with panoramic views of the sunset, an underground wine cellar and dining experiences throughout the island. The various docks lead from the island out into the sea and are lined with high-end villas. Some villa amenities include a private infinity pool, lounging nets above the water, a gym with air-conditioning, and a water slide.

Gili Lankanfushi advocates for its marine environment by having as little negative impact as possible on its white sand beaches and undersea ecosystem. The resort is built with local natural materials and focuses on energy-efficient practices. Food is made with ingredients from the on-site organic garden, and the organic toiletries are held in reusable containers. The hotel even has on-site desalination to produce drinking water.

Soneva Kiri in Thailand

The sustainable design of Soneva Kiri is appealing for eco-advocates seeking to experience Thai culture, meet elephants and explore the bright blue waters. The lush jungle meets a sublime beach with a gentle and glassy tide on the island that is home to the eco-resort. The accommodations consist of one to three bedroom villas complete with private swimming pools, roofless bathrooms, a treehouse for kids and more. Soneva Kiri is a tranquil escape that immerses guests in nature.

The Soneva chain of resorts has its own organization dedicated to sustainability and reducing carbon emissions. The Soneva Foundation helps to preserve forests and the ocean, lower water and energy consumption, and improve the health of the local community. The group established a water sourcing plant that uses solar energy and reusable containers to end the use of plastic water bottles. Soneva helps to deliver Myanmar stoves to the community to reduce pollution and wood usage.

The Peninsula Hotel in New York City

Just a short walk from Central Park, high-end Fifth Avenue storefronts and Rockefeller Center is this 5-star hotel with beautifully detailed architecture and lavish guest rooms and suites. Tucked in the middle of Manhattan, The Peninsula Hotel has an on-site spa, salon, fitness center and indoor pool. Guests can take in 360-degree views while dining at the rooftop bar and relish the peaceful atmosphere inside the on-site American restaurant and cocktail bar.

The Peninsula’s “Life Lived Best” initiative includes meals made with natural local ingredients and community outreach. The diverse staff receives benefits including an employee wellness program. The hotel chain continues to accomplish its goal of eradicating single use plastics on its properties and using ingredients that promote animal welfare. The Peninsula Hotel in New York works with EarthCheck for green certification and works to lower its carbon footprint and water consumption.

Lapa Rios Lodge in Costa Rica

Retreat into the wild expansive rainforest reserve that conceals one of the best hotels in the world amidst its jungle treetops. Costa Rica is known for its ecotourism due to its incredible wildlife-filled rainforest, sandy beaches with turquoise water and surf, waterfalls, volcanoes and more. Lapa Rios Lodge puts guests in the center of it all with bungalows overlooking the ocean and private pools.

The palm frond-covered lodge and bungalows are built with as minimal effect on the rainforest as possible and Lapa Rios leads sustainability tours for guests. They source organic foods locally and use renewable and biodegradable materials. Lapa Rios also assists in the development of the local community with employment, education and enhancing infrastructure.

Borgo Pignano in Tuscany

Set against the rolling hills of Italy is a dreamy, 18th-century estate with proximity to a waterfall, vineyards and farms. The magnificent stone villa has an on-site family pool, infinity pool, fitness center, bocce court and church. Guests can unwind in the on-site spa and savor delicious Italian meals at the estate’s restaurants. Borgo Pignano offers horseback riding through the countryside, hikes, fitness classes, kids’ activities, art and cooking classes, wine tastings and more.

Borgo Pignano is part of Beyond Green hotels, which offer some of the most sustainable accommodations in the world. The buildings on the property were renovated with eco-friendly and locally sourced materials. The staff work tirelessly to protect their surroundings with on-site farming and improving processes like collecting rainwater. The villa uses on-site organic gardens and practices bee keeping. Borgo Pignano has two charging stations for Tesla vehicles and received a Green Globe certification.

The Retreat Hotel at Blue Lagoon in Iceland

One of the most sought-after travel destinations in Iceland is the Blue Lagoon, a hot water spa in a lava field that overlooks mountains. The 5-star Retreat Hotel is located right at the Blue Lagoon in a modern building with colors that blend in with the landscape. Guests can pull open their curtains to gaze at expanses of steam rising from Tiffany blue water that is packed with minerals. The Retreat boasts a luxurious spa with underground rooms and a variety of treatments.

The Retreat Hotel obtains all of its power and hot water from the geothermal renewable energy produced by the Blue Lagoon. The Retreat’s groundbreaking environmentalist ethos is clear through its conversion of carbon emissions into healthy reusable materials that feed the microalgae used in the production of skincare. The hotel blends with its natural surroundings and offers paths gently carved through the lava fields for guests to wander with less environmental impact. The on-site sustainable restaurants use local organic ingredients.  

Svart in Norway

Svart is one of the most sustainable hotels in the world and was the first energy-positive accommodation. The building is a ring of light that floats above water on stilts at the base of jaw-dropping views of snow-capped mountains, lush green valleys and icy blue water. Guests here escape the hustle and bustle to become one with the environment. This ultimate eco-lodge gives visitors the opportunity to hike glaciers, go horseback riding and mountain biking, and experience the thrill of deep-sea fishing. There is an on-site spa with wet, quiet and active areas for a variety of wellness practices.

As the industry leader in energy-efficient architecture, Svart has worked eco-friendly ethos into its entire operation, from farm-to-table dining to self-sufficient water, waste recycling and electricity. The hotel uses solar panels for renewable energy, greenhouse farming and works to bring holistic wellness to each guest.

Pikaia Lodge in the Galapagos Islands

Awarded with numerous Leading Green Hotel in South America awards, Pikaia Lodge mixes environmental consciousness with incredible experiences on an island with a diverse landscape. Perched on top of a grassy hill, the eco-lodge overlooks volcanic rock and a vibrant blue ocean. Guests encounter a variety of wildlife both on-site and during excursions such as scuba diving and snorkeling. Travelers climb through caves and walk along lava rock terrain. The opulent guest rooms have floor to ceiling glass windows for panoramic views and exquisite bathrooms. The elevated infinity pool has a breathtaking view of the landscape.

The carbon-neutral Pikaia Lodge was built with as little disruption to the planet as possible and using sustainable materials. Guest rooms are cooled with natural thermal insulation and equipped with biodegradable toiletries. Pikaia places an emphasis on ecotourism that preserves the environment and maintains an untouched feel on the island. 

&beyond Phinda Rock Lodge in South Africa

Resting on a hill surrounded by stunning views of the Phinda Private Game Reserve is this quaint eco-lodge. Guests can not only relax on nearby pristine beaches and explore coral reefs, but can also experience the rush of bush walking and safari trips to get up close to wildlife. Phinda Rock Lodge offers romantically-lit rooftop restaurants, private plunge pools at its villas and open-air showers. The hotel allows children ages 12 and up and provides laundry services free of charge. Its six suites have air conditioning and picturesque views.

Phinda Rock Lodge’s main focus is to protect local species of wildlife and practice conservation. The hotel’s sustainability efforts include abolishing the use of plastic bottles, hiring local employees, educating the nearby community and improving their health, and reducing energy consumption.