KOH SAMUI, Thailand — Banyan Tree Samui has become the first and only hotel in Thailand to be awarded “Gold Certification” at a single-property level by Earthcheck, the world’s leading scientific benchmarking, certification and advisory group for travel and tourism.
Although other hotel chains have received similar accolades from EarthCheck at a group level, Banyan Tree Samui stands alone as the sole property in Thailand to be recognized at a resort level. The award was announced July 1.
According to Zoe Ma, EarthCheck’s corporate relations manager, the award “recognizes five years of continuous commitment and effort to achieve sustainability by the resort.”
“CSR (corporate social responsibility) has long been one of Banyan Tree’s core values,” said Remko Kroesen, general manager of the 88-villa resort. “Milestones such as this EarthCheck Gold status are achieved through a passion for the environment by all our associates [staff]. To care is in the DNA of our team, and receiving this recognition only fuels the desire to continue our great range of CSR initiatives for years to come when our planet needs it most.”
Banyan Tree Samui is nestled against a lush 38-acre hillside, overlooking a secluded cove of beach, coral reefs and sapphire waters. The resort’s CSR manager is Thepsuda Loyjiw, a certified marine biologist. Thepsuda and her team offer guests “green” activities such as a nature trail with bird-spotting, guided snorkeling tours, and a coral regeneration project, whereby broken corals are revived and re-attached to the coral reef that curls around the half-moon cove in front of the resort.
“We are very proud to receive this EarthCheck award,” said Thepsuda. “Every day, our staff set out to protect the natural terrain and to show respect to the area in which we operate.”
To achieve EarthCheck certification, a hotel or resort must excel in 10 key performance areas:
1. Greenhouse gas emissions
2. Energy efficiency, conservation and management
3. Management of freshwater resources
4. Ecosystem conservation and management
5. Management of social and cultural issues
6. Land use planning and management
7. Air quality protection and noise control
8. Wastewater management
9. Solid waste management
10. Storage of environmentally harmful substances
Villas at Banyan Tree Samui, each with private infinity pool, start from US$500 per night.