Green is a darling colour. Its the colour of growing grass, summer leaves and delicious fruit, of emeralds and jade. A primary colour that stands tall between yellow and blue. It depicts goodness, healthy living and encourages us to do the right thing for our environment. I’d be proud to be green. I’d be even prouder to be Hotel Verde, the Greenest Hotel in Africa.
Located just 400m from the Cape Town International Airport, Hotel Verde showcases some of the most advanced, environmentally conscious installations, methods of building and operational practices in the world. It also has a lightness of touch, welcome level of luxury, warmth, and hospitality that will make you want to join the ’green’ movement on the spot.
I was lucky enough to spend a night there, invited to join a group of Cape Town-based travel bloggers for dinner, a tour and first-hand experience of this charming Bon hotel. Yes, it is at the airport, but let that be positive! How wonderful to break your journey or transit with a night of feel-good luxury that is sure to leave you revitalised – and more aware of our world.
Offering 145 rooms, popular conference facilities, a restaurant, bar, indoor gym, outdoor jogging trail and an eco-pool (completion Feb 2014), you could not want for more. There is also much open space, which surprised me and added yet another element to the extensive green features. Gorgeous room with every amenity you could ask for. Its air-conditioned of course, but if you don’t use the air-con you put points back in the system, which can be redeemed against your bill on checkout.
Bar area with its inside green wall, which is such a great looking feature whilst reducing the temperature of the space and cleansing it of carbon dioxide. Plants are amazing things. The dining experience is all about health and wellness with the food seasonal and sourced and produced locally. There is the green wall outside the dining room where they are growing their own. An aquaponic herb garden that backs onto the green belt.
For those of you who are focused on fitness, the fully equipped gym is the first in South Africa to use power-generating equipment – these machines pump power back into the hotel as you work out and show the amount of energy you are generating. So novel – and so inspiring. With seven meeting rooms available, the conference facilities cater for all, from one-on-one meetings to launches and larger groups. And there is free wifi throughout the hotel.
I love that they filter, bottle and carbonate their own water. No plastic bottles on offer here. It was really cool to see that the walls of the underground parking garage are covered in murals. It certainly transforms a rather dull area into something friendly and fun and they even offer preferential parking to greenies. The hotel’s energy is partly sourced by wind turbine and stored in the basement. Serious facilities.
Recycle. Recycle. Recycle.
All of the areas are used. Balconies, roofs and garden edges are planted to local and useful plants. It is beautiful. There is a strong sense that this is an establishment that enjoys getting up in the morning. Which as fore-runners in the world of green hotels, I can completely understand. They educate and encourage, whilst warmly hosting. It smacks of feel good and I left hoping to see more Hotel Verde models taking shape across the globe.
If I thought Green was darling before, I now know how it can be implemented with style and enviable finesse into top hotels too.
Thank you Hotel Verde for hosting me and making that so evident. Immensely proud that Cape Town is home to you. For reservations or additional info, contact firstname.lastname@example.org. The physical address is 15 Michigan Street, Airport Industria. Tel: +27 21 380 550 and website www.hotelverde.com. Bear them in mind for conferences, overnights in Cape Town and just a green-tinged night away from it all. You will leave happier if you do.