Following on from last week’s ‘5 Eco-Friendly Holidays’ article, we thought we would expand on the idea of using Airbnb to reduce the carbon footprint of your travels. Starting with a recent quote, James McClure, General Manager of Airbnb for the UK and Ireland (and formerly a Google Executive), said:
“We are proud to be supporting Earth Day 2015. Having taken a closer look at the environmental impacts of home sharing, we have found that not only does home sharing result in significant reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, it also encourages key environmental awareness among our community. Airbnb’s new model of sustainable tourism helps conserve rare and precious resources even as we continue to grow. From Bristol to Bali, we are committed to fight for Earth Day in every corner of the world.”
Click the house names to visit their Airbnb page. The Rustic Modern Tiny House Portland, OR, United States £85 per night “For years we’ve been daydreaming about “maybe building a house one day”. Then we finally made it happen - using our own two hands (DIY! The Portland way!) and with the help of some great friends (thanks, everyone!). We had a vision in mind, but a lot of the details came together as we built, based on what materials we had available to us. Downstairs is the kitchen, living room with fold-down sleeper and bathroom with tiny clawfoot tub. Upstairs is the loft bedroom with comfortable queen sized bed. Sustainable design is important to us, and the house is constructed and furnished from an eclectic array of reclaimed materials - squirreled away over the years, and now creatively reused and repurposed” Our verdict: This house is clearly the culmination of a long, well thought out and careful project. The tiny house looks delightful and it would make a great story to stay here! The Recycled House - Walk Downtown Charlottesville, VA, United States £136 per night “The Recycled House is a unique structure in Charlottesville's lovely North Downtown neighborhood. It is constructed primarily from materials that have come from somewhere else and are getting a second life. It took over six years to collect the materials and use them in a thoughtful way. The house was designed as a guest house and a lot of effort has been put into building a place that's welcoming, interesting and fun! The materials give the place a lot of soul, the light from the 33 windows is fantastic and the location could not be better!” Our verdict: This property is insane! There are so many recycled and reclaimed items in the building and used as furniture. The design element is brilliant too, this place is so stylish! Villa Aalaya Ubud, Bali, Indonesia £241 per night Villa Aalaya (Sanskrit for 'Home") is a beautiful villa made up of three antique teak buildings. The Joglo is our daytime space; containing the kitchen, dining room and sitting area, this building is completely open to the beautiful view of the forest, gorge and rice fields. Group dinners are great on our 4m x 1.5m teak dining table! The Limasan is our private space, containing three bedrooms, a TV area, our library and two upper floor loft spaces (office and sacred space) The giant timbers and 40 foot ceilings create a stunning space to relax in. Finally, the Gladak is a separate, self-contained bedroom, made entirely of teak with its own private outdoor bathroom and veranda, mini fridge and coffee/tea making facilities. Our verdict: It’s not as reclaimed or recycled as some of the other properties on this list, but a large majority of the property has been designed using natural sources, and done in such a way that this looks like a jungle palace! When can we stay? Before we continue with our 5 Eco-Airbnb Properties You Have To See, here’s some more information about Airbnb and their Environmental findings. In a recent study examining the environmental impacts of home sharing, Airbnb discovered that home sharing results in significant reduction in energy and water use, greenhouse gas emissions, and waste generation. Key findings showed that: Airbnb properties in Europe consume 78% less energy than hotels Airbnb properties in Europe produce 89% lower greenhouse gas emissions compared to hotels Airbnb properties in Europe consume 48% less water than hotels 89% of Airbnb hosts in Europe provide recycling options for their guests Top Eco Retreats wishlist below & UK case study available for interview Ok, let’s continue. Rainforest Tree House with Hot Springs Cooper, Alajuela, Costa Rica £58 per night The Tree House is charming, new and handcrafted at our 35 acre Bio Thermales rainforest reserve with natural hot and cool springs pools in the north-central Costa Rican heartland. This is authentic Costa Rica: clean, comfortable and close to nature. Our hot springs are ancient “deep Earth” sources that bubble up through the rainforest floor, laden with mineral-rich waters that have been in the Earth for at least 10,000 years. Our waters are rich in bicarbonates, calcium and magnesium, low in sulfur, and slightly acidic -- qualities shared by many of the world's best hot springs. The Tree House is built to strict Costa Rican building codes, but as with all tree houses, there is some movement when the wind blows, and this could be uncomfortable for people very sensitive to motion sickness. Our verdict: It doesn’t matter how old you are; treehouses are epic! This looks like a great place to stay, and with the added luxury of hot springs all around, you’d probably be too relaxed to realize you are suspended in the air! Container home, a unique house! Palma de Mallorca, Balearic Islands, Spain £81 per night Live the experience of stay in a unique design house in Majorca made from container modules. A very original house full of light, just 10 minutes from the historic centre of Palma. Our verdict: The owner doesn’t say a lot about the structure of the house, just that it’s made from shipping containers. Within the outer walls lies an incredible, ultra-modern space, with a swimming pool, multiple levels and a decking fit for the Balearic climate. Seen better? Tweet us your favourite Airbnb eco homes to @plasticexpertuk