On Earth Day, here's a list of eco-friendly hotels — and we tell you which is the best deal
Just in time for Earth Day today, travel site TripAdvisor has released a list of the best eco-friendly hotels in America. The site takes environmentalism seriously, creating a GreenLeaders program that “identifies hotels and B&Bs that are committed to green practices like recycling, water efficiency and alternative energy.” Then it used user reviews to rank the most green hotels by popularity.
But Debt.com care just as much about another kind of green, so we sum up the TripAdvisor list and add prices — which it didn’t include…
10. Holiday Inn Express Inverness (Lecanto, Fla.)
Price: $94 a night
The cheapest and one of the smallest hotels on the list earned its ranking by sending the soap you leave behind to developing countries. It also has “automatic systems regulate electricity and hot water for increased efficiency,” TripAdvisor says. And a lot of recycling bins.
Its not-so-green-but-still-important amenities include being pet friendly and offering free breakfast and Wi-Fi.
9.Hampton Inn & Suites Miami/Brickell-Downtown (Miami, Fla.)
Price: $161 a night
No, all the green hotels aren’t in Florida. And this one isn’t even the closest on the list to the beach: No. 6 is on the shore of Lake Tahoe.
But it’s got plenty of water in a 35,000-gallon cistern that gathers rainwater for reuse, and it’s a short six-mile trip by electric car to Miami Beach. When you get back, you can plug in at one of the hotel’s two car-charging stations. And then there’s the TaterWare: You’ll eat free breakfast with utensils, plates, and bowls that are made out of “bio-based potato starch and fully biodegradable.”
8. The Lenox Hotel (Boston, Mass.)
Price: $515 a night
A block from the Boston public library and green before it was cool, “the 204-room Lenox Hotel was one of the first hotels to offer a linen-reuse program back in the 1980s,” TripAdvisor says. Rather than resting on its laurels, the hotel now recycles nearly 90 percent of its waste and donates leftover amenities to charity.
Yes, it’s pricey. But it’s only the second-most expensive. Read on.
7. ARIA Sky Suites (Las Vegas, Nev.)
Price: $503 a night
Why “Sky”? It might be the free airport transport, “using the world’s first stretch-limo fleet powered by compressed natural gas” according to TripAdvisor. Or it might refer to the vantage point of the rooms, which offer views of the not-so-green neon lights in the Las Vegas Strip below. The building, appliances, and food have all kinds of green certifications.
6. Cedar Glen Lodge (Lake Tahoe, Calif.)
Price: $169 a night
Sitting right next to the lake, it’s no surprise this hotel is big on reusing water. It funnels snow and rain through filtering vaults, recirculates hot water, and has low-flow appliances.
It’s pet-friendly and also offers free breakfast and Wi-Fi — funny how the cheaper places do that and the expensive ones don’t.
5. Montage Deer Valley (Park City, Utah)
Price: $242 a night
As you get toward the top of the list, the hotels all share a lot of the same green features. Like several others ranked by TripAdvisor, the hotel has sensors to automatically turn off lights and electronics, adjust the temperature, and close the blinds when the rooms are empty.
What sets it apart from the rest of the list isn’t green but white — it’s a couple hundred yards from two ski lifts. Deer Valley’s slopes were used in the 2002 Winter Olympics.
4. Sleep Inn & Suites (Miles City, Mont.)
Price: $119 a night
There’s not much going on in Miles City. “The largest event of the year is the Miles City Bucking Horse Sale held in May,” according to Wikipedia.
That makes it all the more impressive this hotel is on the list. Its green features include the energy-saving motion sensors, and donating or reusing leftovers (food and amenities). It also uses rainwater and “waste water from sinks” for its fire sprinklers. And yes, there’s free breakfast and Wi-Fi.
3. Hilton Garden Inn Fayetteville/Fort Bragg (Fayetteville, N.C.)
Price: $132 a night
A popular choice for military families (who get a discount) because of its proximity to the largest Army installation in the country, Fort Bragg. But it’s not just for those wearing green. “The surrounding landscaping was designed to be self-sustaining and is irrigated using rainwater collected on the roof,” TripAdvisor says.
2. Allison Inn & Spa (Newberg, Ore.)
Price: $360 a night
What’s in Newberg? Willamette Valley, also known as Oregon wine country. The hotel’s roofs are covered in solar panels and sedum, a plant that helps insulate the building. The linens in your room are only changed on request, and the hotel doesn’t use plastic bottles for anything. (Water comes in glass bottles.)
1. Bardessono (Yountville, Calif.)
Price: $700 a night
If the name Yountville doesn’t ring any bells, Napa Valley probably will. Yep, more wine country.
But the green features are equally impressive: “A subterranean geothermal system provides heating and air-conditioning to the sumptuously designed guest rooms,” TripAdvisor says. Two gardens on the property provide veggies for the restaurant and bar. The hotel site has a lengthy page talking up its green credibility.
But being friendly to the environment sometimes means being a little less nice to guests. They don’t allow smoking on the property, and that includes e-cigs. They also don’t put coffeemakers in every room, because as the general manager told one reviewer, “they are environmentally unfriendly. We do have several available upon request.”