SAii Lagoon Maldives, Curio Collection by Hilton: Microcosm of Maldivian sustainability

Set on the breathtakingly, beautiful lagoons of South Male Atoll, SAii Lagoon Maldives has led the resort group’s quest for Green Globe certification across its portfolio. SAii Lagoon Maldives is the first resort to complete certification this year, with sister resorts, SAii Phi Phi Island Village, SAii Laguna Phuket having also completed their final on-site audits this month.

SAii Lagoon Maldives management is committed to maintaining the ecological balance and wildlife of their island, including marine species, vegetation, and land-based creatures. Vegetation around the island has been restored using only native plants and trees.

A comprehensive Sustainability Management Plan and Environmental Policy are in place and other policies such as Environmental Purchasing Policy, Pollution Management Plan, Code of Conduct are also documented and adhered to. LED lights are in place throughout the premises, all ACs are inverter type and office equipment is energy efficient.

The resort provides sustainability training for all colleagues including topics such as climate change, waste management and nature conservation. A dedicated hour of sustainability and environmental protection training is mandated in the resort’s orientation programmes and management and staff stay up to date on environmental events and issues which are displayed on the team’s notice board.

A comprehensive training is done on the “Zero Waste” Project and this is supported by Hilton internal programs. Earth Hour and World Environment Day are observed each year, along with regular island and reef clean-ups among the green events organised by the resort with invitations extended to all guests.

Local culture is incorporated in the SAii Lagoon Maldives’ operations, for example a traditional Bodu Beru performance is organised once a week; all paintings in the rooms and public areas have been made by a local artist; and a traditional local boat (dhoni) is displayed in the main restaurant and used for the floating breakfast. And resort guests are encouraged to take part in cultural awareness with visits to the Maldives Discovery Center where they learn more about Maldives history, culture and environmental issues.

SAii Lagoon Maldives purchases FSC certified printing paper and other certified paper products such as facial tissue, toilet paper and C-fold towels. Guests room amenities are made with natural ingredients and are USDA organic certified. Liquid soap and lotions are in ceramic containers and non-woven, biodegradable material is used on all amenity packaging, which reduces the amount of plastic that arrives at the resort.

To eliminate the use of more than 100,000 plastic bottles a year, SAii Lagoon Maldives has partnered with Eco Pure (UK) to introduce glass bottles for drinking water in all areas. When it comes to food purchasing, preference is given to locally produced items such as banana, papaya, watermelons, reef fish and tuna. All local varieties of fish are caught by the local fisherman.

Wastewater generated at the resort is treated through an STP facility and used for irrigation purposes, which saves a considerable amount of fresh water. This grey water is also used for, SAii Lagoon Maldives organic garden, where they grow fruits and vegetables and recycle green waste into compost for fertilisation.

In the future, the resort will introduce new ways to handle food waste via a digester and biogas plant which can generate fertiliser for the gardens and cooking gas for the team members’ kitchen. And embracing the lack of available land on the atoll, a floating solar panel platform will be launched to contribute to the resort’s energy needs.

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