The first eco-friendly hotel in the province was officially opened at Casterbridge Centre.
The Casterbridge Hollow Boutique Hotel [owned by Mr Louis van der Merwe] was welcomed into the province by MEC for economic development, environment and tourism, Mr Jabu Mahlangu, and board members of the Mpumalanga Tourism and Parks Agency (MPTA) [Chairman, Mr Sabelo Mahlalela] during an unveiling ceremony.
Mahlangu said this was a sign of commitment towards saving the environment. “This is the newest development which supports initiatives to reduce dependence on coal-generated energy and promotes the use of sustainable and green energy.”
The hotel is built from locally obtained material and excludes the use of hardwoods. The 30 rooms are decorated in natural tones with his and hers basins and walk-in shower rooms equipped with solar-powered geysers. All water used in the operations of the hotel is recycled and bio-mite septic tanks are used to further reduce the release of harmful waste into the environment.
Source: White River Post (1 April, 2010)
Well done Casterbridge Hollow Boutique Hotel! With it’s large roof surface area perhaps rainwater harvesting should also be considered. It is sometimes a challenge for hotels and lodges to be come eco-friendly without compromising their standards and guest comfort. A family in their home may be willing to give up certain luxuries or habits (e.g. wasteful use of water) but it is a different situation where a guest may be paying for carefree indulgence. In the case of luxury places of stay, implementation of water- and energy saving measures must be done without guests being compelled to consciously contribute to the conservation efforts. Of course, it does depend on the traveller; many people are actively seeking to stay in green hotels these days. Water Rhapsody water conservation systems are designed to save water without the need to drastically change one’s lifestyle. Grey water rules must be obeyed; it is either reused in toilet systems or diverted to garden irrigation systems. Rainwater harvesting systems are designed to passively collect rain from rooftops to be stored in rainwater tanks. By recycling grey water and collecting rain water, not only can you save water and reduce your water bills, you would be preventing excessive grey water and storm water runoff from entering our already over-capacity sewage systems. Water Rhapsody conservation systems offer numerous benefits to people and the environment.