Virtuoso Life May 2019 4 Do-Good Hotel Experiences

4 Do-Good Hotel Experiences

Anantara Peace Haven Tangalle’s rice paddies. 
Anantara Peace Haven Tangalle’s rice paddies. 
Photo by Anantara Peace Haven Tangalle
Good works are as much a part of these stays as turndown service. 

Anantara Peace Haven Tangalle Resort, Sri Lanka

It’s good news for the earth that vegetable gardens are becoming de rigueur at future-minded resorts and hotels. The 52-room Anantara Peace Haven Tangalle Resort on Sri Lanka’s southern coast grows its own vegetables, herbs, and rice, plus Ceylon cinnamon and tea on a patch in the forest. Executive chef Chaminda Pathirana leads guests on garden tours, educating them about age-old farming methods and inviting them to pitch in gathering ingredients for lunch, which is served in a tree house overlooking organic rice paddies. 

Chatham Bars Inn, Massachusetts

Shark-spotting base: Chatham Bars Inn.
Shark-spotting base: Chatham Bars Inn.
Photo by Chatham Bars Inn

Fear becomes admiration when a research-driven tour illuminates the pivotal role sharks play in keeping oceans healthy and balanced. Guests of Cape Cod’s 217- room Chatham Bars Inn can shadow Atlantic White Shark Conservancy scientists as they seek to identify and potentially tag individual great whites, with the twin goals of protecting the public and inspiring conservation.

Sonora Resort, Canada

Sonora’s pristine setting. 
Sonora’s pristine setting. 
Photo by Sonora Resort 
Members of the Homalco First Nation have lived alongside the Orford River on British Columbia’s coast for generations, so they make ideal guides for a grizzly-viewing expedition here. Guests listen to Homalco stories and learn about local ecology as they watch bears feed on spawning salmon from platforms along the river – close enough to make hearts race but far enough away to ensure the safety of watchers and watched. The outing, offered to guests at the 88-room Sonora Resort on Sonora Island, is part of the property’s collaborations with its indigenous neighbors.

andBeyond Phinda Private Game Reserve, South Africa

andBeyond’s rhino conservation efforts. 
andBeyond’s rhino conservation efforts. 
Photo by andBeyond Phinda Private Game Reserve

Nearly poached to extinction for their horns, rhinos are benefiting from anti- poaching efforts in South Africa. Be part of the movement during a conservation safari at 56-room andBeyond Phinda Private Game Reserve. A veterinary team searches via helicopter for a specific rhino, while travelers in a safari vehicle, led by an expert ranger, follow. Once the animal is located and darted, guests assist the team as they notch the sleeping rhino’s ear for research, place microchips in the horn and body for identification, and take measurements, horn shavings, and skin samples for DNA analysis. All proceeds go toward the cost of running Phinda’s rhino conservation and management project.

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