Earth Day Spotlight: 8 Resorts Featuring Eco-Friendly Dining

These hotels and resorts are dishing out delicious -- and environmentally friendly -- F&B creations. 

Ecofriendly Food Hotels Earth Day
The farmstand at 1 Hotel South Beach features fresh foods and unique products from local farmers and artisans Photo Credit:1 Hotel South Beach

Luxurious incentive getaways and group conference destinations don't have to harm the environment. Across the globe, many hotels are committed to preserving their habitat and the surrounding world by providing guests with eco-friendly experiences — particularly when it comes to cuisine

In honor of Earth Day, following are eight green hotels and resorts serving up something sweet, savory and sustainable in the kitchen. 

8 Hotels with Eco-Friendly Dining Options

1. Harraseeket Inn, Freeport, Maine

Located in the coastal village of Freeport, the Harraseeket Inn obtains all of the ingredients -- like goat cheese, fresh raspberries and organic fare trade coffee -- for its two critically acclaimed restaurants from local purveyors, helping the community and preserving traditional farming. 

Leftover food from the Maine Harvest Restaurant and the Broad Arrow Tavern is composted for reuse on the property. Green Seal-certified cleaning products, biodegradable straws and a glass bottles-only policy provide eco-conscious guests with the right mix of comfort and green momentum. 

Menu Highlights:
  • Cast iron-seared scallops with ginger sweet potatoes, wilted greens and bacon-fig brown butter
  • Thick-cut New York strip with onion purée, crispy potato and Cabernet bacon sauce
2. Six Senses Douro Valley, Lamego, Portugal

This 19th-century manor house set in the rolling hills of Portugal's Douro Valley has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage site. The 20-acre resort features 57 rooms designed with eco-friendly materials, and it offers three restaurants. An organic garden of vegetables and herbs sits right on the property. Fresh ingredients are harvested only as needed to maintain a balance of freshness and flavor.

Fresh-baked breads and traditional dishes are made in the wood-fired oven, which uses logs obtained from pruning and cleaning the property's trees. 

Menu Highlights: 
  • The Wine Library & Terrace offers local charcuterie, tapas and an extensive wine list.
  • Pickles Restaurant creates its own ingredients using natural techniques and boasts premium organic and biodynamic wines.
3. Harbour House Hotel, Ganges, BC, Canada

Situated along the Niagara River on the last 17 acres of a former family farm, Harbour House Hotel allows guests to revel in the rich port town's history with nearby sailing and fishing charters, fantastic waterfront birdwatching and a golf course with views of Lake Ontario. 

The hotel grows more than 70 varieties of produce and syrup from more than 100 maple trees, and other ingredients come home-raised bees, chickens and lamb. The kitchen's waste cooking oil is converted into clean-burning biofuel.

Menu Highlights: 
  • Slow-braised New Zealand lamb shank with Moroccan spiced vegetable couscous, smoked tomato relish and Merlot veal reduction
  • Canadian Angus beef tenderloin with pomme purée, sweet pepper preserve, Bleu cheese, and Bordelaise -- a sauce made with red wine, bone marrow, butter, shallots and demi-glaze
4. Oyster Box Hotel, Umhlanga Rocks, South Africa

Nestled along Umhlanga’s beachfront and overlooking the Indian Ocean and a nearby lighthouse, Oyster Box is steadfast on maintaining the local land. "We are committed to our community and dedicated to social responsibility," the hotel's website says.

Instead of disposing of older towels, linens, books and other reusable items, the hotel donates them to local at-risk youth. Whether guests choose to dine in the private wine cellar, in the high tea salon or one of the 11 curry buffets, all menus feature locally sourced ingredients. The hotel has also banned plastic straws. 

Menu Highlights:
  • Singapore fish curry with peanut and mint raita (a yogurt-based condiment) 
  • Mozambican pink crab with mushroom and garlic cream 
5. The Pines Lodge - A Rock Resort, Avon, Colo.

This 60-room property at the Beaver Creek ski area features the AAA Four Diamond-winning Grouse Mountain Grill restaurant, which serves many dishes made with locally sourced ingredients. According to the resort's website, "Our chef is passionate about serving local meats and produce from family farms and ranches in the valley, culinarily connecting our guests to the mountain in a new way entirely." Their menu changes seasonally to highlight local harvests. 

Trained to help guests calculate their carbon impact, the hotel staff can provide tips on reducing guests' footprint  during their stay. 

Menu Highlights:
  • Cornmeal-crusted Rocky Mountain trout with hand-made gnocchi, basil pesto, sugarsnap peas and heirloom tomatoes
  • Braised pork short ribs with carrot purée, sautéed spinach and confit shallots

6. Il Salviatino, Florence, Italy

This Florence locale dedicates a portion of its surrounding park, once a historical orchard, to a fruit, vegetable and herb garden whose bounty is used as needed in the hotel's restaurant. "We want our kitchen to be as tied to its territory and to the seasons as possible," the hotel's website explains. Chef Carmine Calò emphasizes that he wants guests to taste earthy, raw flavors in his dishes.

Just a 15-minute walk from downtown Florence, Il Salviatino offers stunning views of the Tuscan landscape. 

Menu Highlights:
  • Gnocchi with pumpkin, a creamy mushroom sauce and caper salt
  • Piglet with green tomatoes, Jerusalem artichokes and black-tea sauce
7. Finca Rosa Blanca Country Inn, Santa Barbara, Costa Rica

Part of a carbon-neutral coffee plantation, Finca Rosa Blanca offers a “Coffee, Chocolate & Cheese Trail” that guides guests through the places where the property sources its food and drinks. On the trail, guests make a number of stops, including at a meadery producing the beverages made with honey from the inn's own bees. 

Finca Rosa Blanca, a National Geographic Unique Lodge of the World, also focuses on recycling and regeneration, avoiding toxic chemicals and engaging in organic agriculture to reduce its ecological footprint and mitigate its impact on climate change. Over the last 25 years, the resort has planted more than 7,000 native trees.

Menu Highlights: 
  • Costa Rican pancakes served with local blackberry, sugarcane and coconut syrup and fresh tropical fruit
  • Grilled tuna with a chimichurri of cucumber and corn, herbed yogurt, grilled onions and cabbage with fresh tarragon
8. 1 Hotel South Beach, Miami Beach, Fla.

At 1 Hotel, room keys are made of recycled wood embellished with a friendly reminder to "recycle everything."

The lobby is home to a farm stand (pictured, top) that offers local produce for quick, healthy snacks, and each of the hotel's restaurants is run with a strong focus on sustainability. "We believe that all food should be good, clean and fair; delicious and nutritious food is a right," states the hotel's website. "Natural resources should be protected for future generations; people and the environment depend on one another."

On April 22, the resort will be hosting an Earth Day Sustainable Dinner party, complete with menu items like "miracle fruit" and "feral boar."

Menu Highlights:
  • Florida red snapper with mojo isleño (a Puerto Rican condiment), parmesan-crusted plantains and cilantro
  • A crab gazpacho made with heirloom tomatoes, red peppers, onion, garlic, sherry vinegar and extra virgin olive oil