A good, cash-burning vacation is meant to be over the top.
We trade meetings and emails in cramped rooms for crab legs and champagne in massive ones, because living luxuriously for a few days is worth it for us, in the end.
Only, it's not usually worth it for the planet. In the US alone, hotels spend $7.5B on energy each year. They release more CO2 emissions into the atmosphere than 19 volcanic eruptions. That is patently absurd.
And the super nice ones, the ones that go the extra mile to make sure you and just 12 other guests have the run of the island, are the worst offenders. Which is why Kudadoo Maldives Private Island, a completely sustainable (and crazy luxurious) resort in The Maldives is such a literal breath of fresh air.
kudadoo (5 images)
Designed by New York-based architecture firm Yuji Yamazaki, and located in Lhaviyani Atoll, Kudadoo uses a roofed cabana clad in solar panels to power an entire 7.5-acre island. The 320-kW system is strategically arranged in rows that allow for natural light to filter in below (making sure lights don't have to be powered in the main cabana) and are pretty prominently placed. The message: no need for discretion. Energy saving and luxury can, and should, work in tandem.
Elsewhere around the resort, one'll find timber from sustainably sourced forests in Canada and Indonesia, Tasmanian Oak floors and villas primed for five hours of natural shade each day. Oh, and they come with plunge pools outdoor decks and all the usual fixings, too.
For more information on booking a stay at Kudadoo (FYI, one-bedroom bungalows start at $4,000 a night for two), head here.
All images from Kudadoo Maldives Private Island