Mayakoba Resort honored as world leader in sustainable tourism development

The Fairmont Mayakoba on the Riviera Maya

The Fairmont Mayakoba on the Riviera Maya. Credits: Mayakoba Resort

The United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) and Rainforest Alliance have honored Mayakoba Resort and developer OHL Desarrollos as a world leader in sustainable tourism development.

Mayakoba was presented with the prestigious UNWTO Ulysses Award under the “Innovation in Enterprises” section and garnered the award for  “Sustainable and Responsible Tourism Development.” The Ulysses Award celebrates tourism projects from around the world that are improving the positive social impact of the sector and taking a leading role in responsible, sustainable and universally accessible tourism.

Rainforest Alliance also honored Mayakoba Resort with the Sustainable Standard-Setter Award, and announced it as the first resort in Latin America to be recognized as a Rainforest Alliance Verified Destination. Mayakoba was selected for its commitment to conservation and outstanding leadership in efforts to improve the environment and local community outreach.

“We applaud Mayakoba for their commitment, which demonstrates that luxury travel can go hand in hand with environmental, economic and social sustainability,” said Daniel Katz, founder and board chair of the Rainforest Alliance. “Mayakoba sets a shining example for other resort groups in Mexico, and throughout the world, to follow.”

Located in the heart of Mexico’s Riviera Maya, Mayakoba sits on 593 acres of ecologically diverse land dotted with lagoons, mangrove forests, cenotes, canals, and white sand beaches.  The more than 148 acres of mangrove forests along the coastline provide an important refuge for nesting birds and shelter for thehatcheries of young fish and turtles. In order to protect the endangered trees, Mayakoba’s infrastructure is located behind the coastal mangrove forest, thus respecting its integrity and having allowed the forest to increase by 100 percent within a very short time period. Wildlife inhabitation has also increased from 35 species to more than 200.

Developers OHL Desarrollos began working with the RainforestAlliance in June of 2010 to implement a series of best management practices based upon the Global Sustainable Tourism Criteria, a list of internationally-recognized recommendations for socially, environmentally and economically sustainable tourism. The property’s three hotels – Rosewood, Fairmont and Banyan Tree – are linked by more than nine miles of crystal clear canals, a unique aquatic ecosystem for transporting guests that also offers new habitats for wildlife and relief for coastal environments. Each resort employs its own biologist, with whom guests can explore and learn.  A variety of measures have been implemented to ensure continued sustainability, including water and energy saving practices; promoting visits to local communities; and administering strong and well-documented sustainability policies and procedures.

Source / Fuente: www.examiner.com

Author / Autor:  , National Resort & Spa Examiner 

Date / Fecha: 14/12/11

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