News

Gondwana's Newsroom

Namib Desert Lodge – ecological awesomeness!

Avatar of inke inke - 25. November 2017 - Gondwana Collection, Environment

A hospitality business which is environmentally sustainable and goes easy on resources: Namib Desert Lodge.

Namib Desert Lodge has set new standards with its excellent results at the Eco Awards, the leading seal of quality for environmental sustainability in Namibia. This year’s awards were presented yesterday (24 November 2017) at a gala dinner hosted by the Hospitality Association of Namibia.  

The five desert flowers for Namib Desert Lodge represent the maximum score (100%) in terms of conservation and guiding, energy, water, staff and health, legal and NTB compliance as well as further excellent scores for management, waste, pollution and sewer, building and landscaping, and social responsibility. 

For a large hospitality establishment like Namib Desert Lodge, which is part of the Gondwana Collection, such results cannot be taken for granted. Picturesquely located at the foot of the fossilised dunes of the primeval Namib, the lodge boasts 65 rooms (140 beds), more than 80 employees and Gondwana’s highest occupancy rate (2017: Namib Desert Lodge 65%, Gondwana Group average 60%). So far, five desert flowers have only been awarded to much smaller accommodation establishments.  

For clean energy generation a solar system was installed at Namib Desert Lodge already back in 2014. It covers about 50 percent of the electricity requirement. A water recycling plants provides the water for the gardens. As far as possible the lodges’ grounds have been planted with indigenous trees, shrubs and succulents which thrive on small quantities of water. Waste is sorted into different materials, and efforts are made to dispose of it in an environmentally sustainable manner. Furthermore, Gondwana introduced glass crushers which enable the lodges to recycle their glass waste in a sustainable way. 

Namib Desert Lodge is located in Gondwana Namib Park (127 km²) in the immediate vicinity of the Namib Sand Sea, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Thoroughly thought-out environmental management plans, a scientifically substantiated wildlife program and competent guides ensure that guests of Namib Desert Lodge are able to experience the oldest desert on earth in all its splendour. 

The Eco Awards experts and panel also awarded high marks for personnel management and social responsibility. The Gondwana Group supports the enhancement of its employees’ skills and competence with its own academy and training courses, especially in the fields of hospitality and environmental protection. The staff of Gondwana Desert Lodge also benefits from regular visits by Gondwana’s trusted partners in healthcare, such as the Namibian Cancer Association CAN as well as ELCAP (HIV/Aids education) and a mobile clinic. The many local products which are on offer in the souvenir shop also show that Namib Desert Lodge is playing its part when it comes to social responsibility.        

The Gondwana Collection combines its hospitality business with nature conservation and social commitment in a sustainable manner. Last year, all the Gondwana accommodation establishments which were reassessed after two or three years were awarded five desert flowers, the highest seal of quality. They are Canyon Roadhouse, Canyon Lodge and Canyon Village, as well as Etosha Safari Lodge and Etosha Safari Camp. In 2016, Hakusembe River Lodge participated in the Eco Awards for the first time and instantly achieved an environmental compatibility rating of four desert flowers. 

Participation in the Eco Awards is voluntary. Lodges that register for evaluation receive an extensive catalogue of possible measures for introducing eco-friendly ways to their operations. Participants are free to decide which steps they want to take. An independent evaluator inspects the lodges and sends his report to the panel who then decides on the evaluation. Similar to the grading with stars for accommodation establishments, up to five desert flowers are awarded under the eco seal of quality.

New comment

0 comments

Stay up-to-date with our monthly 'Gondwana Tracks' Newsletter Sign up Today