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Responsible tourism Awards

Best accommodation for local communities

best accommodation for local communities
A hotel, lodge or other accommodation with a positive impact on the local supply chain and local people.

This could be a B&B, tipi, hotel, camp site, ecolodge, cave hotel, organic farm, homestay, renovated barn, ski lodge, hostel, treehouse, villa, chalet or any other type of accommodation.

Winner: Soria Moria Boutique Hotel, Cambodia
Soria Moria Boutique Hotel is named after the Norwegian fairytale Soria Moria Castle, which is often interpreted as being about individual paths to perfect happiness. For its employees, fairytales can come true, as its exemplary employee training programme supports staff from entry level jobs right up to management positions.

General Manager Sam Sokha started out as a dishwasher at Norwegian owner Kristin Holdø Hansen's first guesthouse. The only English she knew was how to introduce herself. With the support of the Soria Moria Employee Elevator programme she is now studying for her Masters in Business Administration (MBA).

The judges were impressed both that all the hotel's employees are local, including management positions, and by their innovative Employee Ownership Scheme through which the local employees have become partners and majority owners in the business with 51% of the shares.

Awards winner

Highly commended:
La Villa Bethany (India)
Bulungula Lodge (South Africa)

Read more about our 2012 winners in the official Awards newspaper.

Previous winners

Winner: Fauzi Azar Inn, Israel
"This 200 year old Arab mansion-turned guest house is the vision of Maoz Inon. Set in the old town of Nazareth, the largest Arab city in Israel, the opening of the Inn has helped to facilitate interaction between tourists and locals - part of Maoz' goal to transform a neglected area through tourism and promote communication across boundaries of race and religion in the Middle East. The Inn has designed, produced and distributed 50,000 maps of Nazareth to enable exploration of the old town, and organises a free tour experienced by 2,500 people per year."

Highly commended:
Semadep Safari Camp, Kenya

Winner: Hotel Punta Islita, Costa Rica
"Hotel Punta Islita is culturally embedded in the local community and fully Costa Rican owned. 60% of all hotel guests visit their Contemporary Art Museum, bringing in £100k to local artists. 52% of the money that the hotel generates stays in the local community, helps to combat urban migration, and has nurtured a steady growth of micro-enterprises including seafood processing plants, restaurants and cafes, retail stores, furniture workshops, and tour operators."

Highly commended:
Cuyaqui Wayi Vicos, Peru
Huaorani Ecolodge, Ecuador
Jungle Bay Resort & Spa, Dominica

Best small hotel / accommodation

Awarded between 2006 and 2009, this category was for hotel, lodge or other accommodation with fewer than 50 rooms making a positive impact on local communities and the environment.

Winner: Rivertime Resort and Ecolodge, Laos
“Rivertime Resort and Ecolodge established themselves in what was, once again, an incredibly competitive category this year. The ‘Agreement of Cooperation’ between the Lodge and the three local villages is a real rarity in this sector – a contract that sets out the rights and responsibilities of the company to maximising benefits for the local community, making contractual obligations of key responsible tourism principles.”

Highly commended:
Beechenhill Farm, England
Napo Wildlife Center, Ecuador

Winner: Nkwichi Lodge, Mozambique
For demonstrating what a small, privately-owned, luxury eco-tourist lodge can contribute through a $5 bed night levy, and for their role in the creation of the Umoji Association representing 20,000 local people through their chiefs and elected representatives. One of the first large community associations in Mozambique, it has enabled six communities to secure their land rights certificates from the Government.

Highly commended:
Our Native Village, India,
Cottage Lodge, UK
Safari Garden Hotel, The Gambia

Winner: Finca Esperanza Verde Ecolodge, Nicaragua
“For using tourism to generate local, economic development in a rural area of Nicaragua by improving infrastructure as well as creating employment and enterprise opportunities and demonstrating what a positive difference tourism can make in a local community.”

Highly commended:
Papillote Wilderness Retreat, Dominica
Lamai Homestay & Guesthouse, Thailand

Winner: Il Ngwesi Community Lodge, Kenya
“Run and managed by the Ilaikipiak Maasai Il Ngwesi community. A successful cohabitation system of both wildlife and humans that live, ‘share’ and own the area. 40% of profits go to the 600 plus families that have a share in owning the lodge. The success of Il Ngwesi has served as a model for other communities in Northern Kenya.”

Highly commended:
Posada Amazonas Lodge, Peru
Sukau Rainforest Lodge, Malaysia

Best hotel

Awarded between 2004 and 2005, this category was for hotel, lodge or other accommodation making a positive impact on local communities and the environment.

Winner: Nihiwatu Resort, Indonesia
Selected for its exceptional relationship with the local community.

Highly commended:
Bird Island, Seychelles
The Boat Landing Guesthouse, Laos

Winner: Casuarina Beach Club, Barbados
The winner was selected for its employment of disabled people, initiatives to benefit the poor and outstanding environmental performance.

Highly Commended:
Hilton Hotels, UK