Amboseli Serena Safari Lodge named Ecotourism Enterprise of the Year 2011
30th November, 2011
Amboseli Serena Safari Lodge has been crowned Eco Tourism Enterprise of the year 2011. The announcement was made during the Annual Eco Tourism Awards Gala Dinner held on Friday 25th November 2011 by Ecotourism Kenya.The Ecotourism Awards seeks to reward individuals and corporates who have excelled in promoting sustainable tourism through business and best practices, and through involvement with the local communities around the areas in which they operate.
Earlier this year, Amboseli Serena Safari Lodge was recognizedwith a Silver and Bronze Certification in eco rating for promoting sustainable tourism over the years and similarly, by World Kenya’s leading Safari Lodge by the prestigious World Travel Awards asKenya’s Leading Safari Lodge.
So what makes Amboseli Serena an Ecotourism Enterprise?
The secret lies in our innovations for responsible tourism and business practices, among them being, reforestation, environmental training, waste management, power generation, water conservations, and giving back to the local community. Amboseli Serena Safari Lodge has an active Corporate Social Responsibility programthat ensures a competitive advantage for the lodge as it markets itself as a leader in ecotourism, a form of travel that has become an extremely popular marketing trend within the industry. The lodge is determined to bring back the ‘green’ Amboseli National Park and conserve water sources like the Ngong Narok swamp and reduce dust- which means clean air for all!
The Amboseli National Park ecosystem has suffered a huge amount of tree cover loss over the years. As such, the management of Amboseli Serena Safari Lodge has engaged in tree planting activities in and around the lodge involving guests, staff and surrounding communities, giving them an opportunity to participate in the rehabilitation of this ecosystem, through the replacement of trees destroyed by elephants, wind or human activity. Each guest participant is issued with a certificate for planting a tree. To date more than 2Million seedlings have taken root, a fact that was highly applauded by the Ecotourism Kenya Chief Executive Officer Kahindi Lekalhaile during the gala dinner where he said, “no lodge in Kenya has planted over 200,000 trees within a park and over 2Million trees around the community where it operates”. The project is a success story known globally and is one of the most ambitious conservation initiatives of its kind ever started and fully funded by a lodge in Kenya.
In keeping with the continuous need to understand and protect the environment in which it operates, Amboseli Serena Safari Lodge offers environmental training toboth staff and the communities around the lodge in a bid to create understanding of the importance of environmental responsibility. Besides this, an onsite naturalist- who is based at the lodge provides training to all staff members on environmental policies and practices. These communities also benefit from clean drinking water, free medical consultations, ante-natal services and subsidized medication through an on-site medical clinic. The local culture and traditions of the surrounding communities have also been heavily incorporated in the outlay of the rooms, door handles, towel racks and other wall adornments integrated to give our guests the opportunity to explore and understand the local Maasai culture more intimately.
Any environmental story is never complete without conservation. Being in remote area, Amboseli Serena Safari Lodge is not connected to the national electricity grid and therefore has to generate their own electricity, which is mainly done by diesel powered generators. In an effort to reduce fuel usage and noise and air pollution, an inverter system has been installed to supplement the existing generators. To conserve and control water usage, the lodge is fitted with water meters and the amount of water being drawn from local water sources is measured daily.Garbage at the lodge is sorted and sent back to Nairobi for handling by professional garbage disposal companies. Glass and plastic are recycled while non-recyclable matter is disposed in the most environmentally friendly manner. Wet waste is retained at the lodge and composted for use as manure in the flower gardens.
For this lodge that is situated in the heart of Amboseli National park, which also happens to be one of the world’s famous national parks, the story does not end here. “All 38 years of operation at the park have made a great story of our journey towards achieving world class safari experiences in the best environment possible, but it is not the end yet. We want that when the story is complete, it will be written with a ‘green pen’…it will show future generations that a good environment is good for all, and hopefully they will take it from our hands and move it to the next level”, said the lodge manager Mr. Herman Mwasaghua.
Notes to Editor:
- Serena Hotel’s portfolio currently comprises a collection of 25 luxury hotels, resorts and safari lodges in some of the most exquisite locations in Kenya, Mainland Tanzania, Zanzibar, Mozambique, Uganda and Rwanda.
- Serena also owns and manages properties in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Tajikistan.
- TPS Serena Hotels is an affiliate company of the Aga Khan Fund for Economic Development (AKFED). AKFED promotes tourism by building, rehabilitating and managing hotels and lodges that contribute to economic growth in an environmentally and culturally sensitive manner.
For more information call:
Victoria Nyamunga | Serena Hotels
4th Floor, Williamson House, 4th Ngong Avenue, P.O. Box 48690 GPO, 00100 - Nairobi, Kenya, East Africa
Tel: +254 20 284 2238 Fax: +254 20 271 8103 Mobile: +254 734 699 868