9009114289?profile=originalChoosing to stay at eco-friendly hotels when you travel is a great way to help the planet. Now there is a simply way to make greener travel choices. The travel review website TripAdvisor has devised a certification program to help people make environmental travel choices to stay at eco-friendly accommodations around the world.

Called TripAdvisor GreenLeaders, the program awards badges at different status levels to eco-friendly hotels, lodges and B&Bs, from budget to luxury, that are all committed to environmental practices like recycling, serving local and organic food, water and electricity conservation, etc.

Costa Rica is known as being the “birthplace of eco-tourism in Latin America” and for its eco-conscious hotels. The environmentally-friendly Playa Nicuesa Rainforest Lodge in Southern Costa Rica has been awarded the highest level of Platinum in the prestigious TripAdvisor GreenLeaders program.

9008949472?profile=originalThe eco-friendly lodge in the Osa Peninsula region is set on a 165-acre private reserve that borders the lush rainforest of the Piedras Blancas National Park and fronts the pristine coastline of the gulf of Golfo Dulce in the Pacific Ocean.

Playa Nicuesa Rainforest Lodge holds the highest level of sustainability – 5 Leaves – in the national Certificate of Sustainable Tourism program by the Costa Rica Tourism Board. This sustainable tourism program recognizes businesses that comply with a sustainable model of natural, cultural and social resource management.

9009114690?profile=originalTripAdvisor GreenLeaders hotels have met a set of environmental standards developed for TripAdvisor by a leading environmental consulting firm, with input from international green industry experts such as the U.S. Green Building Council's LEED Certification Program, the United Nations Environment Program, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's ENERGY STAR program.

The more eco-friendly practices a hotel has in place, the higher its GreenLeader level, which range from Bronze, Silver, and Gold to Platinum. Playa Nicuesa Rainforest Lodge’s highest level, Platinum, means it has met GreenLeaders’ minimum requirements plus has achieved a 60% score or higher.

TripAdvisor’s GreenLeaders program not only helps educate consumers to make eco-friendly choices; it also encourages hotels to be more eco-minded. More than 8,000 hotels are already participating worldwide in the voluntary program.

To see if a hotel is a GreenLeader on TripAdvisor, look at the top menu under a hotel’s name on their TripAdvisor page to see their awards.

Article by Shannon Farley

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