A Treehouse Honeymoon in India

There are many ways you can get closer to nature on your eco-friendly honeymoon but you may not have considered spending some time at a tree house resort in India. India is a great place for a honeymoon, particularly if you want to avoid the busier cities. There are many tranquil resorts where you can stay in eco-friendly accommodations that are a lot more unusual than a standard hotel room!

Vythiri Resort, Wayanad

This resort is in Kerala and is very eco-friendly. Located in the heart of a rainforest, the views from the rooms are amazing. The location also means that you are well placed to find out more about the local wildlife and the conservation work that has been carried out here. Don’t be fooled into thinking that staying in a tree house means that you have to compromise on luxury. The accommodation here includes features such as Jacuzzis and plunge pools.

The Machan, Lonavala

This region is already a hit with those from Mumbai and Pune as a destination for a short break. The Machan resort is a luxury destination where you can enjoy comfort and style 40 feet above the ground. The resort is 100% off-grid and only sustainable materials were used to build it.

Tree House Hideaway, Bandhavgarh

The accommodation here has every modern convenience that you could want. In the heart of a tiger reserve, this is a great place to observe the local wildlife.  Local materials and craftsmen were used to create the resort, which offers air conditioned rooms and other amenities. The resort has been named as one of the top 100 in India.

Tree House Cottages, Manali

This is a family-run resort that offers you many different options for your stay. There is a vegetarian menu served by the resort or you can make use of your own kitchen to prepare your own meals. The resort can also arrange for you to go on one of several day trips to nearby attractions. Most of the accommodation is cottages but you can also choose to stay in a Swiss tent.

Vanya Tree House, Thekkady

With electricity generated by solar power and wind turbines, this eco-friendly resort is located in the Periyar Forest on a 12 acre site.  Guests can enjoy the local Kerala cuisine that is cooked on traditional wood burning stoves.  The water for the site is taken from a well and guests need to be careful with the amount of electricity that they use because the only supply is that which is generated on-site. This is a great place, not only if you want to get back to nature, but if you want to make sure you are conserving the Earth’s natural resources.

These are just a few of the treehouse resorts that are available in India. No matter which one you choose you can rest assured that your stay has not had a great impact on the environment.

 

Eco-friendly Wedding Details for 2017

So you want to plan your eco-friendly wedding this year?  With environmentally friendly products and services becoming much more popular, you might think that it would be easy to do this, but if you want to stay on trend there are a few things to take into consideration that will not damage the planet any further.

Wedding décor

Using recycled materials and locally produced items, you can dramatically reduce the environmental impact of your wedding. Try fresh flowers for decoration – these are biodegradable and can be taken home by guests at the end of the day.  The one thing you really need to avoid are balloons. While most people favor them because they are cheap, cheerful and easy to use, they are not the environment’s best friend. The actual rubber material used to make them is harmful for the environment and can easily end up in the water system where they can be consumed by fish and birds.  You could as an alternative, decorate the room with rented items such as parasols or create your own from recycled paper.

Eco-friendly confetti

While many people still use the less-than green variety of confetti, they love the idea of an environmentally-friendly version. Flower petals are the best choice here – they are biodegradable and let’s face it, they look much better in the wedding photos than tiny pieces of colored and coated paper. The paper version can actually be around much longer than you might think and it is so easy for it to be picked up by birds too.  You could make your own confetti. Why not get your own flower petals, dry them and then crush them so they are in fairly small pieces?  They retain the color and will still look great in the photos. You can mix it with birdseed too if you prefer – the birds will be attracted to the seed so it doesn’t just hang around on the pavements.  Don’t mix the petals with rice – this can be damaging if the birds pick it up.

A bird’s eye view

Up until a couple of years ago if you wanted aerial views of your wedding, you had to hire a helicopter.  Needless to say not many couples chose to go down this route, mainly because of the cost but some people were also mindful of the environmental considerations. However, this year aerial photos are going to be big news at all weddings and this is due mainly to the rise in popularity of the humble drone!  You can get aerial photos of your big day without seeing a spike in your carbon footprint – why not ask one of your guests?  There are a lot of people who own drones these days and the cost should also be fairly low.

Finally – don’t forget that recycled gold and jewelry are big news at the moment.  Ecoura can supply you with renewed gold rings that have not had a dramatic environmental or social impact.  

Eco-friendly Wedding Venues in Montana

The amazing scenery in the beautiful state of Montana lends itself very well to the perfect wedding photographs, so why not consider one of the eco-friendly hotels or resorts where you can not only hold your wedding, but enjoy a tranquil honeymoon too?

Mt Hood Organic Farms

Located just at the base of Mt Hood, this is a family run business in a very picturesque rural area. The farm has been hosting weddings for more than a decade. You can book a weekend wedding here between Memorial Day weekend and the start of October. There are both indoor and outdoor options at the farm for the ceremony and reception.  Catering can be provided by the farm and most of the ingredients used are seasonal and organic. The farm’s own event coordinator will work with the bride and groom to ensure that the big day goes smoothly, arranging every detail to meet with your expectations.

Element Bozeman

One of the most eco-friendly hotels in the city, Element Bozeman has been working hard to ensure that as many aspects of its day to day running are environmentally friendly. The hotel has been LEED certified because of its efforts in recycling and other green practices.  Waste reduction is an important part of this and there are energy efficient faucets and other fixtures that reduce the hotel’s energy consumption. The hotel’s kitchen has energy-efficient appliances and the hotel only uses eco-friendly cleaning products.

The hotel is ideal for the smaller wedding and has enough accommodation to ensure that every guest has somewhere comfortable to stay. All rooms include a kitchenette and breakfasts are complimentary.

The Resort at Paws Up

This Greenough venue is a very beautiful, rural venue. The Resort at Paws Up is one of the state’s most eco-friendly resorts with practices such as energy efficient appliances and lights, eco-friendly cleaning products, organic toiletries for the guests and sustainable farming of the surrounding land. Some of the guest accommodations are provided in safari-type tents – comfortable and almost carbon neutral at the same time.  Guests are provided with reusable water bottles to save on the use of plastics.

The staff at The Resort at Paws Up can help you to plan the perfect day, whether you want a rustic ceremony or a black tie event. The resort can also cater for weddings of all sizes, with The Great Angus Hall able to accommodate 200 people, but the venue also has the facilities to host weddings for as little as 30 people. The resort can also provide transportation to and from the nearest airport, reducing the need for guests to hire cars, therefore reducing the carbon footprint of your big day.

Whatever you are expecting for your big day, there is an eco-friendly resort or hotel in Montana that will suit your needs.  Why not talk to one of the event coordinators today and start making plans for the happiest day of your life?   

Green Wedding Trends for 2017

As you plan your 2017 wedding you may already have definite plans in mind for theme and how your big day can stay on the right side of eco-friendly. However, there are those who might just want a few hints and tips on what to expect in 2017 for the latest wedding trends and how to stay as green as possible.

Vintage style

The trend for vintage-style weddings has been around for a while and the good news is that this trend shows no sign of going anywhere anytime soon. Next year vintage style will ooze glamour, so if you want to stay fashionable make it big and bold.  If you opt for true vintage rather than reproduction you will be helping to keep your carbon footprint low.

Location with a twist

The choice of venue is very important if you want your wedding to be an event that your guests never forget and the trend for 2017 is to find a place with a beautiful outdoor setting or a very unique building.  Outdoor weddings can also help you to stay green as you will be making use of natural light, saving on energy consumption.

Get crafty!

One of the trends for the coming year is handcrafted invitations and calligraphy.  This is something that you can easily learn to do yourself and you can then make sure that the materials you use are recycled or at the very least recyclable. In fact, many wedding planners are encouraging couples to incorporate paper into the decorations and theme of the wedding, so paper flowers, for example, could be just one feature to consider.  It is low-cost and eco-friendly, so why not?

Local flavor

Look to your local area to find the flavors and trends for your wedding.  For example, couples in Vermont could be opting for maple syrup flavoring in some of the dishes for their menu, or for weddings in Utah you could feature buffalo on the menu. Staying local for your supplies is one of the easiest ways to stay eco-friendly.

Traditional cake

Recent trends for displays of cupcakes rather than traditional cakes are on the wane a little and now it seems that the traditional, tall, tiered cake is making its way back into fashion. Couples like the traditional style of the tall cake and it is great for making a feature out of your dessert table.  The cake often follows the color scheme of the wedding so consider this when planning how your cake is going to be decorated. Having it made locally will help you to stay as eco-friendly as possible.

These are just a few of the trends that you could consider when planning your 2017 wedding, although there are plenty of others too. Why not talk to a local wedding planner and find out which trends are proving to be most popular in your area?

Eco-friendly honeymoon destinations in Italy

Italy is one of the top destinations in the world for honeymooners, but what about those who want an eco-friendly honeymoon?  The good news is that there is no shortage of eco-friendly hotels and resorts where you can enjoy quality time with your husband or wife without worrying that your time there is going to leave a dent on the future of the planet!

Luxury in Milan

Located on the Via dell’Orso, the Hotel Milano Scala claims to be the city’s first zero-emission hotel. The hotel has a 4 star rating and it has a very private feel, given that it has just 62 rooms.  Right in the heart of the city, the hotel is in the perfect location for those who want to explore the city, with some of the main attractions within an easy walking distance. The hotel also has a number of suites available for those who want more space and the hotel guarantees that there are no CO2 emissions to pollute the atmosphere.

The hotel planners have taken steps to ensure that the heating and air conditioning are both eco-friendly. There is an automated system that controls the heating and cooling of the building and keeps energy consumption to a minimum.

Luxury on Lake Garda

Located on Lake Garda, the Lefay Resort & Spa Lago di Garda is in the heart of one of the most beautiful areas of Italy.  The hotel has around 11 hectares of terraces and gardens that lead down to the lake and with 93 rooms and suites, there is plenty of accommodation for you to choose from. The spa is one of the biggest attractions of the hotel and it is a great place for you to relax, feel pampered and recharge your batteries.

The structure of the hotel has been designed to fit into the hillsides so the energy requirements are not the same as they are for other buildings. The windows of the hotel have been designed with athermic glass so they can help to heat and cool the building as needed. The hotel has been constructed with natural materials that have been sourced locally. The use of biomass, turbines and an absorption cooling system all help to keep the hotel as eco-friendly as possible. The hotel has also published details on the percentage of energy that is generated on-site and details of the reduction on carbon emissions.

These are just two of the eco-friendly establishments in beautiful Italy where you could enjoy the honeymoon of your dreams, but there are many more that you could consider.  Why not head for the Alps in the north or to the beautiful coast?  With so many amazing locations for your honeymoon you could even consider a tour.  Italy is one of the most perfect honeymoon destinations, especially if you are keen to stay green!  

Break with Tradition for an Eco-Friendly Honeymoon in Ecuador

Planning your honeymoon does not mean that you have to spend your time at a luxury resort soaking up the sun – you could head off the beaten track a little and do some exploring.  Did you ever consider a honeymoon in South America?  Countries like Ecuador have so much to offer, particularly if you are concerned at all about your carbon footprint.

A number of travel companies run tours so that you can have a fixed itinerary for your stay or you can just book your own flights and hotels and do your own thing.

The quaint capital

The capital city is Quito, located at the foot of Pichincha, the volcano. It is surrounded by mountains and hills and is packed with old monasteries, Colonial churches and architecture that blends various influences from the history of the city including Spanish and Flemish. Just 22km from the Equator, why not take a trip there?  You get to stand across the line and you can then say you were in both the northern and southern hemispheres at the same time!

Jungle living

As part of your trip you can spend a little time in the Amazonian jungle. This part of the world is very sparsely populated but if you are staying in one of the eco-lodges in the area it is easily accessible. Often these are only accessible by flying from Quito, so you will feel truly remote. The Kapawi Ecolodge and Reserve was constructed with the local architecture style in mind – the buildings were put together without using any nails!  

During your stay at the lodge you can choose from different excursion types, depending upon how fit you are.  The easy program includes short hikes and the opportunity to spend time with some of the indigenous people.  The moderate program will take you a little further into the rainforest, out on canoes and give you the chance to visit the local communities. Occasionally you may stay overnight with one of the Achuar communities or in a tent. The last option is not for the faint-hearted!  The difficult routes will often see you spending several days at a time out in the jungle.  You may get the chance to visit parts of the jungle that have seen very few visitors so expect to be carrying your own food and other supplies.

Kapawi accommodation

The ecolodges have bathrooms that have a solar-heated water supply and solar power is used to supply much of the energy that the lodges need.  Toiletries and other products in use at the lodges are biodegradable and there is a policy of recycling everything possible from glass to plastic. Your time here is almost carbon neutral, so spending your honeymoon here carries much less guilt than most destinations you could consider!     

What does being green really mean?

Going green is not something that people do simply for their wedding day – it can be something that you apply to every aspect of your life, depending upon how dedicated you want to be and how much of a difference you want to make. You could find yourself making just a few changes or major alterations to your lifestyle!

Being eco-friendly

If you don’t want your lifestyle to have a damaging effect on the planet then you need to look at how you might be able to reduce your carbon footprint. Do you always use your car for short journeys when you could easily walk or use public transport? Do you buy a lot of things that have been imported from other countries? Using your car less and buying locally-produced goods are just two easy changes that you can make to your lifestyle that will lessen your impact on the planet.

From there you will find it easier to make other changes. Your home’s energy consumption, for example. Do you find that you pay a lot for electricity usage? Chances are it is just because you are not vigilant about minor points like switching off appliances when they are not being used. Not only is this going to be better for your bank balance, the environment will thank you for it too!

Reduce, re-use, recycle

There are three words that can help you to become a much more environmentally-friendly person.

  • Reduce – cut back on the things that you use that are not absolutely essential. When you go to the store, for example, buy loose fruits and vegetables rather than pre-packed and you don’t have to worry about excess packaging that is definitely less than eco-friendly!
  • Re-use – If you can keep something and use it over and over again rather than throw it away after one use you will help to reduce your carbon footprint
  • Recycle – this is very important.  Recycling items means that less energy is used to make completely new items.  Plastic, paper, glass and cardboard can all be easily recycled and now most towns offer collections for recyclables – take advantage of this and make a difference.

Special occasions

Once you make small changes it is so much easier to plan for the greener aspects of special occasions like your wedding day.  Invitations from recycled paper, a menu of local and organic produce, green transport for you and your guests and sustainable materials used for the dress and other outfits and you should have the makings of a day that is not going to leave you feeling guilty about climate change.

For every person, having a greener way of life is going to be different. The important thing is to take that first step and then all the others that follow will be so much easier. Learn more about how Ecoura is committed to protecting the planet.

Your wedding – be green after the event!

So your big day has come and gone and you are starting to think about the impact of it all.  Maybe you did not consider green issues while you were planning your wedding but that does not mean that you can’t make a difference afterwards.  Not many people think about the big clean-up because they are so excited about the day itself, but a little careful thought means that you can offset your wedding’s carbon footprint.

Décor

Did you arrange things like floral centerpieces and room decorations yourself?  If you hired a company to deal with decorations for you then they will usually be responsible for taking them away and they will be reused at another wedding, making them less damaging to the environment than you might think. If you have purchased decorative items such as cake stands then it is easy enough to give or sell them on to someone else so that they can be used again.

Floral decorations obviously have a fairly short lifespan so you cannot simply expect them to be used by another bride, unless you have opted for silk flowers and you can pass them on.  However, most people prefer to have real flowers at a wedding.  You can give these to people as they are leaving. Most bridesmaids and members of the bridal party are happy to take home a floral decoration or two. Remember that real flowers are biodegradable so even with their short lifespan they are unlikely to have a major impact on the environment.

Clothes

There are many ways of recycling your wedding outfits.  The bridal gown and bridesmaids dresses can be sold on or given away so that they can be used again.  There are charity organizations that will use the fabric from the dresses to make other items, including gowns for stillborn babies, so why not consider putting the dresses to good use?  The same applies to shoes.  The shoes are generally bought just for that one day so they have very little wear and tear on them.  Sell them online or pass them on to a nearby thrift store.  The groom, best man and ushers’ outfits are usually on hire so they can just be returned to the store.

General waste disposal

Often it is too late the next day to make sure that things like empty bottles are recycled but most wedding venues have different trash containers so that people will know where everything should go, but if you are faced with a reception venue that you have to return to the next morning to do the cleaning you can make sure that anything that is recyclable is separated from the rest of the trash.

Making your wedding day green is definitely much easier to do when you are in the planning stages, but that does not mean all is lost if you wait until afterwards – take a greener approach to the clean-up and you can still make a difference.

Eco-friendly Honeymoons in France

When you want a romantic honeymoon then there are few destinations which conjure up the image of romance more than France.  Home to what is widely considered to be the world’s most romantic city, Paris, France offers the chilled-out and laid-back way of life that you need when enjoying your first few days of married life.  However, for an eco-friendly honeymoon, there are plenty of options available to you outside of the capital city.

Woodland life in the Dordogne

Why not enjoy the peaceful life in a Woodsman’s Cabin in one of the most beautiful areas of the country?  The remote setting ensures you will not be disturbed and it has everything that you need for your stay.  The wood-burning stove heats the water and the cabin is lit by oil light or candle.  When on your honeymoon champagne and flowers are part of the package and transport is provided in the form of a tandem. Breakfasts are provided and you can enjoy activities such as canoeing or touring the vineyards. For those who want total seclusion this option is perfect.

Auvergne guest house

Head to central France to the region of Auvergne where you will find an eco-friendly guest house or two.  Try Les Liards, where you can hike in the beautiful countryside.  The guest house itself has been carefully constructed using traditional building methods and eco-friendly materials.  Located in the Livradois-Forez regional park, it is perfect for those who love the outdoors life.

The most romantic city in the world!

Paris is a must for those wanting a romantic break but you can also find an eco-friendly option here.  The Hotel Gavarni is close to main attractions such as the Eiffel Tower and the Champs-Elysées and uses only renewable energy sources, is now carbon neutral and only eco-friendly products are used throughout the hotel.  The food is organic and fair trade and as a result of all its efforts to be greener, the hotel has become the first independent hotel in the city to achieve the European Ecolabel, a quality standard for eco-friendly businesses.

A Normandy valley

La Maison du Vert is located in Ticheville in Lower Normandy and is ideal for those who like the great outdoors.  The restaurant is vegetarian and vegan, with many ingredients grown in the hotel’s own gardens.  Organic drinks are served in the bar and the grounds are a mix of landscaped and wild areas.  Cycling is a popular activity in the area and the hotel has two bicycles that can be used by guests at no extra charge.

For honeymoons France might seem like a long way to travel but the rewards are clear when you get there.  The chance to relax in beautiful surroundings that will not make much (if any!) impact on your carbon footprint should not be missed.

Tips on Eco-Friendly Wedding Jewelry

ecourabridalGetting eco-friendly wedding jewelry is not as difficult as you might think.  Industry leading eco-friendly jewelry manufacturer Ecoura utilizes renewed gold and other materials to produce beautiful pieces of jewelry that you will be happy to wear forever. There are a few ways to make sure that you get something that is truly ethical and eco-friendly.

Stones

Vintage stones are one option for those who do not want to wear unethical items. Retro jewelry is considered to be very on-trend at the moment and is a great alternative to buying new items.

There are also certification programs that you can check to make sure that the stones that your jeweler is using come from an ethical source. Your jeweler should also be happy to discuss the source of your stones with you too, so if you have any doubts make sure you ask!

Gold

The melting and refining process of renewed gold means that it offers the same quality as new gold. As many gold mines have an open-pit design the damage to the environment can be far more destructive than you think. Not many people realize that up to 30 tons of rock can be destroyed to find enough gold to make one ring.  Ecoura’s renewed gold jewelry is a great option if you prefer to leave the rock where nature intended!

Go a little off-beat

Did you consider wood for your wedding jewelry? Not many people do, but this is a real eco-friendly option. There are designs out there that include strands of braided silver and some eco-friendly diamonds so you do not have to give up on the idea of wearing jewelry that will make an impact on your big day.

Finding your eco-friendly jeweler is actually much easier than you might think.  A few minutes spent with Google will bring you many alternatives in your local area.  Make sure you ask them what they can offer you that is eco-friendly and ask as many questions as you can about their material sources.

Remember that your wedding day jewelry and in particular your wedding ring should last a lifetime. Why compromise with a cheap alternative when you can get quality statement pieces. like those from Ecoura, that are guilt-free and designed to last for years?