Shangri-La hotels and resorts all over the world are dedicated to Rooted in Nature, the group’s commitment to sustainable and locally-sourced ingredients. We are proud of all of our properties who excel in the initiative, and we are especially honored when those properties are recognized for their efforts.
Recently, the 2015 World Responsible Tourism Awards nominated Shangri-La’s Villingili Resort & Spa, Maldives in the category "Best Hotel for Local Sourcing" for its partnership with local farmers and creation of the Addu Meedhoo Cooperative Society. Today, the society comprises 93 farmers who produce locally-grown vegetables and fruits that are sold back to the resort. The resort has extended a total of US $15,900 to the cooperative to build greenhouses to enable the farmers to grow the produce year-round.
As the farmers’ main distribution channel for their local products, the resort contributes to the economic development of the Addu Atoll and the Meedhoo community. Since the initial agreement in 2010, the resort has purchased over 233,000 kilograms (over 507,000 pounds) of fruit and vegetables. The resort has also increased its yearly purchase of produce from 10,200 kilograms (almost 22,500 pounds) in 2010 to 66,911 kilograms (over 147,500 pounds) in 2014.
The World Responsible Tourism Awards recognize “the most inspiring and enduring responsible tourism experiences in the world.” Over the past decade, the Awards have received over 14,500 nominations. In August, Shangri-La’s Villingili Resort & Spa, Maldives was selected as one of the 37 finalists of its category, which started out as a longlist of 200 tourism companies from 69 countries.
"The organizations in the list really prove that responsible tourism is viable and can be successful in all types of tourism, from niche to mainstream,” said Justin Francis, managing director of Responsible Travel and founder of the Awards. "These organizations are the shining stars of responsible tourism.” "Our aim is to surprise and inspire, but the standard is rising, and we have to keep pushing up our expectations of our winners,” said Professor Harold Goodwin, chair of the Awards' judging panel. "Being a finalist for one of these Awards is not easy; the organizations are required to go through a rigorous process, evidencing the impact rather than intent of their work.”
We are thrilled and honored for Shangri-La’s Villingili Resort & Spa, Maldives!