Bridgette Meinhold

Jean-Michel Cousteau Eco Resort Showcases Traditional Building

by , 11/16/10

Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort, fiji, eco tourism, eco resort, sustainable architecture,Photo by Bridgette Meinhold for Inhabitat

The larger buildings, which contain the dining rooms, kitchen, reception and office are open-air buildings with large thatched roofs. Wood used for the guest bures was sustainably harvested from fast growing local Fiji pines rather than tropical hardwoods. Local craftsman constructed the bures and they continue to repair the thatched roofs after storms, which helps preserve traditional construction methods.

None of the bures have air conditioning or TVs — ceiling fans and energy-efficient lights are the only electronic appliances used inside. The resort is in the process of replacing its old gas-fired water heaters with solar water heaters, and all of its waste water is processed on-site through a multi-step digestion and filtration process, which culminates in the water being moved into a number of lily ponds stocked with tilapia. The filtered water from the ponds is then used to irrigate the resorts grounds, which was previously a coconut plantation. An on-site tree nursery grows native trees to restore the landscape to its natural state.

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