Hotels across the globe are beginning to recognize the importance of sustainability and self-sufficiency, incorporating the “farm to table” movement by establishing their own farms and gardens. From growing and harvesting their own crops to utilizing other natural agricultural options, hotels are taking proactive steps to both reduce their environmental impact and provide guests with high-quality, locally-sourced goods and services. These properties are not only doing their part to reduce the effects of climate change, but are also proving that sustainability is feasible and beneficial. By following the “farm to table” movement, these hotels are able to reap the rewards of their efforts while simultaneously providing guests with a unique and enriching experience.
Cam Ranh Resort Grows Its Own Food at New Onsite Farm
In an effort to realize more self-sufficiency and sustainability at Alma Resort, landscape manager Ngo Duc Thinh and his team have transformed parts of the 30-hectare resort into a 1000sqm nursery garden, a 260sqm chicken farm and a 180sqm herb garden. The nursery garden is teeming with bananas, coconuts, papaya, squash, passionfruit, sunflowers, daisies and more. The adjacent chicken farm is home to a growing brood of hens, roosters and chicks. Outside beachfront restaurant Atlantis, the herb garden brims with mustard leaves, morning glory, red and green chili peppers, Vietnamese basil, lettuce, green onions, white radish, bok choy, tomatoes and more. All the farm’s produce is directed to the resort’s restaurants. Bananas, coconuts and eggs are served during breakfast. Lettuce and mustard leaves are included in salads and coconuts are provided as drinks at Atlantis. Italian restaurant La Casa’s traditional caprese salad features tomatoes from the herb garden with locally produced mozzarella cheese.
To Plant, to Raise and to Understand on Phuket
Trisara, an exclusive hideaway in Phuket’s unspoiled northwestern corner, is notable among resorts in Thailand for its sustainability philosophy. And this ethos is to the fore in its Michelin-garlanded F&B that encompasses PRU—the only Michelin-starred restaurant on Phuket—and Jampa, a zero-waste venue leading the charge for sustainable dining on the island. Locavore inclinations reach a delicious crescendo at Pru. The venue’s name – an acronym for Plant. Raise. Understand. – provides a solid clue as to its overriding creed. Jampa, meanwhile, takes Trisara’s “Dine Good, Do Good” motto to a logical conclusion with its zero-waste cuisine. The beating heart of this philosophy is Pru Jampa, Trisara’s 16,000-square-metre farm. The treasure trove of a garden is a culinary playground bursting with aromas and flavours to be utilised by award winning chefs Jimmy Ophorst (Pru) and Rick Dingen (Jampa). Here chickens are raised for their eggs, fish is farmed sustainably, and myriad fruits, vegetables, flowers, and herbs are cultivated. All together, along with rotating their crops, this creates a sustainable ecosystem to nourish the land and to support the local economy.
Onsite Farm’s Produce Feeds Resort’s Guests and Staff
The Anam Cam Ranh has dedicated 8500sqm of its 12 beachfront hectares to an array of vegetables, fruits, herbs, and chicken and duck eggs for meals for guests and staff. The resort’s chefs incorporate ingredients from the resort’s farm such as morning glory, malabar spinach, corn, mustard green, and wild betel leaves in meals served to guests at Lang Viet Restaurant & Bar as well as at the staff kitchen. The farm’s variety of vegetables also include lettuce, cucumber, green onion, and cassava root. Custard apple, papaya, banana, mango, cac fruit and bitter melon are among the farm’s fruits. Herbs grown include basil, coriander, thyme, mint, imperata cylindrica, and plantago asiatica. In addition to ducks and chickens, the farm also features geese, rabbits, goats, guinea fowls, turkeys and peacocks. Children are welcome to visit the farm as part of a supervised program to learn more about sustainable farming.
Buffalo Manage the Margins at a Mid-Coast Golf Course
Located in a part of Vietnam renowned for its pristine nature, Laguna Lang Co prides itself on having a strong focus on sustainability. And part of this drive is an extensive organic farm which utilizes worm farming as the source of nutrition. The farm provides fresh produce for the F&B outlets at award winning resorts Banyan Tree Lang Co and Angsana Lang Co. It is supported by a range of other agricultural initiatives: not least Laguna Lang Co’s famous bovine greenkeepers. Water buffaloes help to manage the seven-hectares of rice fields located right in the middle of the Sir Nick Faldo Signature course by eating excess weeds and crops in the area that would otherwise require machinery and manpower to maintain. Not only do the animals provide a vital service in tending to the paddies, they supply an additional appealing optic to one of the most eye-catching sections of a golf course that is already strong on visual manna. The rice-fields, though, are not just for show. Harvested twice a year, they yield up to 20 tons of rice that are used to support the organic farm at Laguna Lang Co and donated to families and seniors in the area.
Willow’s Garden Grows from Strength to Strength
What began as a spice garden in response to a shortage of vegetables during an ongoing COVID-19 lockdown has blossomed into a self-sustainable half-acre space dubbed ‘Willow’s Garden’ on Meliá Ho Tram Beach Resort’s grounds. The team at the beachfront resort on Vietnam’s southern coastline started the project in 2021, planting a few fast-growing vegetables and spices for use in lunches at the staff canteen in a bid to be more self-sufficient during the pandemic. The 1700sqm that surrounds a 300sqm lake harbors an array of fruits, vegetables, herbs and flowers, such as grapefruit, pomegranate, cucumber, eggplant, ginger, coriander, and sunflowers, all free from chemicals and additives. The resort expects to develop a specialized menu embracing a plant-to-plate philosophy in its restaurants, and a program giving guests the chance to cultivate their own mini-garden at home by learning the fruitful tips and tricks deployed by staff. Guests will also be encouraged to rummage through the garden to pick ingredients such as fresh herbs to use when crafting their own dishes before indulging them as part of Muoi restaurant’s “Cook & Dine” cooking class. The resort will also roll out fun, free gardening activities for guests such as painting pots, flower puzzling, leaf crafts, and making herb-infused essential oils.
Meliá Chiang Mai is embracing sustainability and promoting healthy eating with its ‘360° Cuisine’ concept, under which executive chef Suksant Chutinthratip (Billy) crafts dishes that include produce from the hotel’s organic farm and use every part of each ingredient possible before leftovers are returned to the farm as compost. Meliá Chiang Mai has partnered with ORI9IN The Gourmet Farm, a 350-acre gourmet organic farm located in nearby San Sai District, to grow an array of fruits, vegetables and herbs on a two-acre plot on the broader ORI9IN property for its restaurants, bars and spa. “Our ‘farm to plate’ efforts, sourcing organic produce that travels only a short distance to our hotel and using every part of each ingredient we can – roots, leaves, stems, stalks and more – come full circle with ‘plate to farm’, whereby we return food waste back to the farm as fertilizer in a truly 360° concept,” Billy said. Through the partnership with ORI9IN, local farmers assist the hotel with import substitution, growing various kinds of tomatoes, salad leaves, and specialized ingredients such as padrón pepper, that would otherwise need to be imported from Spain for the hotel’s authentic Mediterranean cuisine. The hotel’s kitchen works closely with local farmers to help them improve sustainability and encourage ethical production, in a bid to make communities and the overall food system more resilient.
A Huge Hands-on Resort Farm Kids Love Along Vietnam’s coast
Fusion Resort Cam Ranh, on Vietnam’s south central coast, boasts one of the largest resort farms in Vietnam – with more than 250 animals, a mango orchard, and a herb & vegetable garden of more than 3,000 square meters producing over 40 kg of fresh organic vegetables daily. The resort established the Fusion Farm school in 2020 where they teach classes daily, on a complimentary basis, to guests and employees’ children on how to care for animals and grow vegetables. Children also enjoy collecting their own eggs for breakfast. All of their wet raw food waste is used to feed the animals, resulting in zero removal of waste from the property.
A Bali Resort Farm is Abuzz
Melia Bali, an oceanfront property situated along the pristine coastline of Nusa Dua in Bali, has been abuzz in recent months with the addition of bee hives to its impressive 1,000 sqm organic garden. The beekeeping initiative was introduced to support pollination, biodiversity, and a healthy ecosystem, within the garden, and also on a more broader scale. A range of vegetables, spices, herbs, fruit and a mini paddy field can also be found in the Chef’s Garden of this tropical island.
A Picturesque and Practical Design Helps Feed Locals and Guests in Mai Chau
The mountainside property, Avana Retreat Mai Chau, embraces its local roots – literally. The team recently launched their own natural, pesticide-free garden, where they grow a vast selection of herbs and vegetables that appear on guests’ plates. From chayote to coriander many typical Vietnamese flavors can be found in the new vegetable patch. Also on site is a free-range chicken farm where around 500 chickens enjoy a spacious home, while supplying the kitchen with an abundance of eggs. And while the picturesque terraced rice fields that cascade throughout the property are a stunning design element, they’re also working rice paddies tended to by the local community.
A Vegetable Garden Experience With a Passionate Chef in Bali
While most of the produce at Tanah Gajah, a Resort by Hadiprana, comes from a thriving vegetable garden, elements on each plate aren’t restricted to what can be found in the produce patch. Chef Dean, the head chef at the property who is behind this vast organic garden, likes to make the most of what can also be found throughout the lush grounds of the property, collecting herbs and spices such as the bark from cinnamon trees on-site. Tarragon, garlic chives, oregano, marjoram, lemon balm, cinnamon basil, Vietnamese coriander, turmeric, and vegetables from okra to eggplants, along with fruits ranging from limes to durian, are just some of what is grown at the property and a tour with the chef of his abundant yield is a must-do for passionate foodies.