Tuesday 26 October 2010

Interview: Martin Orbea from Corona Save the Beach Campaign

So Martin, what’s the Corona Extra Save The Beach campaign?
The campaign has been launched with the mission of preserving Europe’s endangered beaches. Its aim is to recover at least one European beach each year. The campaign was launched in 2008 and we work in partnership with the Foundation for Environmental Education and its world-recognised Blue Flag programme.

How are you raising public awareness?
Through a number of pioneering initiatives. It ranges from calling for volunteers to join us in beach clean-ups, to projects such as our Beach Hotel built from rubbish, which was created by famed German artist HA Shult.

A hotel made from rubbish? Tell us a little more about that...
The hotel was built using litter collected on beaches from across Europe to raise awareness of the need for conservation. It acted as a representation of how we can expect our shorelines to look unless actions are taken now to protect them. Supermodel Helena Christensen was the first guest, spending a night at the hotel sleeping on a bed made from rubbish.

What beach is the campaign saving this year and how was it chosen?
This year’s beach is Bahia De Portman in Murcia, Spain. Our volunteers will shortly be involved in the big clean-up. The beach was chosen in an internet poll we set up on our website:


Sustainable Restaurant Review: Otarian

Review of Otarian: Shaftesbury Avenue and Wardour Street, London

Otarian has recently opened at two locations in central London. I checked out both, the scores below apply to both venues.

Eco Credentials: 5 out of 5
Otarian is a completely vegetarian restaurant chain. The business is founded on ecological principles which are integral to the identity of the company.

Food Quality: 4 out of 5
Healthy and good quality, presented more as cafe style fast food than luxury cuisine.

Views and Decor: 4 out of 5
More of a cafe atmosphere than comfortable restaurant to relax after your meal. A big screen displays a world map and environmental facts and figures.

Affordability: 5 out of 5
Congratulations to Otarian for making sustainable food affordable and therefore accessible to the mass population.

Overall Affordable Eco Stars: 18 out of 20


Sustainable Hotel Review: The Scarlet Hotel

by Lucy Cornes

The Scarlet Hotel near Newquay opened in 2009, with the promise of combining luxury with sustainability. A decadent break, without the guilt trip. The 37-room hotel is heated by a biomass boiler, reliant on woodchips sourced from Devon and Cornwall. Deluxe red hot tubs, which perch on the edge of the cliff overlooking the beach, are also wood-fired. Solar panels are used to power the indoor swimming pool.

The beautifully practical sea thrift roof both insulates the building and provides a natural habitat for insects and butterflies. ‘Grey’ water is collected from shower waste, treated and then used to flush toilets.

Combining luxury and sustainability right down to the details cannot have been an easy task, yet The Scarlet seems to have redefined both terms, setting the standard for a new generation of hotels where neither need be compromised.