Tatler Philippines


Sustainabi­lity is usually synonymous with environmen­tal impact, but it’s far broader than that. How are hotels working to sustain local communitie­s?

- By Coco Marett

From a haven in the cradle of Incan civilisati­on to a lodge on land owned and protected by First Nations people in Canada, Tatler explores properties that are making a meaningful impact on local communitie­s, ensuring bright futures rooted in rich pasts.


If you love and respect something, you’ll protect it. That’s the attitude that Canada’s Klahoose First Nation hopes to stimulate by inviting visitors to its small slice of paradise at Klahoose Wilderness Resort, which the Nation bought in 2020 and reopened in 2021. Today, it stands as a symbol of social, environmen­tal and economic reconcilia­tion, providing employment and healing to indigenous people.

Accessible only by boat or an hour’s seaplane ride north of Vancouver, the seven-room resort sits between the Salish Sea and a coastal forest of soaring cedar and fir trees. Here, you can experience life—and the natural world—through the lens of Canada’s indigenous people; every stay includes a guided boat tour where guests will see orcas, humpback whales, dolphins and sea lions. On-land experience­s include grizzly bear viewing, guided nature tours and storytelli­ng by First Nation elders.

Unlike the other properties in this article, Klahoose Resort isn’t linked to an organisati­on. But as a First Nationowne­d resort, Klahoose resort offers employment opportunit­ies that are aligned with the traditions and values of the Klahoose First Nation people—from song and storytelli­ng to crafts and conservati­on work—preserving it for generation­s to come.


Hotel Titilaka is something of a legend: known as the most exclusive hotel in the region, the Relais & Châteaux property sits on a surreal location in the Andes, right on the shores of Lake Titicaca, the birthplace of Incan civilisati­on. At an altitude of 3,800 metres, the lake and its environs straddle Peru and Bolivia and are home to some of the oldest communitie­s in South America—perhaps even the world.

Aware of this unique privilege, Titilaka makes a point of being a good neighbour to these peoples, namely the Quechua, Uru and Aymara. Ninety per cent of the hotel staff are employed locally, and the majority of dishes served use ingredient­s bought from local markets and grown around

Lake Titicaca’s unique microclima­te: think colourful varieties of native potatoes, corn, quinoa—its quinoa pancakes are a breakfast favourite—and trout fished from the lake.

Titilaka also has a partnershi­p with the non-profit organisati­on Kusimayo—“happy river” in Quechua—which works to improve the living conditions of families affected by poverty and malnutriti­on in the southern highlands of Peru. As well as improving education and healthcare, Kusimayo works with local communitie­s to reinforce values—regarding women, natural resources and indigenous self-worth— while helping them to grow and progress.

To support the organisati­on, Titilaka pledges a per guest donation.


A visit to Siem Reap isn’t just a holiday but a humbling lesson in history and resilience. Despite its painful and complicate­d past, today it is a proud and vibrant city that holds fast to Cambodian traditions. Open for over 20 years, Amansara has played a pivotal role in introducin­g visitors to these traditions—it even has an in-house archaeolog­ist for guests looking to deepen their understand­ing of Cambodian history, particular­ly around Angkor Wat, which is just five kilometres away.

Back on hotel grounds, Amansara has committed a large garden to the agroecolog­ical work of Camborea, a local NGO that helps the country’s most underprivi­leged citizens. Villagers are employed through the partnershi­p and awareness is raised around the need to improve seed and soil health, and the importance of food self-sufficienc­y and permacultu­re.

Disability discrimina­tion is rife in Cambodia; according to a statement from the hotel, “In a country with a prevailing reincarnat­ion belief system, a misconcept­ion can be that being born with significan­t impairment­s represents sins committed in a previous life.” Amansara works to counter this, offering equal opportunit­ies to members of the community with disabiliti­es who might otherwise struggle to find employment.


Sumba is the ace up Indonesia’s sleeve. This largely undevelope­d

island—where wild horses dart across white sand beaches and remote tribes continue to live as their ancestors did—is just a cheeky 30-minute flight from Bali.

Nihi Sumba’s original founders establishe­d the Sumba Foundation to preserve the island’s unique culture, while supporting village-based projects that impact health, education, clean water and income generation. Guests are encouraged to tour the foundation’s facilities or go a step further and get involved in community projects during their stay, to get a first-hand glimpse of life on the island and why Nihi Sumba works so hard to protect it.

Through donations from the hotel and its guests, the foundation has spent millions of dollars on locally sourced products used to build and supply the resort, helped more than 45,000 Sumbese gain access to clean water, and helped to reduce malaria infections by up to 93 per cent, not to mention creating thousands of jobs on the island.

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 ?? ?? Clockwise from left: Klahoose Wilderness Resort is owned and operated by Canada’s Klahoose First Nation; Titilaka, a Relais & Châteaux property, sits on Lake Titicaca in Peru; Wild horses on the beach at Nihi Sumba; A place for contemplat­ion at Amansara
Clockwise from left: Klahoose Wilderness Resort is owned and operated by Canada’s Klahoose First Nation; Titilaka, a Relais & Châteaux property, sits on Lake Titicaca in Peru; Wild horses on the beach at Nihi Sumba; A place for contemplat­ion at Amansara
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