Victoria Fall Safari Lodge, Zimbabwe

Distinction Winner - New Member

Developer of the award-winning Victoria Falls Safari Lodge, Mr Dave Glynn, said: "We are absolutely delighted with the award. The Victoria Falls Safari Lodge has led with many simple but benchmark conservation concepts from its inception. It is wonderful to have them recognised by Green Globe. Hopefully this will raise awareness that it is not difficult to care for your surroundings."

Ross Kennedy, director of the resort's management company and responsible for the entry, added: "What has been particularly rewarding is the 'buy in' and commitment of our staff to all aspects of our environmental awareness and conservation programme. To hear a member of staff in conversation with a guest about the activity around the waterhole, be it game, trees or birdlife, - speaking with confidence and knowledge, is a very satisfying feeling, and enhances the guest experience, too. Whilst we have entered and won an award, I think you will find that many operators in the Zimbabwean tourism industry practice similar philosophies."

Victoria Falls Safari Lodge is a privately owned lodge set in 160 acres of natural bush veld with a natural game waterhole on site. The Lodge has 61 standard rooms, including one for disabled access, five deluxe rooms and six split level suites.

The Lodge has been built with no expense or effort spared to ensure that the site remains as undisturbed as possible, using thatch, local hard woods and commercially grown Eucalyptus poles. Its intricate split levels and indigenous trees, some even growing through the roof structure, give the impression of a vast, open-plan tree house.

Prior to commencement of any work on the Lodge, an environmental impact assessment was carried out which included identifying mature trees, natural features and rock formations. An ongoing policy is that no tree may be cut down without the express permission of the Chief Executive.

In an excellent example of sustainable development partnerships, the Lodge has a sister project over the border in Zambia known as Songwe Point Village. Working with people and Chief of the local Mukuni village, a traditional village was created as authentically as practicably possible. This operates as a tourist experience incorporating accommodation, culture, archaeology, history, music and traditions of the Mukuni people. Funds received also benefit the Mukuni community at large via health, education and social services.

All the stakeholders in the Lodge, including employees, suppliers and the local community, are committed to following ethical business practice in respect to the environment including projects that benefit the local community, through education of employees, guests and local residents, and working with local and central government to protect the environment.

q Waste Minimisation, reuse and recycling

+ Energy efficiency, conservation and management

Ø Management of fresh water resources

Û Waste Water Management

H Land use planning and management

" Involving staff, customers and communities in environmental issues

Y ' Partnerships for sustainable development

Funds received are intended to benefit the Mukini Community at large via health, education, social services and local infrastructure

O Noise Control

Ross Kennedy

Victoria Falls Safari Lodge