Central to our ethos at Bushmans Kloof Wilderness Reserve and Wellness Retreat is the resolve to protect, preserve, and restore the indigenous species of the local Cedarberg Mountain area, from the vivid fynbos flowers that give the region its UNESCO status to the magnificent Cape Mountain Zebra that roam the reserve. The hotel has won a number of prestigious ecological awards and is a partner of the not-for-profit TreadRight Foundation, contributing to their work in conserving the world’s unique environments. Our emphasis is on creating a luxury that is aligned with, rather than at the expense of, our spectacular natural surroundings. Discover how easy it is to do your bit too with these five simple steps.
Grow Your Own
Reduce your carbon footprint and grow your own seasonal fruit, vegetables, potted herbs, and even flowers. Compost any wastage – peel, stones, stems, leaves – along with egg shells, coffee grounds and tea leaves, and you have yourself a cheap chemical-free fertiliser.
During your stay at Bushmans Kloof, tour the on-site organic gardens, where the fresh ingredients – many of them rare, indigenous varieties – found on the restaurant menus grow in abundance and according to season. Sample local cuisine from our Fynbos menu, each dish flavoured with herbs picked daily from the hotel kitchen garden.
Reduce Carbon Emissions
Go green and substitute driving for cycling and walking, sharing lifts for longer journeys. Plant a tree or two in your (now blossoming) garden – they absorb carbon dioxide and exhale oxygen, so you can look forward to that fresher air you’ll be breathing.
All staff members at Bushmans Kloof live on the property, significantly reducing their need for transport. The hotel is also a proud supporter of the Clanwilliam Cedar Tree Project, which strives to reintroduce the endangered trees that gave the Cedarberg Mountains their name long ago. We grow saplings in our nursery and host a planting ceremony every year.
Sometimes the simplest action can have a positive impact. Keep taps turned off while you brush your teeth, and replace longer showers with relaxing baths.
The team at Bushmans Kloof recycle rain water, and “grey” water from the baths and showers, for use in the gardens. Irrigation is restricted to cooler times of day to minimise evaporation and maximise coverage.
Switch off the lights more often and enjoy the intimate glow of a candlelit dinner. Replace regular light bulbs with energy-efficient alternatives, and get into the habit of switching off appliances when they’re not in use.
Summers at Bushmans Kloof are spent largely outside – the retreat has beautiful al fresco dining areas to reduce the need for artificial lighting. Kitchen stoves are gas, not electric, and lights in public spaces are set on timers. We’ve fitted our staff accommodation with energy-saving light bulbs and are gradually phasing in solar power.
Reduce, reuse and recycle
The manufacture and export of new products consumes energy and water, and landfills produce harmful toxins. Recycling and reusing are easy ways to minimise your impact on the environment. Print documents on both sides of the paper, pass old furniture and belongings on to charity shops, and buy from them yourself when you can. Avoid buying plastics where possible, compost regularly and separate your glass, plastic and paper waste.
Recycling is central to conservation practice at Bushmans Kloof. As well as composting organic waste and reusing rain and bath water in the gardens, the team recycle used cooking oil, build cosy log fires from old newspapers and unwanted plants from the gardens, and only use biodegradable detergents and cleaning products.
Spend your days at Bushmans Kloof Wilderness Reserve and Wellness Retreat immersing yourself in the natural wonders on your doorstep, and your evenings dining on fresh organic delights beneath the Milky Way at Makana or Embers.
Image Credits: Lead image © iStock/subman. Grow your own © iStock/valentinrussanov. Bushmans Kloof exterior © Red Carnation Hotels. Bathroom at Bushmans Kloof © Red Carnation Hotels. Dining by candlelight © Red Carnation Hotels. Compost © iStock/maerzkind.