As an Eco Lodge and Nature Reserve situated in a pristine wilderness area, Duma Manzi Eco-Lodge & Spa is committed to helping in the preservation of nature through environmental and social responsibility practises through all areas of operation. The lodge practises and policies with regard to the following include:
- The lodge operates without electricity therefore utilizing a generator running for 6 hours a day.
- This is supplemented by the use of solar power (with backup generators and batteries)
- Gas is used for hot water, heating and cooking
- Ceiling fans are used for cooling as opposed to using air conditioning.
- Utilising natural light in guest and public areas where possible, as well as ensuring energy efficient lighting in all guest locations, employee work and storage areas. (Only energy efficient light bulbs are used).
- Every effort is made to conserve water – our showers are fitted with water reducers, reducing water flow from 15 litres per minute to 9 litres per minute.
- Our toilets are filled with an innovative water saving mechanism of water bottles in the cistern which has reduced the water usage by a third when flushing toilets.
- Our pools are part of a pilot project by Eskom and use an ozone aerator – a first in South Africa to be tested at Duma Manzi Eco-Lodge & Spa.
- We are responsible for pumping water out of the river and purifying it in our on-site purification system, as well as installation of waste treatment facility.
- 100% of all cleaning supplies are non-toxic and biodegradable.
- We make use of water conscious laundry programmes, whereby guests have their linens changed every 3 days as opposed to daily.
- Organic gardening practises in the reserve grounds (non- use of non-organic pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizers).
- Grey water is pumped into holding tanks and re-purified for use in irrigation of the reserve plants
- Organic kitchen waste is composted on site and used in the Worm Farm and on the surrounding lodge grounds and gardens.
- Recycling and separation of all glass bottles, cans, paper and materials where ever possible
- We have replaced individual soaps and lotions with bulk dispensers for Instinctive by Nature guest amenities, a range of natural products, to reduce wastage
- Encouraging guests to use towels over more than once a day, thus cutting down on detergent, water and electricity use.
- Encouraging low impact and “leave no trace” enjoyment of the lodge property, wilderness area and river among guests.
- Please note that guest recycling bins are not available in the rooms, however, maintenance staff collects refuse from the bins daily and the contents are separated in to their respective recycling bins.
- Although there isn’t a written disposal “constitution” all staff are very aware of the importance of recycling and make every effort to recycle wherever possible
- Emphasis of all activities is on allowing guests to explore the beauty of nature, such as educational bush walks and game drives on open Land Rovers, with the focus being on different aspects of educational awareness.
- We strive to conserve the biological and cultural diversity through protecting our diverse ecosystems on the reserve.
- Increasing the environmental and cultural knowledge of the local community, staff members and guests forms a very important part in our conservation of nature.
- Lead- free paint is used on all the interior and exterior painted surfaces and is supplied by Genkem, Nova and Bourne Eco Friendly Ranges.
- There are information brochures in every room, promoting and detailing the area to raise awareness of what our surroundings have to offer
- At least 90% of our staff is hired from the local community, which allow for unsurpassable insight about the local culture.
- All produce is bought from local suppliers as we source vegetables from our local neighbours
- We only use 100% Hormone Free, 100% additive free, 100% antibiotic free Meats in our dining experiences. Guaranteed A grade and of the best quality, all meat is matured in the cold room for a week before processing, to ensure the best flavour and tenderness
- Our Eco-Lodge only uses organic or natural ingredients
Green Building Methods and Products Used
- Each building has been positioned where old buildings or camp sites had been erected by the previous farmers and labourers on the cattle farm. This has meant that no new areas for building were established, saving and preserving this beautiful African wilderness area.
- The buildings have been constructed in such a manner that impacts minimally on the environment.
- Natural materials used include: glass, sandstone, stone/rocks, recycled bricks, grass for thatching, alien trees for purpose designed bar, benches and tables. All of these have been selected over plastics and synthetics in the construction of all our buildings.
- Building materials including adhesives, coatings and sealants are all environmentally friendly products. Wood glues- Genkem Carpenters Cold Glue (contains no solvents or formaldehydes) Sealants- Genkem Just like a Silicone: water based flexible wood sealant containing no solvents. Wall Coatings- Genkem Premiuim Plus Range of environmentally friendly decorative paints was used, due to their water based nature and low V.O.C products. Walls- Genkem Wall Care (exterior walls) Walls- Genkem Satin Glow (interior walls)
Wooden Structures and Decking:
- Genkem Nova Range, a premium range of wooden coatings, which are lead free timber preservatives include: Nova 14, Nova 15 and Nova 16 for exterior wood coatings and Nova 17 and Nova 18 for interior wooden coatings.
- Genkem Bourne Free was used on all interior wooden floors; this is a revolutionary environmentally friendly wooden floor coating, at the leading edge of technology.