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The best eco-friendly London hotels.

by Rajul on September 16, 2010

The award-winning Cavendish is one of several London hotels which have real substance behind their eco-friendly credentials

London Hotels Insight has already featured a good selection of the most eco-friendly London hotels and it’s now time to do a recap of the very best.

We’ve only listed hotels that have won rigorous external awards for their environmentally-friendly approach (such as from the Visit Britain Green Tourism Business Scheme) or have supplied us with documentation.

Our shortlisted hotels are not only top-notch in terms of green credentials but also because they generally rank within the top 100 on TripAdvisor.

Here is our selection, with each classified by the hotel’s specific “flavour”:

Eco-budget: Base2stay Kensington

Base2stay’s green credentials are firmly established.  The hotel’s founder (Robert Nadler) has invested significantly in developing Base2stay’s environmental credentials and enthused his staff around this mission.

Base2stay has a number of green initiatives which we’ve listed before.  They also go the extra mile with a responsible guest charter and have recently introduced a zero emissions vehicle.  The hotel offers free WiFi too.

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A "Responsible Guest Charter" is applied at Base2stay Kensington to reinforce the hotel's many green initiatives

Eco-boutique: The Zetter

The Zetter’s management went to the trouble of constructing a well under the building to source the water required to meet the hotel’s needs.  There are a slew of other pioneering eco-friendly measures in place.

It’s a pretty good hotel too, currently in the top 100 on Tripadvisor.  The Zetter has a slightly funky feel to it without being over-the-top.  It also has free hotel WiFi in a location handy for exploring the delights of Clerkenwell.

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The Zetter is a great "eco-friendly" choice not far from lively Islington

Eco-pioneering: The Cavendish

This is arguably London’s leading eco-conscious hotel which London Hotels Insight visited last year to conduct due diligence and meet management.

Winner of the prestigious Green Tourism for London Gold Award and other accolades, the Cavendish has an environmentally-friendly culture that seeps through its every pore.  It’s also a stylish central London hotel.

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The Cavendish Hotel serves a breakfast with impeccably-sourced ingredients

Eco-luxe: The Rafayel

The Rafayel has shaken up the London hotel scene since its entry at the start of the year.  You may recall that we wrote about how the hotel’s management boldly reckoned that they could hit the “luxury” and “eco-friendly” buttons at the same time: a brave claim by a new hotel.

Yet it has established a position in the top 100 on TripAdvisor and seems to be hitting the mark.  Guests particularly like the river views, spacious bathrooms and the fact that it’s a free WiFi hotel.

Time will tell whether its ambitious environmental ambitions will be met (at opening they even spoke of rewarding their most eco-friendly guests).  But it certainly deserves full marks both for effort and innovation.

Check the best rate for the Rafayel Hotel from 30+ hotel booking sites

The Rafayel Hotel - currently rated in the top 50 London hotels on TripAdvisor - has already shown that hotels can be eco-friendly and fun to stay in too

Being a new-build hotel, the Rafayel has been able to incorporate cutting-edge technology to back up its eco credentials which established hotels would find hard to match

Eco-innovative: The Lancaster London

The Lancaster London near Hyde Park has taken a slightly different but no less effective tack in its efforts to be environmentally-friendly.

It certainly caught the eye with its creditable “bees on the roof” initiative last year and consolidated this by winning a Silver Award (upgraded from Bronze) from the official Green Tourism for London scheme.

As with a number of the hotels on our list, eco-initiatives have been led by top management.  A special environmental task force has been set up too.

This hotel is again solidly in the top 100 on TripAdvisor: be warned though that they currently (inexplicably) charge for WiFi at a hefty £17 per day.

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The Lancaster London even has a "Bee Team" to source sustainable honey from a colony of bees on the hotel's roof - sure to be delicious with your breakfast too

Eco-ultra-deluxe: The Savoy

We examined the Savoy’s eco-credentials in a dedicated feature recently – surprising in a way, because the words “ultra-deluxe hotel” and “eco-friendly” are rarely uttered in the same sentence.

The jury is still out on whether this Fairmont-managed gem will deliver on its promise but we do admire that it holds such worthy aspirations.

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While guests enjoy the view from the Savoy's River Suites, the hotel's staff will be busy safeguarding the same view by helping clean up the shoreline of the River Thames

All the above London hotels deserve your custom for leading the way in their environmental strategies, in what is often quite a wasteful industry.

Reward them with your custom if they happen to suit you: quite likely as they all happen to be very decent places to stay as well as being “green”.

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Photo credits: The Savoy (Fairmont Hotels & Resorts), Base2stay Kensington, Cavendish Hotel, Lancaster London, Rafayel Hotel, Zetter Hotel.

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