A Green Way of Life: Luang Prabang View


Some may struggle with the costs of sustainable practices, but former Luang Prabang View Hotel General Manager John Williams sees going green as a way of life…while saving greenbacks along the way.

Sustainable Tourism Laos

Mr Williams grew up in a rural town, where sustainability was the norm. “I have been working to save and use nature for many years. As a boy, I learned to use and re-use. I have been applying this know-ledge in my decades of hospitality experience,” he said. “It’s more than accounting wins or a thing you can purchase; it’s about doing what we feel is right. It’s a way of life…common sense …part of our daily work load.” 

Sustainable Tourism Laos

Mr Williams downplays the role of certification. “Just do it and save money.” He should know; the Luang Prabang View has landed several plaudits, including the ASEAN MICE Award. “We can easily check off the items on forms, while initiating sustainable measures that any property can implement, plus raise the bottom line.”

Water from the luxury hilltop property’s “grey pond” septic system, in which overflow is channelled through three naturally cleansing ponds, hoses down gardens and lawns. “If we used the city’s water, it would cost about $1,475 per month. That easily covers a $480 pump.”

Sustainable Tourism Laos

The Luang Prabang View has been in front of the “No Plastic Parade” for years. For example, the hotel switched from plastic to reusable glass bottles, and rea-lised its RoI in less than a year. “The hotel moved to paper bags and recycled containers for take-away food, and uses paper straws. Green netting replaces big black plastic bags for a 60% savings, and we sell recyclables.”

The hotel’s nine compost heaps for rejuvenating earth, vs. buying dirt, saves $450 per year on a ton of soil. Replacing chemicals with Effective Micro-organisms (EMOs), made from hotel waste, cuts $8,220 in bio-cleaning purchases. 

Sustainable Tourism Laos

Local farmers cash in by growing herbs and vegetables at the hotel’s garden, and many land on your plate. The garden also reaps fruit and flowers, and only uses regenerative and sustainable plants. These farmers raise animals, including chickens, ducks,  and pigs. Some are sold, while the kitchen uses others.

“We also purchase local products. This keeps tourist dollars in the community,” Mr Williams said. Items range from ingredients and fresh produce to amenities like natural soaps, shampoo, and cotton shopping bags.

Sustainable Tourism Laos

Mr Williams is constantly on the prowl to uncover new sustainable methods. It’s in his DNA. Farmers mix coffee grounds with wet waste to feed the animals, and even use EMOs to repel insects.

“It’s just common sense,” he explained. “It’s a way of life.”

Staying Safe

“Wipe it down with alcohol” rings throughout Luang Prabang View’s post-pandemic policies and procedures…but the hotel is doing much more: masks, gloves, boiling kitchen and dining ware…

“We needed to re-invent how we work, and urge our guests and partners to follow us to ensure safety for all,” Mr Williams said.

“The changes require a big step,” he noted. “The hotel involves all departments to guarantee safety is of the highest levels…We also expect guests to be in good health before arriving in Laos.”




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