Eco Rating Cascada Farallas Waterfall Villas

Name of property Cascadas Farallas – Waterfall Villas
Person completing this form Fateh Kaur Bolivar
Position Owner /President
Address of property 3 kilometers South of Reptilandia Park, left off the main road from San Isidro to Dominical. Baru – Dominical, Rainforest (*no street numbers in this part of CR)
Country Costa Rica
Phone number including country code and area code + (506) 8882 7717
Web site Cascada Farallas Waterfall Villas
E-mail fateh@watefallvillas.com
Type of property Eco-resort / Eco-retreat
Number of rooms or cottages 6 Suites in 3 2 bedroom villas
Maximum number of guests 15
Eco memberships ASANA conservation group
Eco ratings, certifications, awards Eco Tropical Resorts Eco Rating: 3.8 out of 5. NEW property
  • Do you have a written environmental or social sustainability policy?     YES/NO

If yes, please attach.

  • Do you have a written environmental management system?              YES/NO

If yes, please attach.

  • Describe the property – aim, size, facilities, amount of land owned and leased  (150 words max)

The aim of the Cascadas Farallas Waterfall Villas property is to support the ASANA corridor of the Tapir to facilitate the migration of endangered species. The tapir has not been seen since the 1950’s until the most recent sighting less than 1 year ago because of conservationist efforts in our area.
The Cascadas Farallas property is 14 acres with 5 waterfalls. 75% is reserved as a rainforest habitat for wildlife in our private reserve which serves to connect other similar properties to the rainforest corridors that area used by migrating animals from the Osa Peninsula to the Severge river.
In the south pacific’s exotic tropical, rare Baru Rainforest and waterfall environment are 3 luxury Balinese style villas / 6 suites for guests to immerse themselves in the tropical rainforest. Perched high in the canopy the Waterfall Villas give a unique experience of nature at the top of the waterfalls!
We promote a healthy lifestyle and educate guests to become Carbon Neutral giving them an opportunity to plant rare indigenous rainforest trees. Our mantra is the Healing Journey, and we offer daily Yoga, meditation, nutritious vegetarian, vegan, and living food personalized cuisine programs, detox packages, and a number of natural Spa treatments for wellbeing next to our private waterfalls.

  • Describe the location, including distance to nearest town and size of town (100 words max) The exotic tropical South Pacific of Costa Rica is where you will find the Waterfall Villas. Cascadas Farallas Waterfall Villas is located in the Baru Rainforest, yet only 5 minutes from the surfer famous beaches and small village of Dominical, Hermosa, Ventanas, a little farther south is Uvita and Ojochal. We are 3 minutes from the Giant Nauyaca Waterfall Tour for a horseback ride in the rainforest. Only 15 minutes from the Whale’s Tail National Marine Park, and it is 10 minutes to the Canopy Zipline at the National Baru Rainforest Reserve. Cano Island for the most pristine experience of diving and snorkelling is only 1.5 hours by boat directly off shore. Here dolphins, and turtles are regularly sighted, and during August you can see over 200 humpback whales giving birth and mating.
  • Describe WHY you made the decision to develop an eco resort (100 word max)

It was always a dream of mine having grown up practically in the Peruvian Amazon highlands, when I found my husband from Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica I found a person with that same dream : to do what ever we could to preserve the rainforest environment from slash and burn farming for cattle pasture, and the relentless development of man.

Introduction to the Butterfly Club’s Eco Rating

The Butterfly Club Eco Rating has five equally-weighted categories:

  • Energy;
  • Water;
  • Recycling and waste;
  • Land and nature conservation; and
  • Community.

Each category has five levels, designated by one to five butterflies.  Through self assessment, resort operators completing this rating will determine their own levels within each category based on their responses to items listed below.

Two categories – energy and water – have similar rating systems with Levels 1 and 2 addressing conservation of existing resources, and Levels 3, 4 and 5 addressing creation of renewable energy or capturing water.

Level five in every category also requires written sustainability policies or environmental management systems to: (1) monitor and record consumption; (2) test and apply additional conservation methods; and (3) work towards specific targets.   We require a copy of your policies if you achieve level 5 in any category.

Eco Rating Cascada Farallas Waterfall Villas Energy

Levels 1 and 2 – conservation: Check all that apply:

X  use natural air circulation and fans, not air conditioners *some rooms have air conditioners, however they are special economical models, use is not encouraged.
X  use natural light during the day
X  minimize use of fossil-fuel powered vehicles, machines and equipment
X  use “on demand” or solar heating for hot water
X air dry clothes/linens
X  wash dishes by hand
X  use energy efficient appliances and electronics
X use low wattage fluorescent light bulbs
X  change linens, tablecloths, napkins upon request
X  switch off lights when not used
Other energy conservation activities? Please list:

Level 1 = four or fewer energy conservation activities

Level 2 = five or more energy conservation activities

Levels 3, 4 and 5 – renewable energy: Indicate proportion (%) of energy from each source:

_1%__  solar
__0_  wind
__0_  hydro
_24%_  generator
_70%__  public utility
Other energy sources? Please list:

100% TOTAL
How were these proportions developed?

Level 3 = renewable energy is employed and is less than 1/3 of all energy

Level 4 = renewable energy constitutes 1/3 – 2/3 of all energy

Level 5 = renewable energy constitutes 2/3 or more of all energy.  In addition, there are written sustainability policies or environmental management systems to: (1) monitor and record energy consumption; (2) test and apply additional energy conservation methods; and (3) work towards specific energy targets.

Attach a copy of your policies if you achieve Energy Level 5 (required).

Your Energy Level (select 1 – 5) =   3

Eco Rating Cascada Farallas Waterfall Villas Water

Levels 1 and 2 – conservation: Check all that apply:

X  low flow faucets and showerheads
X  low water use toilets *special eco toilets  in all villas
X change linens, towels, tablecloths, and napkins upon request
X use table mats that can be wiped and not laundered
X  use biodegradable laundry detergent, dish soap and hand soap
X  treat swimming pool with chlorine-free processes
Other water conservation activities?  Please list.
Waterfalls have a very delicate environment and our water management system does not allow any pollutants to re-enter the water table.

Level 1 = three or fewer water conservation activities

Level 2 = four or more water conservation activities

Levels 3, 4 and 5 – capture and treat fresh water and manage waste water. Capture water: Indicate proportion (%) of water from each source:

_100%_  spring
__0_  river
__0_  rain
0  reuse gray
__0_  public utility
Other water sources? Please list.

100% TOTAL

Fresh water treatment: how is captured fresh water treated?
_X__  naturally.  Indicate method: charcoal, ultraviolet light, other? List:
___  chemically.  List chemicals used:

Waste water management:
___  septic tanks
___  cesspools
__X_  other? List methods: Eco-tank system that is pumped out completely when full and uses bacteria. Sludge is processed to make compost for farms in other areas of Coast Rica.

Level 3: Water is captured (from springs, rivers, rain or prior use) and constitutes less than 1/3 of water from all sources.  Water is treated chemically.  Water disposal does not minimize damage to coral reefs and rain forests

Level 4:  Captured water constitutes 1/3 to 2/3 of all water.  Water is treated naturally. Water disposal minimizes damage to coral reefs and rain forests

Level 5:  Captured water constitutes more than 2/3 of all water.  Water is treated naturally. Water disposal minimizes damage to coral reefs and rain forests.   In addition, there are written sustainability policies or environmental management systems to: (1) monitor and record water consumption; (2) test and apply additional water conservation methods; and (3) work towards specific water targets.

Attach a copy of your policies if you achieve Water Level 5 (required).

Your Water Level (select 1 – 5):  4
*Goal to monitor water use and go to level 5.

Eco Rating Cascada Farallas Waterfall Villas Recycling and waste

Check all that apply:

X   use durable service items, e.g. cups, glasses, dishes, tableware, storage items
X   buy fresh and local to reduce packaging and emissions from transportation
X   purchase in bulk to reduce packaging
X   recycle paper, glass, plastic, aluminium
X   minimize emissions from fossil-fuel powered vehicles, machines & equipment
X   zero waste in the kitchen
___   serve local water, not bottled water
___   cleaning products are biodegradable
X   compost organic matter
Other methods to recycle waste? Please list.

Level 1 = four or fewer recycling activities

Level 2 = five recycling activities

Level 3 = six recycling activities

Level 4 = seven recycling activities

Level 5 = eight or more recycling activities.  In addition, there are written sustainability policies or environmental management systems to: (1) monitor and record recycling and waste; (2) test and apply additional recycling and waste conservation methods; and (3) work towards specific recycling and waste targets.

Attach a copy of your policies if you achieve Recycling and Waste Level 5 (required).

Your Recycling and Waste Level (select 1 – 5):  4 

Eco Rating Cascada Farallas Waterfall Villas Land and nature conservation

Check all that apply:

_X__   minimize tree removal when building
__X_   use only botanical (plant-based) herbicides & pesticides in garden & grounds
_X__   maintain organic gardens as food source for resort
___   use biodegradable cleaning products
__X_   minimize external illumination
__X_   take additional specific actions to preserve the local habitat.  Please list actions and projects:
Level 1: one or two land and nature conservation activities

Level 2: three land and nature conservation activities

Level 3: four land and nature conservation activities

Level 4: five land and nature conservation activities

Level 5: six or more land and nature conservation activities.  In addition, there are written sustainability policies or environmental management systems to: (1) monitor and record land and nature conservation activities; (2) test and apply additional land and nature conservation methods; and (3) work towards specific land and nature conservation targets.

Attach a copy of your policies if you achieve Land and Nature Conservation Level 5 (required).

Your Land and Nature Conservation Level (select 1 – 5): 4

Eco Rating Cascada Farallas Waterfall Villas Community

This category addresses policies and activities regarding staff, guests, suppliers and other members of the community.

Check all activities that apply:

__X_  hire staff residing near the resort          _90__% local nationals
_X__  use local suppliers                                _90__% purchased goods produced locally
__X_  re-invest resort income locally            _80__% income re-invested locally
_X__  pay above local prevailing wage
_X__  pay into local social security
__X_  provide health insurance or coverage
__X_  use regular staff meetings to educate staff about sustainable processes throughout the resort, in the garden, with waste disposal, etc
_X__  provide educational awareness programs for staff, guests, suppliers and other members of the local community
__X_  provide sustainable transport to work for staff
__X_  take additional specific actions to support the local community. Please list actions and projects.
Donations to Dragonfly Special School for Autistic Children in the Chripo Mountains beyond San Isidro.

Level 1: one or two community activities

Level 2: three to five community activities

Level 3: six to seven community activities

Level 4: eight to nine community activities

Level 5: ten or more community activities.  In addition, there are written sustainability policies or environmental management systems to: (1) monitor and record community activities; (2) test and apply additional methods to support the community; and (3) work towards specific community targets.

Attach a copy of your policies if you achieve Community Level 5 (required). 4

Your Community Level (select 1 – 5): 4

YOUR OVERALL ECO SCORE (add your level for each category and divide by 5 and enter the result with the decimal point, e.g. 3.6):  3.8

We have three final questions which are not part of the eco rating: 

  • Please describe your single most important eco achievement: The use of recycled sustainable materials in building, and the use of natural air flow Wantilan roofs from Bali tropical architecture created completely sustainable and environmentally friendly villas without giving up a look and feel of total tropical luxury. No wood was wasted, minimal removal of trees for building and of all woods for inside villas was taken from naturally fallen trees on the property. For every single tree that was cut to build the villas +50 have now been planted! Our reforestation program plants over 100 trees/yr.
  • Indicate additional sustainable practices that you plan to institute within the next 6 months.
  • Our plans to build a small swimming pool will use a salt water technology with no harmful chemicals.
  • Yoga center building done in Bamboo / equally sustainable materials from property.
  • Expanded education for guests and staff
  • Expand reforestation program to 250 indigenous trees/yr
  • More involvement with conservation groups in the area
  • Is there anything else you would like to add to this eco rating?

It would be an honour to get the butterfly rating – we are a favourite home to the giant Morpho Butterfly. There butterflies dance every morning in our waterfalls!
In saving this particular Baru Rainforest property we have provided a home to many rare mammal, bird and insects. Some species found on he property include, Jaguarundi, Puma, Ocelots, Kinkajous, Sloth, White faced Monkey, Pesoti, Wild pig, Agoutis, White tail deer, over 300 species of bird including Trogon, Mot Mots, Tiger Herons, Muscovite ducks, Guans, Parrots,…etc.