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explora Spearheads Environmental Sustainability in South America, with LEED Application for new Easter Island Lodge

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Green building certification will be a first for region’s hospitality industry, with sustainable design

to benefit guests and environment

August, 2007 (Santiago, Chile) – As of December 2007, explora en Rapa Nui will offer guests the finest accommodations on Easter Island, as well as the greenest hotel experience in Chile and South America.  The Santiago, Chile-based travel operator, whose remarkable journeys to remote regions reveal the mysteries of South America, is currently in the midst of the LEED certification process with the U.S. Green Building Council for its newest luxury lodge, Posada de Mike Rapu, on the southern edge of Easter Island.

By following LEED recommendations throughout the ongoing construction process, explora is assured certification while protecting the sanctity of the hotel’s delicate surroundings.  Certification for Posada de Mike Rapu will be a first for the hospitality industry throughout South America. “The LEED application is consistent with the explora philosophy, which has always embraced high-end comfort and environmental stewardship.  It’s only logical that we would take this approach to the next level,” says Josef Stirnimann, Executive Vice President and General Manager of explora.

Among the many environmentally focused attributes of explora’s new Easter Island lodge:

  • Passive design of the energy, lighting and “skin” of the building, with ample windows to allow in daylight and enhance cross-ventilation of rooms and public spaces
  • A sound structural mass with thermal retention for energy storage
  • High-efficiency lighting, heating, ventilation, air-conditioning, transformers and appliances
  • “Free” cooling and economizer cycles in public spaces for energy savings
  • Low flow water fixtures and reclaimed water from air conditioners
  • Use of renewable, recyclable and fast-growing building materials
  • Landscaping with native and adapted species requiring low or no watering
  • A low-waste process that protects the environment during construction and throughout the life of the hotel
  • explora encourages guests to join daily guided hikes, bicycle excursions, swims and snorkeling

The Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Green Building Rating System is a benchmark for the design, construction and operation of high-performance green buildings. Not only does LEED provide the tools for owners and operators to have an immediate and measurable impact on their buildings’ performance, but it also promotes a whole-building approach to sustainability by recognizing performance in key areas of human and environmental health. These include: sustainable site development, water savings, energy efficiency, materials selection and indoor environmental quality.

Named for its co-owner, Posada de Mike Rapu is currently under construction on a remote hillside overlooking the Pacific in Te Miro Oone. The amazing landscape, with volcano and sea views, speaks to the senses and embraces harmony with nature.

Upon completion in December 2007, the hotel will offer 30 guest rooms, including four suites, as well as a glass-walled kitchen for dining, a bar, and Casa de Baños Hare Val, an inviting outdoor area with pool, massage salon and open-air Jacuzzis. Building materials include native volcanic rock used by the island’s inhabitants. All of the above and excellent service, too.

Like all explora lodges, Posada de Mike Rapu will serve as a base for explora en Rapa Nui, the company’s Easter Island operations. Travelers can look forward to easy, medium and challenging hikes, as well as bike excursions, which are always guided by explora’s native and bilingual guides, who unveil the secrets and magical beauty of the island and its unique culture, especially the mysterious moai stone statues, for whom it is most renowned.

For more information on Posada de Mike Rapu, or to discover Easter Island with explora en Rapa Nui, please call explora toll free in the U.S. at 1-866-750-6699, email [email protected], or visit the website at  

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