Four tourism projects recently won Phoenix Awards
from the Society of American Travel Writers.
Winners of the
2014 Phoenix Awards include a non-profit organization aimed at
restoring and sustaining the beauty of Hawaii, a foundation with
the goal of preserving the renowned art deco-style of architecture
in America’s heartland, a Chinese cultural retreat that provides
an example of a respected model for sustainable cultural tourism
and America’s largest family estate which has been preserved and
maintained as a National Historic Landmark.
Awards were created by SATW in 1969 to recognize conservation and
preservation efforts of individuals and organizations as they
relate to travel. The four winning tourism projects
The Linden Centre
Linden Centre is a nationally protected building – the Yang Family
Courtyard in the Himalayan foothills of Southwest China – that has
been restored into a cultural retreat for guests interested in
learning more about local customs such as culinary, painting, writing, photography, holistic health and antique appreciation.
Established in 2008 by American-born, yet long-time Chinese
residents, Brian and Jeanee Linden, the historic hotel has been authentically preserved and facilitates cross-cultural
understanding by engaging local residents in guest programming.
The Linden Centre is a respected model for sustainable cultural
tourism in China, and the owners often confer with provincial and national government officials on prudent and appropriate tourism
development alternatives to current mass-tourism models.
In addition to The Linden Centre, the
Lindens have opened two other sites: The Education Annex, home to
a series of innovative learning programs, including the Sidwell
Friends' semester program and Shanghai American School's Micro
Campus; and The Linden Commons, which houses ceramics and painting
studios, a cooking school, restaurants, spa and 14 suites. The
latter, also a national relic, is one of the most pristine
examples of pre-Revolutionary architecture in Southwest China.
four awards granted this year, The Linden Centre was only non
Hawaiian Legacy Restoration
Since its inception four years ago, HLRI
– the non-profit arm of Hawaii Island-based sustainable forestry
company, Hawaiian Legacy Hardwoods – has planted more than 250,000
endemic koa, sandalwood and other endangered Hawaiian species
across more than 650 acres on the upper slopes of the Mauna Kea
volcano on the Island of Hawaii. Guests of the newly launched
Legacy Tours can now plant their own koa Legacy Tree and visit the
Through a combination of revenue streams –
including tree sponsorship, tree planning eco-tours and certified
carbon credits – HLRI has provided debt-free reforestation,
environmental and cultural education to the public.
Foundation for Architecture (TFA)
Early 20th century oil
barons – including Skelly, Getty and Phillips – committed to
making Tulsa a cosmopolitan capital by commissioning great urban
architecture of the era. Tulsa’s collection of art deco buildings
rivals New York City and Miami in importance, but by the late
1990s these buildings were in disrepair and often at risk of
demolition. Recognizing the importance of preserving these
historic structures, the Tulsa Foundation for Architecture was
established in 1995 to lead the renovation efforts and maintain an
archive of historic building plans and drawings.
all-volunteer organization has repeatedly demonstrated a
dedication to help raise awareness, identify funds, obtain tax credits, save threatened structures and guide restoration of
significant art deco structures including the Philtower Building,
Mayo Hotel, Mayo Building, Atlas Life Building (now a Courtyard by
Marriott), among others.
The TFA has been the spark for
revitalization efforts downtown and helped preserve the
distinctive architectural heritage for the city, its visitors and
residents. TFA hosts guided tours of downtown art deco buildings,
averaging 40 guests per tour.
This 250-room family estate, the largest in
the U.S., was designed by renowned architect Richard Morris Hunt
and took 1,000 laborers five years to build. The original 125,000
acre-grounds were planned and created by Frederick Law Olmstead
(designer of New York’s Central Park.) First occupied by George
Washington Vanderbilt in 1895, today the Biltmore Estate is North
Carolina’s most-visited attraction. Since William A.V. Cecil, a
grandson of the founder, took over the tourism side of the estate,
the property has added to its complex a respected award-winning
winery, inn, special events, gardens, restaurants and shops.
many great private homes have fallen into disrepair, the Cecil
family uses tourism receipts to preserve and maintain this
National Historic Landmark. William Cecil said he “didn’t preserve
Biltmore to make money; he made money to preserve Biltmore”.
Biltmore continues to honor the 125-year Vanderbilt legacy by
preserving the 8,000-acre grounds and 75 acres of formal gardens through several sustainability initiatives: solar panel
installation offsetting 20% of the estate’s energy needs; a
fruit/vegetable garden; 500 head Angus cattle and 500 sheep; and
winery to supply over a dozen restaurants and hotels.
SATW Phoenix Awards
SATW members were invited to nominate individuals,
communities, businesses or organizations that have contributed to
a quality travel experience through conservation, preservation,
beautification or environmental efforts.
the evolution and positive impacts of worthy projects were
considered by the SATW Phoenix Awards Committee, led by co-chairs
Bea Broda and Cheryl Hargrove, and were submitted with
recommendations to the SATW Board of Directors for approval.
T. Mullis, CEO & Founder of Sustainable Travel International,
joined other Phoenix committee members – Diane Daniel, Marilyn
Marx, Cathy Senecal, and Kathy Straach – as an expert advisor for
the evaluation process.
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