Cinnamon’s Trincomalee resort completes five years of sustainable operations


A beach cleanup session taking place


Chaaya Blu Trincomalee



Hotel staff actively get involved in cleaning the beach


The jewel of the east coast, the retro-chic Chaaya Blu Trincomalee belonging to the Cinnamon Hotels & Resorts chain, celebrated five eventful years on 10 May.
Over the past five years, the hotel has evolved into the prime leisure destination on the east coast, not only because of its uber stylish offering but also due to its status as the best whale watching hub in the country.
Built around the theme of the sun, sand and water-based leisure activities, Chaaya Blu Trincomalee offers an exciting whale watching experience for guests that is built on sustainable and responsible tourism practices. Significantly, the hotel has earned its reputation by demonstrating a robust sustainability framework that ensures that all its stakeholders are part of the hotel’s success story.
While whale watching offers a novel experience for guests, it is a vital lifeline for the local community. The hotel has employed local fishermen (who ply their boats for whale watching) and fitted their vessels with non-polluting, silent engines so as not to disturb the marine life. The hotel has invested heavily in acquiring such equipment and infrastructure to develop a professionally-managed whale watching operation for its guests.
Commencing with two boat operators, the hotel has built up a pool of eight fishermen who regularly operate the whale watching expeditions under the supervision of Chaaya Blu Trincomalee. The hotel has empowered these boat operators with knowledge about the dos and don’ts of preserving marine life and ensuring the safety of guests. Every whale watching trip features a naturalist who shares his knowledge with guests.
Since the hotel commenced operations five years ago, it has increased the percentage of local residents in its employment, providing a secure and stable livelihood source for people from surrounding communities. These employees are further supported through the provision of free English and soft skills lessons necessary for future success in their careers.
Another far-reaching sustainability initiative undertaken by Chaaya Blu Trincomalee is the preservation and clean-up of Pigeon Island, famed for its live corals and rich marine life. Over-visitation and weak environmental regulations are putting the corals and marine life on the island at risk. Chaaya Blu Trincomalee has taken on the challenge of educating their guests who visit Pigeon Island about the ecological impact of coral reefs and the importance of not walking on or breaking off corals as souvenirs.
The hotel’s efforts at nurturing the natural wonders of Pigeon Island have been commended by the Sri Lanka Navy. Furthermore, the hotel organised a clean-up of the coral reef, removing 250 starfish from the coral reefs as they feed on and destroy corals.
Chaaya Blu Trincomalee also works with local municipal authorities to ensure that proper waste disposal methods are carried out on the island. Annually, the hotel collects and disposes of nearly two tonnes of plastic waste left behind by tourists, even extending its concern to beach clean-up campaigns.
Chaaya Blu Trincomalee is aspiring towards zero carbon footprint status and is continuously monitoring all the key environmental indicators to achieve year-on-year reduction. The hotel recycles water up to 100%, thereby causing no run-offs. It also undertakes water softening treatment, as only hard water is available in the region. The hotel is working hard to minimise waste, bringing down its waste per guest ratio significantly.
Benchmarking many such sustainable practices, Chaaya Blu Trincomalee has an enduring vision to enhance its clientele while ramping up its dynamism quotient over the next decade.

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