Seven new eco retreats opening soon in the UAE

Sites range from a mountain lodge in Ras Al Khaimah to a restored pearl merchant's house in Sharjah

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As travel returns after the pandemic, tourists are more conscious than ever about the environmental impact of their trips, with more travellers seeking to reduce their carbon footprint when it comes to holidays.

In light of that trend, at this year's Arabian Travel Market in Dubai, which took place earlier this month, there were several new eco resorts announced for the UAE.

Here are seven sustainable stays opening in the Emirates very soon.

1. Saij Mountain Lodge, Ras Al Khaimah

A rendering of an eco-tent at Saij Mountain Lodge in Ras Al Khaimah. Photo: RAK Media Office

Next year, Saij Mountain Lodge will join Ras Al Khaimah’s eco offerings. The sustainably managed resort is part of The Mantis Collection and will feature 35 luxury eco lodges built with natural and sustainable materials.

Water conservation, energy efficiency and minimal waste generation are high on the agenda at this mountain retreat where guests will be encouraged to reconnect with nature and look after mind, body and soul.

2. Earth Altitude, Ras Al Khaimah

Earth Altitude will open in Ras Al Khaimah with spectacular mountain views. Photo: Earth Hotels

Earth Altitude is an eco-based pop-up hotel concept that will open permanently on the UAE’s highest mountain by the end of 2022.

The boutique-style resort will offer amazing views over the surrounding landscape and there will also be an activity centre where guests can book hiking, trekking, cycling and more.

A fitness suite, homegrown food concepts and an infinity-style swimming pool with views over Jebel Jais aim to make this the perfect rugged getaway.

3. The Nest by Sonara, Dubai

The exclusive, eco-friendly camp consists of 14 'nests'. Photo: The Nest by Sonara

Coming to the Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve in September is The Nest by Sonara. This luxury eco-friendly camp consists of 14 structures that blend into the dunes being respectful of the surroundings.

Designed by architect Gianni Ranaulo, each of the “nests” has a bedroom, en suite bathroom and outdoor majlis for sunset-watching. Each structure has a dedicated attendant for true luxury eco-glamping.

4. Cloud7 AlSawan camp, Ras Al Khaimah

Cloud7 AlSalwan camp, Jebel Jais, will open in Ras Al Khaimah in 2023. Photo: RAK Tourism

Putting the local community at the core of its operations and working with a ground-up policy when it comes to being more environmentally aware, Cloud7 AlSawan camp Jebel Jais is the latest from Kerten Hospitality.

Scheduled to open in 2023, the camp offers a glamping experience with 60 units crafted from sustainable materials. The mountain surrounds will give travellers access to trekking, hiking and amazing Ras Al Khaimah vistas while the nearby farm will be a place to see Arabian falcons, camels and horses.

Glampers will also have a front row seat to local camel racing.

5. Nomad by Mysk, Sharjah

Sharjah's new Nomad trailers will move location each season to make the most of the emirate's weather patterns. Photo: Shurooq

Announced last year and expected to launch before the end of 2022, Nomad by Mysk is an Airstream trailer experience heading to Sharjah.

Consisting of 20 trailers that let guests get closer to nature, Nomad will move every season to a new beauty spot or adventure site in Sharjah to make the most of the weather at different times of the year.

The fully-equipped silver Nomad Airstream vehicles are being designed to ensure that guests leave minimal impact on their natural surroundings wherever they are based.

6. The Serai Wing, Bait Khalid bin Ibrahim, Sharjah

The Serai Wing, Bait Khalid bin Ibrahim is a restored 19th-century home. Photo: Shurooq

Preserving historical buildings is one of the best ways to be sustainable, which is why the Chedi Al Bait hotel in Sharjah gets a mention in this list.

The GHM Hotel is adding The Serai Wing, Bait Khalid bin Ibrahim, to its property portfolio by the end of the year.

Housed in a restored pearl merchant’s 19th-century home, the building will be transformed into a boutique wing of the luxury hotel and will give guests a unique insight into Emirati life as it was more than 100 years ago.

7. Najd Al Meqsar Village, Sharjah

Najd Al Meqsar Village in the coastal city of Khorfakkan, Sharjah. Photo: Shurooq

Najd Al Meqsar Village in the coastal city of Khorfakkan is another new eco-offering for Sharjah. The project will involve 13 houses in the 100-year-old Najd Al Meqsar Village being restored and transformed into heritage-style hotel units.

Under the shadow of the 300-year-old Meqsar Fortress, the eco-accommodation will join seven existing hotel units in the area.

As part of the project, private farm villas, hiking trails, horse-riding routes and tracks for electric club cars are also being developed.

Read more: new equine-focused wellness resort to open on Ras Al Khaimah's AlMatar farm

Updated: May 19, 2022, 6:12 AM
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