We are all probably familiar with the concept of ‘green’ buildings, and trying to reduce our carbon footprints. With this in mind, when booking a holiday, many are choosing to stay at eco-friendly accommodation. The numbers of Eco hotels, villas and resorts have grown rapidly worldwide, and Tenerife is no exception. In fact, although the Canary Islands were a little slow to get started, Tenerife is now the leading the way in terms of constructing efficient environmentally friendly buildings. A number of ‘bioclimatic homes’ have and are continuing to be produced then rented to tourists as holiday homes in Tenerife.
So what is mean by bioclimatic? Well, bioclimatic buildings are designed based on the local climate and make use of environmental sources, such as sun, wind, air, sky, water, vegetation and soil and utilise the energy they provide. Techniques are applied to the exterior of the buildings ensure effective insulation and air tightness provides warmth in cooler temperatures. This usually by treating the outer walls by using reflective colours and surfaces. The use of solar energy provides heating and lighting and the layout of the building’s interior is designed to utilise power to its maximum capacity. Natural ventilation is used to remove heat in the summer months. This saves on the energy that would otherwise be used by air conditioning. The inhabitants of such a building would obviously have to play a part in utilising these designs, with simple and obvious actions such as opening and closing windows to maintain temperature balance. Many of the houses are sunk in to the ground slightly to provide extra natural warmth from the earth.
Basically, the bioclimatic houses make use of their surroundings, and this works particularly well in sunny, warm, windy Tenerife. The water comes straight from the sea. All are constructed using locally sourced recycled materials, but this in no way means compromising on style or quality. On the contrary, the interiors are colour blended, and skilfully placed plants and fitting soften the appearance. The houses are roomy, have attractive gardens and patio space, and offer a taste of luxury with indoor pools and roof top Jacuzzis, all of course powered by renewable energy.
The other attraction is the location. A development of 24 of these houses resides in Granadilla de Abona, which is right next to the Natural Park in Montana Pelada. This is a stunningly beautiful and peaceful enclave and the homes blend in with the surroundings. Just a stone’s throw from quiet, secluded beaches, this development is also close to the Natural Monument Montana Pelada, an ancient volcano cone. Nearby you will find organic farms, and just ten minutes away is the quiet fishing village of El Medano. The area is popular for hiking, water sports and whale watching, whilst remaining secluded and traditional.
Another key benefit of a visit to a bioclimatic house is the cost of renting. Some are available from around 200 Euros per night, mostly because they are simply so inexpensive to maintain. There are great holiday apartments in Tenerife, perfect for an inexpensive, relaxing yet luxurious eco-friendly family break!