Behind the Green is all about giving you more insight into the places we feature. Our interviews reveal what happens behind the scenes, tell stories of the people on the ground, exposes the challenges they face, as well as the communities they impact; essentially the bits you don’t usually hear.
Meet Bjorn, the CEO of Boulder Bay Eco Resort. He first went to Thailand in the late 70s and eventually found his way to Myanmar and Boulder Island. He is a self-proclaimed entrepreneur, passionate about his businesses and always getting stuck into new projects.
Learn more about Boulder Bay Eco Resort here>
How did Boulder Bay Eco Resort come to have a sustainability focus?‘There’s no denying that the world is in peril and Myanmar is a challenge as a new frontier, so we wanted to influence the government. There are over 800 islands in this archipelago and not many people know about them, but they need to be protected. We wanted to influence the government to open them up in a sustainable way.’
What do guests find most memorable about Boulder Bay?‘It is a little paradise island. It has a rainforest and 8 beaches and people love coming here and getting back to nature. There are so many hiking trails where people can go and detox from a hectic life.’
Can you tell us more about Project Manaia and the impact it has had?‘It is run by my friend Manuel from Austria. He’s a marine biologist and is extremely passionate about the ocean, so I invited him out to the island. The project focuses on coral regeneration and protecting the flora and fauna. There are a lot of coral reefs around the island and we’re hoping that this project can spread to the other islands as well.’
What are some of the best eco activities guests can take part in on the island?‘There’s so much to do. Snorkelling, kayaking and diving. Or you can go trekking in the forest on one of the many different routes. The elevation on the island is quite low, so everyone can get involved.’
What is the best, local, sustainable dish that you serve on the island?‘All the food here is great and we always aim for local produce. We have an organic garden and buy from local fishermen. As we’re on an island, you can look forwards to lots of seafood, which is very popular. We’re also looking at getting a chicken farm.’
Which of your eco initiatives or practices are you most proud of to date?‘I think I’m just proud of what we’re doing as a whole and trying to get the people that come here to understand too. We like to look at the big picture. We have organic soaps for guests and biodegradable sun cream, so that people learn the normal stuff is bad for the coral reefs.’
What advice would you have for travellers looking for a genuinely eco-conscious place to stay?‘Come here! It’s a beautiful place to escape from a hectic life. You can just relax and enjoy nature. I think it is so important to feel close to nature.’
What’s next for Boulder Bay Eco Resort?‘We have to try and keep everything small; we don’t want to expand and lose the charm of this place. We’re going to work on our waste management, which is so important for a place like this. We do weekly beach clean ups, but no matter how much time you spend picking up trash, more is always washing up, and it’s not even from this part of the world, but that’s more something that the government needs to sort out. Overall, we’re just going to be fine tuning our sustainability and adding to it. For instance, getting more solar panels and maybe electric boats.’
Learn more about Boulder Bay Eco Resort and do your own green checks here>