What's inside? Sustainable Interiors for Interior Design

"An interior is the natural projection of the soul" ~ Coco Chanel

"An interior is the natural projection of the soul" ~ Coco Chanel

Saturday was World Interiors Day, celebrated round the world throughout May.

When sustainability is at core, interiors usually reflect values as much as external projects and charity initiatives.

At Earth Changers' destinations, so much is always going on with community, conservation and culture, we're usually highlighting our partners' outside places, people & purpose and so don't often look at what's inside.

So this week, we've teamed up with Elizabeth from Sustainable Interior Design UK to get to the heart centre of trips and offer a design view of some of our partners' souls. Here's what she had to say:


Lapa Rios, Costa Rica

As a guest here, you have a real connection to the surrounding environment of the rainforest and the Pacific Ocean, sympathetically designed using natural, local materials enhanced to blend with the natural setting.

There is a sense of being at one with nature without foregoing any comfort.

All the senses have been considered to maximize the experience of each guest. Large open locally sourced wooden walled screens allow for panoramic views of the ocean and the canopy of exotic trees, to be experienced with all the senses and allow for natural ventilation.

The beautiful locally sourced and crafted wooden floors and the full height wooden beamed ceilings enhance a sense of space to each eco bungalow at Lapa Rios.

The feature handmade four poster wooden beds are sheer luxury, with airy sensual sheer white muslin canopies. Luxurious organic cotton bedding and locally made textiles, the colours and textures blending with the surrounding landscape. All of the handmade locally sourced wooden furniture, has simplistic organic shapes that are about appreciating the materials used.

Guests step out onto a wide wooden private deck to experience the breathtaking views, sights and sounds of the ocean, rain forest and birds. Each is complete with its own lounge furniture all made from locally sourced materials.

What could be better than an open air outdoor shower, with planting, designed for complete privacy, in lush lime green surrounded by rainforest? An amazing experience in itself.

The internal bathroom materials of granite, green and mesh walls and wood remind you that you are always at one with nature here, with all energy harnessed from the elements in this enviable position: solar water heating and wind from the ocean to pump and produce power.

Lighting is simplistic and creates a wonderful ambiance at night with the shimmering moonlight sky from the panoramic ocean sky.

Click here for more information and to enquire about Lapa Rios > 


Jicaro Island, Nicaragua

What could be more idyllic than escaping to a totally sustainable tropical island getaway, in your very own two storey eco lodge?

"Built using local materials, each casita blends effortlessly into the surrounding landscape of exotic trees at the edge of the lake.

There is a true sense of experiencing nature from each of the architecturally well-designed eco lodges, raised high above the ground to encompass the elements in full natural glory, and like being in a spacious treehouse.

The interiors have a sense of space and design. Fascinatingly, the interior of each eco lodge has furniture made from the salvaged wood from Hurricane Felix in 2007. The locally-sourced FSC alliance certified tropical hardwoods used in the construction are aesthetically pleasing utilizing natural light, space and materials in harmony with each other, and the simple furnishings of white and green compliment the colours of the natural surroundings.

The private deck area of each lodge is high up in the trees providing natural shade, with glorious views and connection to nature and the lake from your own hammock.

The ambient dining experience, has furniture beautifully and simplistically constructed from locally sourced wood for comfort. Outdoor dining is enhanced by the glorious views".

Click here for more information and to enquire about Jicaro Island Ecolodge >


Chumbe Island Coral Park

The go-to destination for lovers of the ocean, Chumbe Island is the world's first private Marine Protected Area and coral Park.

Each beach bungalow is designed with surreal organic shapes that reflect the local boat building tradition and soar above the sky, connecting you to the ocean.

There is a sense of being a real life Robinson Crusoe here in your own handmade constructed boat-shaped beach bungalow.

The blues and yellows used for the interiors reflect the surrounding colours of the ocean and beach, with local folk art creating a sense of place with the local culture and traditions here.

The blue screeded floors give a sense of floating in a boat on an azure ocean, with driftwood furniture, with its naturally forming shapes to create interest.

The open outdoor bathrooms in organic shapes allow light and nature to be fully experienced, with modern white sanitaryware and natural grey tones that complement the driftwood used.

Views are architecturally framed from the semi upturned boat-shaped dining area which connects you to the ocean, ambiently lit with candlelight.

Click here for more information and to enquire about Chumbe Island Coral Park >


Campi ya Kanzi, Kenya

A boutique sustainable eco safari run by the local Maasai community, which redefines luxury for a true sense of the real Africa, whilst preserving the natural habitat of the wildlife and supporting local Maasai people.

There is a sense of stepping back in time to a romantic bygone age of the African explorer, rather like a like a scene from Out of Africa. The safari eco lodges are made entirely from local materials, which embrace style and luxury.

The large open windows and bare local wood construction give you a sense of being in a tree house. Ethical animals skins adorn the wooden floors and an expansive mural of the Masai landscape is a focal point, above wide four poster beds.

The use of natural stone and wood blends effortlessly, with old safari camp gaslight style lanterns in the bathroom. The dining areas and lounge areas provide ever more luxury and comfort sympathetically designed usinglocal materials and in an old worldly timeless style".

Click here for more information and to enquire about Campi ya Kanzi >

Thanks to Elizabeth at Sustainable Interior Design UK for her perspective!