The Brando today announced its LEED platinum certification. The luxury property earned the prestigious designation based on its commitment to conservation and sustainability efforts in the development and overall operation of the pristine island resort. This certification is the culmination of more than six years of work carried out by the resort’s owners, designers and architects, and establishes The Brando as the first project to earn LEED certification in French Polynesia.
The LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) rating system, developed by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), is the foremost program for buildings, homes and communities that are designed, constructed, maintained and operated for improved environmental and human health performance.
“It was understood from the first conversation with Marlon Brando regarding Tetiaroa’s future, that any development must keep the island’s atoll protected and preserved in its native state and be a model of sustainability,” says Richard Bailey, chairman & CEO of Pacific Beachcomber, which built and operates The Brando. “Therefore, it was vitally important that we work alongside LEED professionals in the creation of our conservation and sustainability programs, and we could not be more pleased with this platinum-level achievement.”
The Brando secured LEED certification by implementing practical and measurable strategies and solutions aimed at achieving high performance in: sustainable site development, water savings, energy efficiency, materials selection and indoor environmental quality.
“The Brando’s LEED platinum certification demonstrates tremendous green building leadership,” said Rick Fedrizzi, CEO and founding chair, USGBC. “The urgency of USGBC’s mission has challenged the industry to move faster and reach further than ever before, and The Brando serves as a prime example of just how much we can accomplish.”
The strategies used in the design and construction of the resort to achieve this LEED certification ranged from local, renewable or recycled building materials to a pioneering deep seawater air-conditioning system and renewable energies such as solar energy and coconut oil. As a result, the resort is close to carbon neutrality and self-sustainability.
The strategies include (but not limited to):
- The project has protected at least 50% of the project site excluding the building footprint using native or adapted vegetation.
- Open space has been maximized with open space provided at 90% of the total site area.
- Water efficient landscaping using only indigenous plants.
- 100% of waste water is recycled using a low energy, tidal treatment system that incorporates plants in filtration.
- 100% of irrigation water comes from rainwater recapture and treated wastewater.
Energy & Atmosphere
- The Brando’s Sea Water Air Conditioning system (SWAC) harnesses the cold of the ocean depths and offers low-energy, highly efficient cooling for all the buildings.
- Solar energy produced from 4,000 photovoltaic solar panels along Tetiaroa’s airstrip provide over half the resort’s electrical energy needs and thermal solar collectors provides all of the resort’s hot water.
- A coconut oil (biofuel) power station delivers the other half of The Brando’s energy needs. Fueled by locally produced coconut oil, this renewable power source also supports the local economy.
- Energy cost savings of 96.17% and has offset 91.71% of the total energy costs through renewable energy generated on-site.
Materials & Resources
- 86.56% wood-based building materials are certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC).
Indoor Environmental Quality
- Increased ventilation in all buildings results in healthier environment for occupants.
Innovation in Design
- Innovation in design optimizes energy performance and maximizes open space.
- Green Tours are comprehensive visits to The Brando’s eco-friendly facilities including the Ecostation, SWAC building, the coconut oil-powered electric plant, the water production plant, the waste separation center, the organic garden, bee hives, and solar panel sites.
In addition to the LEED certification, The Brando has also earned recognition for its environmental efforts including Virtuoso’s 2015 Best of the Best Sustainable Tourism Leadership Award—Hotels; a Gold Magellan Award for Hospitality Overall: Eco-Friendly “Green” Resort/Hotel from Travel Weekly; and Best Eco-Tourism Property from Luxury Travel Magazine. The resort is also a founding member of National Geographic Unique Lodges of the World, a collection of boutique hotels demonstrating a commitment to sustainability, authenticity and excellence.