Above: Each of the Alilaâ€™s villas comes with a private pool and pavilion.
Green-minded globetrotters will feel right at home at Alila Villas Uluwatu (alilavillas.com; doubles from US$725). Opening in April on Baliâ€™s southern Bukit peninsula, the cliffside property is one of the first resorts in Asia to be designed and built according to the guidelines of Green Globe, an Australian NGO that sets strict eco-tourism standards. Only locally sourced and sustainable materials were used in its construction, from recycled wood to the creamy white palimanan stone that frames the 63 villas. Water conservation comes in the form of rainwater catchments and gray-water treatment systems, and in unirrigated gardens planted with foliage native to the arid Bukit. To reduce energy consumption, the clean-lined villas have been designed to open to the sea breeze, thus reducing the need for air-conditioning; their roofs are also topped with volcanic rock, a natural insulator. Not that any of this comes at the expense of creature comforts: amenities include 500-thread-count Ploh bed sheets, a pillow menu, 24-hour butler service, and private pools with sweeping views of the Indian Ocean. Going green has never felt so good. â€“Chris Kirkpatrick
Originally appeared in the February/March 2009 print issue of DestinAsian magazine (â€śGypsy Tales: Alilaâ€™s New Edgeâ€ť)