Many hotels and resorts claim to be eco-friendly and often use it as a selling point. But how eco-friendly are they actually? Would the acts of harvesting rainwater, installing energy-efficient bulbs, use less washing chemicals and encourage re-use of towel and sheets be enough to categorize them as eco-friendly? Some would proudly claim so but the people at Eight Acres are not only doing a lot more than that, they are continuously improvising.
For the uninitiated, Eight Acres is a boutique lodge located in a valley among the fruit orchards, oil palm and rubber plantations in Raub. Like the name implies, Eight Acres is indeed 8 acres in size and was previously a basically a jungle consisting of oil palm and durian trees.
After a few years of careful planning and execution, the resort has finally finished its major constructions, which includes the Brick House (a bungalow consisting of six different themed rooms), a hydro system to power up the resort, a five-step water filtration system as well as some camping tents for the more adventurous.
Durian trees are aplenty at Eight Acres and if you are here during the durian season, you would even get to pick and eat them as soon as they fall off for a minimal fee. Two main varieties of durians could be found here: the highly popular and in my opinion the best – Musang King and D24.
And if there’s one thing Eight Acres is proud of their durians, it would be fact that they are grown without any use of pesticides. So even though the fruits don’t look as perfect as those you could buy on the streets, they taste better. The same for the water too – which is sourced from the stream hence cooling and more refreshing. Plus, it does not taste as ‘strong’ as what we get back in the city since it is void of chlorine.
Besides guests and staff, farm animals roam freely in the resort too. The idea is to rehabilitate the land back to its original condition with hopes of attracting the inhabitants of the wild that used to make their home here. Hornbills are one of them.
Among the six available rooms (Renewal, Contemplation, Discovery, Exploration, Surreality and Culture) we were given the Discovery room which can accomodate three @ RM660/night (no toiletries included so bring your own). The room has two single beds and is entirely surrounded by walls of book shelves filled with donated books.
If you look closely at the room’s finishing you will find that they do not look new although the Brick House had just been completed not long ago. This is because most of the building materials for the Brick House are from reclaimed sources. For example, the wooden flooring are recycled from old buildings, while the walls are constructed using blocks of compressed wood chips.