NEW YORK, Aug. 18 /PRNewswire/ -- Conde Nast Traveler announced the winners of the magazine's third annual World Savers Awards, honoring travel companies from around the world for their leadership in social responsibility in five key areas: poverty alleviation, cultural and/or environmental preservation, education programs, wildlife conservation, and health initiatives.
"Despite these challenging economic times, corporate social responsibility is as important as ever," Editor-in-Chief Klara Glowczewska said. "The travel industry is on track to generate $7.3 trillion in revenue this year -- a number that represents an enormous opportunity improve our planet, and our World Savers Awards recognize those companies turning that potential into a reality."
The 2009 World Savers Awards Winners:
Education Programs: Puntacana Resort & Club.
This luxury resort in the Dominican Republic has built schools to accommodate its workers and their children.
Poverty Alleviation: The Haciendas.
This small chain located in Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula turned abandoned haciendas into chic resorts and hired local villagers as construction workers, waiters and accountants and helped others start their own businesses
Wildlife Conservation: Bushmans Kloof.
This South African safari lodge has worked to replenish the wildlife in the surrounding area.
Preservation (Environmental/Cultural): Air New Zealand and Kimpton Hotels.
Air New Zealand is leading the way in exploring alternate fuel sources and Kimpton, in addition to requiring all its dry cleaning vendors to recycle hangers, has introducted 70 mandatory eco-friendly products and practices.
Health Initiatives: Accor.
With 111 hotels in Africa, where HIV/AIDS hits the hardest, this hotel chain launched an in-house educational program and started testing all its employees for the disease.
Overall Winners By Industry Category:
Small Chains: The Haciendas
Large Chains: Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company
City Hotel: Willard InterContinental
Small Resorts: Bushmans Kloof
Large Resorts: Puntacana Resort & Club
Cruise Lines: Ecoventura
Airlines: Japan Airlines
Tour Operators: Gap Adventures
The 2009 World Savers Awards are featured in the September issue, which hits newsstands on Tuesday, August 25. World Savers Awards winners will be recognized at an award ceremony September 21 at the annual Conde Nast Traveler World Savers Congress in New York City.
World Savers Awards Methodology: To determine the award finalists and winners, Conde Nast Traveler editors reviewed over 100 applications and narrowed them to 36 finalists. An independent panel of 20 judges, comprised of leaders from the travel industry and non-governmental organizations, rated how applicants exercised social responsibility in 5 key areas: poverty alleviation, cultural and/or environmental preservation, education programs, wildlife conservation, and health initiatives. There were 8 categories of travel company: small hotel chains, large hotel chains, city hotels, small lodges and resorts, large lodges and resorts, tour operators, cruiselines, and airlines. This year judges also looked at overall scores, to give credit to companies with admirable programs in a number of areas.
Ralph Buckley, director, International Centre for Ecotourism Research, Griffith University, Australia
Bill Chameides, dean, Nicholas School of the Environment, Duke University
Laurie David, NRDC trustee; environmental activist; co-producer, An Inconvenient Truth
Dorinda Elliott, deputy editor, Conde Nast Traveler
Marcia Gay Harden, environmentalist; Oscar-winning actress
Karl Holz, president, Disney Cruise Line
Martha Honey, co-director, Center for Responsible Travel
Kara Hurst, managing director, East Coast, Business for Social Responsibility
Neel Inamdar, senior adviser, ecotourism, Conservation International
Rob Katz, CEO, RockResorts/Vail Resorts
Ron Mader, director, Planeta.com
Bill Marriott, chairman and CEO, Marriott International
Hitesh Mehta, landscape architect and sustainable tourism planner, HM Design
Brian Mullis, president, Sustainable Travel International
Bruce Poon Tip, CEO, Gap Adventures
Kate Roberts, vice president, Population Services International
Andrea Ross, director of tours/marketing, Journeys Within
Shannon Stowell, president, Adventure Travel Trade Association
Tensie Whelan, president, Rainforest Alliance
Brook Wilkinson, consumer news correspondent, Conde Nast Traveler
Timothy Wirth, president, United Nations Foundation
For a complete list of winners, runners up, honorable mentions, and judges panel, visit http://www.concierge.com/cntraveler/articles/501373.
SOURCE Conde Nast Traveler