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Green Vacation Rentals

by Sandra Ramani

If you’ve ever wondered what it’s like to live on an organic farm, a converted farmhouse or an eco beach house, try renting one this summer and find out

vacation rentals

See “Mid-Century Modern Beach House,” below.

Helios Eco-House

Bend, Oregon

vacation rentals

Featuring three bedrooms and three baths, this 2,145-square-foot residence is Oregon’s first LEED Gold for Homes-certified vacation rental.  Built with non-toxic materials and using sustainable and energy-efficient practices (plus Energy Star washer and drier), the solar-powered house also helps guests breathe easy with CertiPUR-US-certified eco-mattresses, 1,000+ thread-count eco-fiber sheets and eco-fiber-filed duvets.

Design aficionados will swoon, too: The mid-century modern decor includes an Eames dining table, vintage Vaghi swivel chair, Jorge Pensi ceiling fans, and perks like heated floors, oversized showers and Jacuzzis. Available via: FlipKey, flipkey.com/bend-vacation-rentals/p180543; from $275 a night (maximum six guests)

An Organic Farm

The Pipeline Lodge at Meleanas Farm in Haleiwa, Hawaii

vacation rentals

Dreaming of living on your own organic farm? Grab some friends and head to this slice of paradise set on the top of a working farm on Hawaii’s North Shore. Using solar energy and hot water heating, eco soaps and cleaning products, water filters, and an easy-to-use recycling system, the four-bedroom, two-bath house is stocked with new furnishings and appliances, and can be rented as a whole (sleeps 11 total), or as just the upstairs or downstairs. There’s plenty of outdoor living space and easy access to the beach and a 1,100-acre nature reserve. Available via: FlipKey, flipkey.com/haleiwa-vacation-rentals/p420385; from $150 per night for upstairs only to $2500 a week for the whole house (maximum 11 guests)

Converted Farmhouse

Le Corti di Cannamara in Sicily, Italy

vacation rentals

Gather 13 friends and head to the idyllic shores of southwestern Sicily for la dolce vita, eco-style. This converted farmhouse has seven bedrooms, plenty of outdoor lounging and dining space (including a shaded loggia with al fresco kitchen), and perks like a movie room, herb garden, fireplaces, pool, and even its own hammam with adjacent relaxation area.

If all that weren’t cool enough, the sea-view villa employs solar panels and biomass boilers that run on olive tree husks (readily available from the nearby olive groves), and the upstairs bedrooms are primarily lit and ventilated by skylight-type windows. Plus, there’s a “secret” rose garden. Available via: Think Sicily, thethinkingtraveller.com/thinksicily; from $7,720 per week (maximum 14 guests)

Mid-Century Modern Beach House

Del Mar, California

vacation rentals

The owners/designers of this one-bedroom, one-bath nano-house, set in a hillside beach town north of San Diego, went for “less is more” in their renovations, aiming for maximum living space with minimal environmental impact. Guests will find efficient LED and CFL lighting, a water filtration system, and the use of salvaged and recycled materials like mahogany, Baltic Birch, and polished concrete—plus stylish new and vintage furnishings.

The owners live in the main house next door and are happy to take guests surfing or on a hike in nearby Torrey Pines National Park—or leave you to enjoy the chill vibe. Available via: Airbnb, airbnb.com/rooms/1655640; from $139 a night (maximum two guests)

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