During our road trip in the Grand Circle last month, we did get to try a few hotels along the way in addition to the backcountry campsites we stayed at. We always like staying a local hotels instead of the big chain ones. It supports the local communities we visit and normally leads to new discoveries, excellent food and a better night’s sleep.
We spent one night at the magnificent View Hotel in Monument Valley National Park on the Arizona-Utah border. They had American-made towels (yay!) but unfortunately their complementary body lotion and shampoo were made in China, with eco-something in the name. Of course, being on a not made in China challenge, I don’t see how made in China and eco go together. Other than that, I must say the room was excellent. The restaurant served up some interesting well-made, Native American inspired food, which we got to enjoy with non-alcoholic beer.
The Lake Powell Resort (beautifully located on the lake) must be the most eco-awesome place ever. They had dispensers for the soap instead of little bottles (so did Hotel Blue in ABQ), a recycling station in the room, compostable plastic cups made in USA from recycled material and self shutting balcony doors to preserve energy.
The menu in the resort lounge informed us that all ingredients used were locally sourced whenever possible. The food was good, the view even better.
The resort also had a big gift shop with lots of cool locally made stuff and Native American art. Most of the items were nice to haves, not need to haves, like the magnet I decided to take home. It reads: “The frog does not drink up the pond in which he lives”. If only more people thought about empowering and taking care of the place they live instead of draining it from its resources!
Speaking of magnets, 10 years ago I swear all magnets I saw and bought when traveling around this big country were made in USA. Now, you have to really look for them. It feels wrong to me, shopping for souvenirs made in China in an American national park gift shop.
Can something imported even be classified a souvenir? I think not.