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Conscious Future

Our Conscious Eye On
- Twelve Senses Retreat

Conscious Hotel

Concious Hotel Twelve Senses Retreat 01
Concious Hotel Twelve Senses Retreat 02

Location

Encinitas, USA


Nearest train station

Solana Beach Station


Architecture

Offset Design & Drafting, Thokozani Mabena, Stephen Moneypenny


The Originals

Anke Bodack

Twelve Senses Retreat is a living testament to natural, sustainable, and recycled materials. Owner Anke Bodack transformed and expanded her home—originally built in 1958—to craft an intimate, soulful hotel run entirely on solar power. The property was built using wood from sustainable sources like Kebony and Accoya that has been preserved using vinegar and the Japanese Shou-Sugi Ban technique, which chars wood to preserve it. Stunning tiles for the rooftop bar were made from recycled ocean plastics in collaboration with Seaform. Twelve Senses Retreat is also a hub for the local community, offering yoga and mindfulness practices and sharing sustainable vendors to inspire more conscious practices in the neighborhood.

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Architecture

During construction, only one-third of the original house was taken down. For the new portions, the local sustainable builder used conscious practices and sustainably sourced materials.

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Waste

Twelve Senses composts food waste and buys locally in bulk to reduce packaging. There are recycling bins located throughout the hotel.

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Energy

The hotel is proudly run by 100% solar energy. Nest thermostats monitor the rooms when there are no guests to minimize waste. Windows are dual-glazed and walls are sealed to prevent energy loss.

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Water

Fixtures are water-efficient. Drinking water comes from a local, alkaline water source. The landscaping requires very little water consumption.

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Products & Produce

All bread and coffee, and some farm produce, is sourced locally. All bedding, towels, robes, hair products, and body products are made in California.

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Culture

Twelve Senses welcomes locals to yoga and meditation sessions. The team connects locals with their sustainable builders and shares their sustainable vendors.

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Recreation

The hotel offers yoga, meditation, wellness offerings, surfing lessons, paddleboarding lessons, e-bikes to go into town, and more.

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Accessibility

Guests are encouraged to use the local train station, Lyft, and Uber. The hotel also offers e-bikes.

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Healthy Workplace

Contractors are invited to eat, drink, and join yoga and mindfulness classes for free. The hotel continues to raise employee pay as much as possible.

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Communication

Twelve Senses offers tours of the hotel that explain sustainable building practices. The team is happy to share vendor contacts. Sustainability practices are published on the website.

Learn about our Conscious Hotel Principles

We spoke with Anke Bodack, the Original behind Twelve Senses Retreat, to learn the latest on the hotel's conscious journey.

 

What is your sustainability philosophy?

Everything is full circle. If we take care of Mother Nature, Mother Nature will take care of us. What is better for the environment is better for us. At Twelve Senses Retreat, we always search for a sustainable solution for our building and materials, furniture, bedding and towels, food, energy, waste, and processes.

 

How do you forge a connection to the local community and cultural surroundings?

We love to connect with our community. We use as much local produce as we can, and we invite locals to our mindfulness classes. We also share our sustainable materials and building process (which calls upon sustainable local builders). Our first choice is always to source what we need locally and sustainably. If we can’t find it nearby, we create a larger circle, but the underlying principle is always sustainability.

 

What do you see as the biggest sustainability hurdle for hotels? How are you combating that?

For many hotels, the setup is a challenge. Since we are new and very small, it was easy to get set up in a sustainable way—it’s all in the mindset. Generally, this means a bit more investment upfront, but we feel there is no other choice. Not only is it worth it, but it is very gratifying to know we are on the right path. Our next goals are becoming zero-waste and offering a carbon-neutral option for the guests at check-out.

Sometimes it sounds overwhelming to become more sustainable, but I believe even small actions (like using organic towels and sheets and recycled paper products) are easy to implement and make a difference.

Twelve Senses Retreat Made By Originals

The Originals Anke Bodack

“I meditate every day and this image of me as a hotelier began to crystalize in my mind, a voice saying, ‘This is what I must do!’ ”

Read her story

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