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The homecoming of the Malabar Grey Hornbill at Club Mahindra Madikeri

The homecoming of the Malabar Grey Hornbill at Club Mahindra Madikeri

Published : 3/27/2024 | Category : Business

Club Mahindra Madikeri is India’s first Triple Net “0” rated resort which includes Net Zero Energy, Net Zero Water, and Zero waste to landfill.

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Executive Summary

Madikeri, headquartered at Coorg, is a picturesque town in the state of Karnataka. Club Mahindra, the flagship brand of Mahindra Holiday and Resorts India Limited (MHRIL) decided to set up a resort at Madikeri out of a defunct coffee plantation. Creating a haven for flora and fauna was as significant a goal, as attracting human guests to the resort. The construction was meticulously designed for the resort to co-exist harmoniously with surrounding trees that already existed. Thousands of trees were planted additionally, for biodiversity to flourish in the region. This blog encapsulates Club Mahindra’s multi-disciplinary initiatives through this project and its impact on biodiversity.

Club Mahindra Madikeri is India’s first Triple Net “0” rated resort which includes Net Zero Energy, Net Zero Water, and Zero waste to landfill.


Club Mahindra Madikeri, spread over 126464.26 m² with a built-up area of 22257.7m² has embraced an eco-friendly ethos during construction. Initiatives such as thick vegetation and plantation, insulated roofs, and local natural materials used in construction have brought down the ambient temperature by around 3°C within the resort. The fruit-bearing trees, water ponds, and the affable climate have created a welcoming habitat for the bird species to return and thrive, resulting in the return of various birds and animals, including the Malabar Grey Hornbill. And it is not just one bird. More than 161 species of birds have been recorded in the region in recent times, attracted by the tall trees that Club Mahindra Madikeri houses. The Wild boar are regular visitors at the resort. House sparrows and Malabar Whistling thrush are a common sight. Their chirping sounds and whistling are music to ears. The return of endangered and vulnerable species of birds and animals, and rare species of trees create a picturesque ecological tapestry that captivates the senses at Madikeri.

Malabar Grey Hornbill

Club Mahindra, Madikeri today prides itself on becoming India’s first Triple “0” rated resort which includes Net Zero Energy, Net Zero Water, and Zero waste to landfill. The resort was certified for Net Zero Energy and has achieved global water leadership with a Net Water Positive Platinum certification by IGBC. The certification is a recognition of water conservation and promotion of water security at a national level. It was also certified for Net Zero Waste by TUV in FY23. Mahindra Holidays is India’s first hospitality company to join the global campaign RE100 and EP100. It has also won the prestigious recognition as India’s first bio-diversity-certified resort. CII-IBBI conducted a detailed case study at Club Mahindra, Madikeri on Biodiversity Valuation and Ecological protected areas in 2018. The study was published in the CII Magazine.


Net Zero Energy initiatives

  • Club Mahindra, Madikeri implemented an 804 kW solar rooftop photovoltaic plant at the resort and a solar carport in the car park areas. The solar installations not only avoided GHG emissions but also reduced significant operational costs from drawing electricity from the grid.

  • Besides, initiatives such as thick vegetation and plantation, insulated roofs, and local natural materials used in construction have eliminated the need for air conditioning.

  • The resort with 220 rooms seamlessly integrates into nature, offering a unique and sustainable retreat with 100% natural air-conditioning with the temperature inside the resort lower by around 3°C. compared to ambient temperature. Solar rooftop panels insulate the ceilings of the rooms from direct heat.

  • Several energy-saving initiatives such as Motion sensor-controlled washrooms, Regulated Geysers, Timer controlled external lights, Heat Pumps, and BLDC fans have led to an energy performance index of 74.4 kW per m² per year against a Benchmark of 313 kW per m² per year as per Bureau of Energy efficiency.

Net Zero Water initiatives

  • Water-saving measures, wastewater recycling, and rainwater harvesting were key initiatives. 4R (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, and Rainwater Harvest) approach significantly reduced drawing water from borewells and used rainwater instead, for operational use.

  • More than 70% of the water is recycled and reused. The Resort has natural streams within the premises which are diverted to a 380 kL capacity pond. Rainwater collection from the pathway is also streamed to the Natural Pond. Club Mahindra, Madikeri has identified the most water catchment area in various locations and constructed 14 Rainwater Harvesting Pits.

  • Improvement in water efficiency and reduction of raw water usage has led to a reduction in annual water consumption to the tune of about 30-50% concerning the National baseline and a reduction of 30% in water costs.

Water Sprinkler

Net Zero Waste to Landfill Initiatives

  • Nature-centric design, responsible sourcing of eco-friendly and bio-degradable materials reducing debris during construction are among key initiatives and include responsible handling of waste during operations, reusing the waste as much as possible, and recycling the remaining waste.

  • The resort also installed a bio-digester on site and turned food waste into a valuable resource to generate biogas. Besides reducing waste, the initiative also saved on LPG costs. Segregation of waste, use of cloth bags, and elimination of plastic are further initiatives

  • Sewage-treated water is used for our fulfillment of flushing water purposes by a 60:40 ratio of Pond water and STP-treated water. Conservation of freshwater sources by using recycled sewage-treated water for garden irrigation. Approx. 70% of the resort water consumption is recycled and reused in the flushing and gardening.

Conservation of Flora and Fauna

  • The resort with 31.25 acres of property is covered with rainforest and is a livelihood for Flora and fauna. The resort has been built around nature with lush green rainforests as balcony views. Indoor landscape planting improves the indoor air quality, besides enhancing the aesthetics.

  • The endemic species protected and maintained are Elaeocarpus recurves (Cholarudralksham or Rudraksha) and endemic tree species to Southern Western Ghats, Cyathea nilgirensis (Tree Fern).

  • The resort has adopted a policy initiative that there will be limited use of Loudspeakers and External sounds after late evenings to facilitate animal and bird movement.

Green Cover initiatives

  • Club Mahindra, Madikeri planted over 2500 Plants as part of the Mahindra Hariyali project.

  • Vegetables & Fruits such as Tomato, Brinjal, Chillis, Radish, Ladies finger, Turnip, Cauliflower, Jack Fruit, Banana, Avocado, etc., are grown and used in-house for the cafeteria.

Tree Cover

The road ahead

Enriching biodiversity at Madikeri is just the beginning of a longer journey ahead for the Mahindra group, for the cause of bio-diversity. Identification of more water catchment areas and increased conservation of native and endemic species of flora are amongst our way forward initiatives. As we cherish and protect the diverse life forms at Club Mahindra, Madikeri we safeguard not just a local treasure but own a global responsibility for the well-being of our planet. Carbon neutrality by 2040 is our goal.

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