The Kimi Ora Eco Resort in New Zealand has installed a 40 kilowatt solar system, the largest of its kind in the region.
The Kaiteriteri-based resort installed the hillside-mounted solar system over a 256 square metre site behind the holiday establishment. The resort is set to generate around 59,000 kilowatt-hours per year, the equivalent of supplying enough electricity to meet the needs of eight homes.
Although the system is tied to the national power grid, Kimi Ora expects that the bulk of the power generated will be used onsite.
Kimi Ora manager Aaron Dunbar told the Nelson mail that the resort was being hit with power bills averaging around $5000 in the winter months. The $110,000 solar system is expected to pay for itself within 6 and a half years
The solar installation, performed by Nelson firm Current Generation, is the latest sustainable addition for the hotel which has incorporated initiatives such as composting and worm farm treatment for organic waste, grey water separation, energy efficient lighting and solar water heating.
Additionally, the eco resort has displayed their commitment to the environment through the planting of more than 2,200 trees, and the re-establishment of a nearby wetland. Kim Ora Eco Resort also holds a Qualmark Enviro Silver Award.