MUSANDAM, OMAN—Six Senses Zighy Bay is in the kitchen with its sleeves rolled up and intentions set—healthy guts inside and healthy land outside. What’s cooking is always mindfully sourced and deliciously prepared with nothing wasted. Out with the palm oil, processed food and plastic. In with the planet. Guests enjoy delicious menus during their stay and learn simple ways they can adopt healthier habits at home.
Eat, Drink and Be Healthy—Eat With Six Senses, the brand’s philosophy and approach to food and drink, is based on guiding principles of local and sustainable sourcing, natural ingredients and a less is more approach. Each Six Senses property grows produce on site for farm to fork dining, and sources the most sustainable ingredients through its relationships with local farmers, producers and suppliers.
Finding Alternatives for Soy and Palm Oil Products—Palm oil and soy plantations are responsible for deforestation in many countries around the world, with impacts on climate, environment and biodiversity. The quality of soy is also a concern as most soy is genetically modified. Ethical sourcing is important to Six Senses which is why its purchasing teams carefully curate the most sustainable products whenever possible.
Saying No to Processed Food—The culinary team at Six Senses Zighy Bay believes that fresh is best—that’s why they take a simpler approach to preparation, focusing on quality, balance and whole food made from scratch. They avoid processed foods, additives (e.g., flavor enhancers, fake colors, flavors, preservatives) and offer a range of options free from common food allergens such as dairy and gluten.
Produce doesn’t come much fresher than veggies grown in the resort’s organic garden or farm. Different flavored ice creams, cheese, milk, jams and condiments are just some examples of items produced directly on site. Breakfast wouldn’t be breakfast without camels’ milk.
Banning Processed Food—Six Senses Zighy Bay’s culinary team actively chooses to not buy food items that are processed or contain MSG (Monosodium Glutamate). The resort has therefore replaced several types of umami products with seaweed and equivalent ingredients. The team also cook all their food from scratch, maintaining the quality of the food served to guests and staff alike and ensure the freshest servings. The resort grows its own produce and uses the products of animals in their farm in their menu, by making their own ice cream, cheeses, milk, fruits, vegetables, micro-herbs, jams and condiments.
The Six Senses Zighy Bay team works with neighboring schools to engage children in the importance of sustainable farming, local and seasonal produce and healthier eating choices.
Zero Waste—Six Senses has a philosophy of Zero Waste, which entails upcycling materials for innovative reuses as well as producing materials on site to reduce transportation-related impacts. For example, Six Senses Zighy Bay repurposes materials for use in spa and room amenities, while landscaping waste is fed to milk-producing goats. Spent glass bottles are transformed into decorations, ornaments and jewelry, and food waste is composted and used to fuel the organic garden.
Eliminating Plastic—Ongoing efforts are being made to reduce and where possible refuse the intake of plastic products or packaging. Single-use plastic that enters the resort is biodegradable, although plastic straws and bottles have already been replaced with sustainable alternatives. Guests are provided with reusable shopping bags and water bottles to use during their stay. Six Senses Zighy Bay team also carries out beach and ocean cleanup campaigns.
Bottling Water On Site—The resort produces high quality drinking water in its reverse osmosis water plant and bottles it in glass. This is not only eco-friendly but also body-friendly as eradicating microplastics ensures the absolute best water quality. Waste water is treated with zero discharge, while graywater is recycled and used for irrigation around the resort.
Green Fingers—The resort’s permaculturist has taken on a major soil remediation project to revitalize the soil in the desert around the Dibba farm and the organic garden in the bay. With the help of their new composting machine, the team has eliminated all the organic waste produced by the resort, which made up 76 percent of the total waste produced. This is now converted entirely into compost every day and added to the soil with charcoal.
Earth Day—For the last three years, the resort has continued to involve hosts, villagers and guests in tree planting to make Zighy Bay, as well as the nearby township of Dibba, a green landscape. On Earth Day, 20 trees were planted in the organic garden and 10 more in the green patch with guests pitching in to help. Local villagers were also encouraged to plant 10 trees in the neighboring fishing village.
Earth Lab—Guests are invited to learn and engage in all things natural through Earth Lab. There, the resort showcases its sustainability efforts to reduce its consumption, produce locally and support communities and ecosystems. It also serves as a place to communicate the work happening on and off site.
And it’s not just about observing but experiencing. Everyone is welcome to join Earth Lab workshops and learn how to make their own fertile soil at home as well as reclaim their own seeds for planting out back home.