Matanivusi Does it Again

by | Mar 28, 2016 | Surf Travel, Travel Stories

Matanivusi Surf Resort in Fiji, the world’s first surf resort to be certified as sustainable by STOKE Certified in 2014, is now the first to be re-certified for their continued efforts in sustainability management, environmental conservation, and community development.

In January 2016, Matanivusi was evaluated by an independent evaluator, Sam Sproal of Refraction Sustainability, against the STOKE Surf standard where they increased their compliance score from 84% to 86%. Not only did Matanivusi improve upon their previous initiatives, the boutique surf resort also made great strides in new environmental and socio-economic projects over the last two years.


Transitioning to clean energy was a main priority for the resort owners so they installed 120 rooftop solar panels in February 2015, along with a battery storage bank to supply the resort and neighboring homes with renewable energy long after the sun sets. The large diesel generator that used to power the resort was replaced with a small backup diesel generator for when there is not enough solar power stored in the batteries. These efforts reduced Matanivusi’s annual CO2 emissions by 69% and save the resort nearly $60,000 per year.

Donna McDonald, Co-Owner of Matanivusi, stated “We were honored to be the first certified surf resort and now we’re STOKEd to be the first one to get recertified! Our sustainability management system has really matured over the last two years thanks to STOKE Certified’s guidelines and we are starting to see tangible results in the community, the environment, and our bottom line. Plus, the guests love our new sustainability tour!”

In addition, Matanivusi Surf Resort established the Vunaniu Surf Club (VSC) in early 2015 to provide surf instruction, lifeguard training, and sustainability education for youth in the neighboring village of Vunaniu. The local kids get stoked on surfing while participating in beach cleanups, yoga classes, and environmental programs such as Matanivusi’s coral reef restoration project. Small pieces of coral are attached to cement discs on a rack and submerged in the ocean to grow. After a year, some of the coral can be harvested to repeat the process while the rest are permanently attached to damaged sections of the reef to revive the local coral population.


“We are honored to see our first certified member continue to improve, year after year, as they strive towards achieving the highest level of certification—Best Practice,” said Co-Founder of STOKE Certified, Carl Kish. “Our vision for the certification program was to inspire the constant evolution of sustainability practices and Matanivusi exemplifies that consistent progress. We’re so proud of how far they’ve come and we’re excited to see where they’ll go from here.”

Visit the Mantanivusi Surf Resort page to see more details and book your trip.

About STOKE Certified:

Founded by Carl Kish and Dr. Jess Ponting, STOKE (Sustainable Tourism Operator’s Kit for Evaluation) Certified is the world’s first sustainability certification program specific to surf and ski tourism. In addition to verifying the legitimacy of sustainability claims by operators and providing transparency for the public through its certification program, STOKE offers additional services for operators to enhance their sustainability management system including consulting, marketing, and project management services. STOKE has member properties in Fiji’s Mamanuca Islands and the Coral Coast, the Mentawai Islands, Costa Rica, Liberia, Panama, Baja California, the Telo Islands, the Philippines, and Hawaii. For more information, go to