Honors Theses and Capstones

Date of Award

Fall 2011

Project Type

Senior Honors Thesis

College or School



Hospitality Management

Program or Major

Hospitality Management

First Advisor

Udo Schlentrich


The objective of this research is to investigate best practice initiatives of sustainability involved in the successful development and management of Hamanasi Resort, an award winning eco-tourism resort located in Belize. The four phases of research at Hamanasi as originally proposed, found in Part I of the thesis, are outlined as follows: Phase one includes hands-on research through shadowing in different hotel departments, observation of management practices in Hamanasi, interviews conducted with employees, and questionnaires administered to guests; Phase two begins a study of the business and organizational model of Hamanasi along with an examination of the critical issues encountered during the start-up phases; Phase three is a SWOT analysis of Hamanasi and a market analysis of other properties that compete with the eco-resort; Phase four investigates eco-tourism promotions and policies in Belize and Hamanasi, and examines the different eco-certification practices. Part II of the thesis reports on the findings of this research with an emphasis placed on important findings.