IF ever there was an apt illustration of how to run an environmentally-friendly business without compromising on quality, then it’s The Green House Hotel in Bournemouth.

The hotel has been awarded the highest gold level by the Green Tourism Business Scheme (GTBS) for its “outstanding performance as a sustainable tourism business”.

And it’s also customer-friendly too. As soon we walked through the doors of the grand Grade 2 listed Victorian Villa we were given a warm welcome by the excellent restaurant manager Katie and were soon sipping glasses of fine sparkling wine in the bar courtesy of a vineyard in Sussex!

Everything on the menu here is either English, organic or local where possible.

For nothing is over-looked when it comes to this luxury four-star hotel’s commitment to green practices, from the use of solar energy and vegetable ink-printed wallpaper to the use of induction heaters in the kitchen and recycled wood tables in the restaurant.

Even the table water comes from an on-site filtration system.

And although the hotel’s Green Room restaurant has barely been open a year, it is already winning critical acclaim. Andy Hilton, who was recently appointed as the new head chef, is acquiring an impressive reputation for his innovative and progressive style.

His main aim is to use fresh ingredients from suppliers within a 50-mile radius.

As well as a daily changing menu, the restaurant offers everything from hearty breakfasts to more refined dinners.

We were invited to try the tasting menu which at £45 for six courses is not just good value for money but also gives you an opportunity to sample a wide selection of dishes that you may never have tried or, in some cases, even heard of before.

One of the dishes on our tasting menu was Stornaway black pudding which I would usually always avoid but this was a revelation. It was just robust enough to enhance the sweet glaze on the chicken wing, but without overpowering it. Inspired!

I absolutely loved the Mrs Tees Wild Mushroom Espuma made with New Forest mushrooms and drizzled with curry oil.

This was so light and frothy it almost evaporated on the tongue. Our waitress revealed that chef runs an air compressor through it which is a novel idea and very effective.

Each dish was a work of art to look at and fortunately tasted as good as it looked too.

The very affable sommelier really knew his stuff and each course was expertly matched with a glass of wine.

(The wine list is succinct and well priced, focusing on organic, biodynamic wines.) Other highlights of this gastronomic adventure included trout from the River Kennet served with green cauliflower, seared flat iron steak cottage pie with roast parsnips, and wild halibut that had been slow-cooked and served with mashed purple potatoes which were absolutely delicious!

The whole menu was progressive and innovative with some wonderfully finely-tuned flavour combinations.

And the service was faultless too. All the staff are kitted out in smart uniforms with crisp white shirts.

The Fair Trade logo is embroidered on the sleeves of the blouses – yet another nod to the hotel’s green sensibilities. And we loved the attention to little details too such as the way the staff don a pair of white gloves when they are serving food at the table.

All in all it was a memorable night for all the right reasons – a fine dining experience with a difference which sets a new bench-mark for other hotels and restaurants in Bournemouth.

What’s more, without wanting to sound too worthy, it feels good to support a place with such impressive eco-friendly credentials too.