Dove Cottage Eco Home in St. John



Aurora Tower, a New York Vanderbilt descendant, designed and built her eco-home friendly home in St. John using sustainable materials, eco-conscience design; everything inside and out runs on sun and rain water. The home was finished in 2009 but Aurora puts allows others to enjoy this eco home by listing it for rent on Tower is a Brown University alum who majored in urban planning. After traveling to St. John for spring break, a different path beckoned, and she decided to relocate to the Virgin Islands and choose the Ivy League–alum road less traveled: Live in an eco-home on the ­island and study astrology.The eco home, named Dove Cottage, reflects a new wave of eco-luxury, where cool replaces conspicuous, and constructing an environmentally conscious house can suit our tastes and our principles.

Living on an island came with the challenge of sourcing green materials. ­Locally, Tower was able to find low-toxin paint, reclaimed window screens, organic-cotton curtains, and handmade wooden mirrors. “Everything I could get here, I did,” she says. But, as the famous amphibian’s saying goes, it’s not easy being green, and she had to make ­compromises. The bulk of Tower’s earth-friendly supplies—from the travertine tiles and recycled-paper kitchen counters to the Restoration Hardware sustainable patio furniture, Roberta Roller Rabbit textiles, and natural latex mattresses—would have to be shipped in from the mainland. To limit her carbon footprint, she rented a shipping con­tainer the size of a small house and addressed 30 or so online orders to a warehouse in Florida to make the voyage to St. John and ­arrive, one month later, on her doorstep.

via Elle