Eco-Friendly Practices
Nicki Noble Bean
  • Eco-Friendly Practices
  • We Compost It! - An Environmental Initiative
  • The Nonantum Resort is located right on the water in Kennebunkport, Maine – just a half mile from Dock Square, and an easy scenic stroll or bike ride up Ocean Avenue to Walker’s Point, summer home of the Bushes. Situated on the Kennebunk River, with the breakwater and the ocean within view, the resort has its own lighthouse and an array of classic Adirondack chairs set out on its spacious back lawn – making it an idyllic coastal retreat. Built in 1883 by a local sea captain, and opened on July 4, 1884, the Nonantum kicks off its 132nd season of operation Read on...

Michael Matulick
  • Eco-Friendly Practices
  • Sustainability and an Ethical Supply Chain
  • We all accept that the manufacture and transport of any products to customers generates carbon and other greenhouse gases which is then released into the atmosphere – this, in turn, has most agreeing that it is the root cause for global warming and severe weather patterns. To reduce, and in some cases eliminate, our negative environmental impact as a business we decided to offset our greenhouse gas emissions (i.e. our carbon footprint) by financially supporting various carbon reduction projects around the world through purchasing carbon offsets. Business has a fundamental duty and obligation to act in a way that reduces its environmental impact. Read on...

Kjell Mitchell
  • Eco-Friendly Practices
  • Long-Term Investment in Sustainable Tourism Practices
  • Glenwood Hot Springs has been an environmental trailblazer since long before terms like “carbon footprint,” “eco-friendly” and “sustainability” became commonplace. It actively harnesses the geothermal energy of the mineral hot springs for snowmelt and to heat domestic water supplies. The Glenwood Hot Springs Lodge was recognized with a TripAdvisor “Green Leaders” award in 2013 for its environmental practices. In addition to harnessing geothermal heat sources on-site, Glenwood Hot Springs has also adopted practices that include the use of state-of-the-art materials and energy-efficient technology that add up to not only dollars saved, but to a cleaner, healthier environment for visitors and the community. Read on...

Ranee Ruble-Dotts
  • Eco-Friendly Practices
  • Amid California's Drought, Hoteliers Supply a Stream of Innovative, Water-Saving Solutions
  • California’s unprecedented drought led to government mandates in 2015 requiring water agencies to cut residential and business water usage by 25 percent. For hotels, the mandates also include specific rules about irrigation, serving water only upon request, and encouraging reuse of guests’ towels and linens. While the mandates represent a starting point for water conservation, many California hotels are already ahead of the game: finding ways to reduce water consumption without compromising the guests’ experience. They have produced a steady stream of water-saving ideas for hotel bathrooms, laundry, landscaping, and kitchens--all of which are transferable to hotels almost anywhere. Read on...

Jan Peter Bergkvist
  • Eco-Friendly Practices
  • Do Our Guests Really Care?
  • Businesses, including the hospitality sector, often argue that there’s no customer demand for sustainability, so they do not focus on grabbing opportunities to work strategically towards becoming part of the solution. Very few innovations have come from customer demand - on the contrary, innovation and the success that follows, is often thanks to daring leaders, those who can foresee the development of society and really take the lead; in short leaders who show leadership! Read on...

Taryn Holowka
  • Eco-Friendly Practices
  • LEED Certified Buildings: A Growing Presence in Hospitality
  • Think back to the last time you stayed in a hotel. Did you notice anything that seemed eco-friendly – maybe there were recycling bins located throughout the hotel, perhaps there was a towel reuse program or maybe you even saw solar panels on the roof? Fortunately, these scenarios are becoming more and more common as hotels and resorts are catching on to and embracing sustainability practices – practices that are not only in demand from their customers, but that are also reducing operating costs significantly. Read on...

Joseph Ricci
  • Eco-Friendly Practices
  • Fewer Chemicals Mean More Green and More Clean Hotel Linens
  • “Going green” has been as much a regulatory mandate as a moral responsibility for many businesses. The commercial laundry industry—and by extension the hospitality industry—has worked with the Environmental Protection Agency to meet one critical environmental goal: eliminating the pollutant NPE, once a common component of laundry detergent, from the laundry process. Eliminating and improving laundry chemicals has many environmental benefits, and taking action in favor of the environment can boost the reputation of a hotel. In this article, Joseph Ricci, head of the TRSA commercial laundry association, explains the implications for the hospitality industry. Read on...

Rauni  Kew
  • Eco-Friendly Practices
  • Electric Cars Are Coming to Hotels Near You - Are You Ready?
  • The transition from gas powered, combustion engine cars to electric vehicles (EV’s), and even hybrids, has been relatively slow. However, later this year, new models with lower price tags, sleeker styling and improved batteries with more range are expected. Couple EV improvements and expanding infra structure with looming emissions regulation, the transition from combustion engine to EV is positioned to accelerate in the near future. Read on...

Robert Allender
  • Eco-Friendly Practices
  • Heeding Albert Einstein
  • Despite decades of effort, hotels continue to use more energy than they actually need to fully achieve their business mission and at the same time fail to extract maximum value from the energy they buy and from the time and effort put into managing that energy use. This article suggests why this is so, and puts forward an approach informed by ideas from Albert Einstein himself. Taking AHLA advice in 1984 would have given the hotel industry 30 years of energy profits; now's the time to avoid a second miss. Read on...

Kevin Thomas Carter
  • Eco-Friendly Practices
  • Sustainability Partners
  • Guests want to know how they're contributing to sustainability, especially if it's already part of their lifestyle. Keeping guests informed about sustainable operations makes them feel involved in the efforts your property is making to have a low negative impact on the environment. Signage, tours of facilities, and online education encourage sustainable behaviors and help guests understand their contributions to your environmental mission. When guests are involved in your environmental efforts, they are better able to contribute to energy and fuel savings by turning off lights and regulating the thermostat, thus increasing your sustainability success. Read on...

Heather  Kolakowski
  • Eco-Friendly Practices
  • The Benefits and Challenges of Food Service Composting Programs
  • Environmental sustainability and the desire to reduce the amount of food wasted are top trends in today’s society. It has been reported that approximately one-third of hotel users consider the “green-ness” of potential service providers when making their purchasing decisions. Composting is one example of the types of “green” practices that customers such as these resonate with and when implemented into its operations can help to enhance the customers’ perceptions of the organization. The following will detail the benefits and challenges of composting and composting programs as well as provide guidance on how to implement one into your operation. Read on...

Zia Siddiqi
  • Eco-Friendly Practices
  • Taking a Step Toward a Greener Hotel
  • How important is sustainability in the hospitality industry? Two-thirds of travelers choose green hotels when booking, according to a recent TripAdvisor study. As the hospitality industry continues to experience healthy growth this year, now is the time for you to re-evaluate if your hotel is as green as it could be. Many hotels will begin to implement green initiatives by starting a linen reuse program or by switching to LED lighting to save energy. But many may not know that creating an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) program can also make for a greener hotel. Read on...

Bob Cerrone
  • Eco-Friendly Practices
  • Hotels Make Room for Water Savings
  • Water was once considered an endless resource in the U.S. As a commodity, it appeared to be both plentiful and inexpensive. But due to the lasting effects of climate change, parts of the country are experiencing higher temperatures and less rainfall, preventing fresh water reservoirs and basins from keeping up with the demand of personal and agricultural use.The state of California is in its fifth year of a devastating drought, it won’t be the only state to experience strained supply in the near future. It’s everyone’s responsibility, including hotel owners, to help combat the dwindling water supply before every state reaches critically low resources. Read on...

Ken Hutcheson
  • Eco-Friendly Practices
  • Preparing Your Hotel Landscaping for Spring
  • As temperatures start to warm up and thawing begins, many hoteliers across the country are thrilled to say goodbye to winter. In some regions, particularly in the Northeast and Midwest, this winter proved to be a hotelier’s worst nightmare. With above freezing temperatures and blizzard-like conditions, it was difficult for some guests to even travel to their destinations. Keeping entranceways, parking lots and sidewalks clean and safe was another challenge many hotel owners and managers faced this winter. Now that winter has officially come to an end, it’s time to prepare your landscapes for spring. Read on...

Joseph Ricci
  • Eco-Friendly Practices
  • Lessons in Water Conservation: A West Coast Perspective
  • The four-year drought in the western United States has caused businesses and the public to find new and innovate ways to conserve and reuse water. And despite the promise of eased drought conditions this winter, recent reports from California have the state’s snowpack at below-average levels, prompting state officials to call for additional and more restrictive water conservation efforts – a trend likely to be mirrored elsewhere. As a major consumer of water within the American business landscape, the hotel industry is both a large water user and a leading voice in the water conservation movement. In this article we’ll explore major steps taken by industry leaders as well as trends shaping the future of hotel water usage and conservation. Read on...

JANUARY: Mobile Technology: A Permanent Sense of Immediacy

Alastair Cush

A growing number of properties are implementing mobile access guest room locking systems and the apps that support them. Many chain standards mandate mobile access and independents are joining the trend. What few operators understand is that mobile access implementation has changed not only every aspect of hotel door locks but also many other areas of hospitality operations. More people are actively involved in the decision making process for hotel locks than before. Mobile access has integrated the lock process with numerous property and chain departments from sales to guest loyalty and brand marketing. The original purpose of improving guest door locks was exclusively loss prevention and security. Read on...

Jim Vandevender

Meeting data and technology have evolved considerably since the days of the bulky ,expensive mail ordered meeting planner guides and hotel catalogues. The ways in which hotels find and book groups is far different than the antiquated methods of not so long ago. As better technology surrounding meetings and events becomes available , hotels appetites for group business seems to also increase at a parallel pace making the need to keep the related technology evolving even more paramount. The companies that provide hotels with this meeting intelligence are continually developing new and more advanced methods of gathering this sought after data to keep up pace with the demand. Read on...

Dave Weinstein

As with so many industries, the smartphone has transformed how organizations interact with their customers. Look at the automotive industry, the airline industry, and of course, the hospitality industry. You start your car’s engine and set the climate control to the desired temperature, buy airline tickets and check-in on your flight and do the same with your hotel room, all from your phone. There is a slew of services that traditionally are offered by hotels via the “book” on the desk. The book is still there, but some hotels allow you to order via the television while others offer integrated tablets. Read on...

Kacey Butcher

Can you imagine your bank choosing not to provide a way to check account status and transactions outside of your monthly paper statement? Can you further imagine a popular franchise restaurant only having paper take-out menus? You would be forced to contemplate what other aspects internally within the organization would make doing business with them complicated and archaic. There you find your own personal underlying immediate expectation of baseline service and operational procedures, where a decision is often made instantly to move onto the next provider. A decision to choose another provider that seemingly knows how to service customers with the utmost up-to-date standards. Read on...

Coming Up In The February Online Hotel Business Review




Feature Focus
Social Media: Interacting with the Hotel Customer
Consider these astonishing numbers: 1.49 billion active monthly Facebook users. 1.1 billion active monthly YouTube users. 320 million active monthly Twitter users and nearly 400 million registered users on LinkedIn. 400 million active monthly Instagram users and 200 million active Google+ users. The power and reach of social media is an awesome force and it has transformed how hotels interact with their customers. In the past year, social media advertising spending increased 33.5% to nearly $24 billion dollars. Social networks are being utilized by hotels to reach more visitors, expand brand awareness, enhance brand reputation and to establish more direct and personal communication with their customers. Savvy hotel operators are adopting a comprehensive social media strategy, and there are several emerging trends to note. Video continues to be a powerful and influential element in social media marketing, with 70% of companies saying that it is their most effective marketing tool. Video generates a 62% higher engagement rate than photographs alone, and with new social sites like Meerkat and Periscope which offer live video streaming, those numbers will only increase. Sponsored content is another growing trend. Though advertorials have been around for decades, hotels are finding new ways to maximize the visibility of their content. Some are placing sponsored content on Facebook, or on influencer blogs. Another trend is the integration of a “Buy Now” button into social media websites. Customers will be able to make purchases without ever having to leave their favorite social sites. This development is a major convenience for customers and should also be an additional revenue source for hotels. The February Hotel Business Review will explore these issues and examine how some hotels are successfully integrating social media into their operations.