Eco-Friendly Practices
Patricia  Griffin
  • Eco-Friendly Practices
  • Recycling Textiles
  • I attended the “Re-Think Waste” Massachusetts recycling meeting, and was absolutely blown away by a session on textile recycling. I’m sharing with you what I learned, and hope you too will consider making textile recycling as important as we all make paper, aluminum, plastic and glass recycling. Fleece, flannel, corduroy, cotton, nylon, denim, wool and linen. What can you do with these fibers when you’re finished wearing them, sleeping on them or draping them over your windows? One way to benefit both your community and the environment is to donate used textiles to charitable organizations. Most recovered household textiles end up at these organizations. Read on...

Andrea Pinabell
  • Eco-Friendly Practices
  • Expanded Sustainable Seafood Programming Has a Far-Reaching Impact
  • Every day, each of us make what seem like routine decisions that actually have a profound impact on our planet. Among these decisions are our choices in food and beverages – specifically seafood – which have much farther reaching implications than one might imagine. The kinds of seafood we select affect the health and diversification of rivers and oceans as well as the economic well-being of fishermen and their families, especially in remote resort areas, creating a ripple effect on our human health, river, reef and ocean ecosystems, our communities, our local economies and our business. Read on...

Gaynor Reid
  • Eco-Friendly Practices
  • Are Guests Looking for Sustainable Hotels?
  • Do you change your bath towels and bed linen every day at home? Most people don’t. Today, it has also become normal for guests to reuse them for two to three days when staying at a hotel. More than half of guests are in favour of reusing their towels, especially if some of the money saved in doing so is reinvested in planting trees for the benefit of the local community. This is according to a survey carried out by AccorHotels aimed at measuring changes in guest habits, current awareness of sustainability issues and their expectations of hotels in terms of sustainable development. Read on...

Lawrence Adams
  • Eco-Friendly Practices
  • Sustainable Practices of Major Hotel Companies
  • Major hotel companies realize the enormous benefits that come with environmental and socially sustainable practices. In addition to increasing profits from energy and water conservation, hotels are boosting profits due to an expanding segment of environmentally-concerned travelers and corporations, who make lodging choices based on hotels’ green credentials. As they embrace environmental and social sustainability, many of the major hotel companies have mission statements expounding on their environmental stewardship. In this article, we will look at five major hospitality companies and their approaches, practices and policies in achieving sustainable goals for their hotels and resorts. Read on...

Faith Taylor
  • Eco-Friendly Practices
  • How to Drive Leadership in Carbon Reduction and Reporting
  • Good business is about seeking out opportunities to create value. As our social, economic and environmental landscapes continue to change, we need approaches to adapt and evolve our business practices in order to manage risk and create market value in new ways. Increasingly, consumers are looking for companies that are socially responsible, and ones which understand that there is a need to give back to their communities. In addition, there is an increase in the focus and attention to sustainable operating practices from investors, guests, partners, and employees. People are looking to do business with companies that understand their global footprint Read on...

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...

MAY: Eco-Friendly Practices: The Value of Sustainability

Eric Ricaurte

In 2011, we visited the 10 hotels contracted in the room block for the Greenbuild conference in Toronto. As part of their award-winning sustainable event program, the conference organizers embedded green practices into the contract language for these hotels, who either had to comply with the requirements, explain their reason why they couldn’t implement them, or pay a $1,000 fine. Part of our consulting work was to gather the data and confirm some of the practices on-site. Read on...

Susan Tinnish

Hotels brands have actively engaged in large-scale efforts to become more environmentally friendly. Individual hotels have made great strides on property. Many significant large-scale eco-initiatives s are most easily built initially into the infrastructure and design of the building and surrounding areas. Given that the adaptation of these large-scale changes into the existing asset base is expensive and disruptive, hotels seek different ways to demonstrate their commitment to sustainability and eco-friendly practices. One way to do so is to shift the focus from large-scale change to “small wins.” Small wins can help a hotel create a culture of sustainability. Read on...

Shannon Sentman

Utility costs are the second largest operating expense for most hotels. Successfully reducing these expenses can be a huge value-add strategy for executives. Doing this effectively requires more than just a one-time investment in efficiency upgrades. It requires ongoing visibility into a building’s performance and effectively leveraging this visibility to take action. Too often, efficiency strategies center on a one-time effort to identify opportunities with little consideration for establishing ongoing practices to better manage a building’s performance ongoing. Read on...

Joshua Zinder, AIA

Discussions of sustainability in the hospitality industry have focused mainly on strategies at the level of energy-efficient and eco-friendly adjustments to operations and maintenance. These "tweaks" can include programs to reduce water usage, updating lighting to LEDs, campaigns to increase guest participation in recycling, and similar innovative industry initiatives. Often overlooked—not only by industry experts but even by hotel operators and designers—are possibilities for hotel design and construction that can make a property truly sustainable from the get-go. Read on...

Coming Up In The June Online Hotel Business Review




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Feature Focus
Sales & Marketing: Who Owns the Guest?
Hotels and OTAs are, by necessity, joined at the hip and locked in a symbiotic relationship that is uneasy at best. Hotels require the marketing presence that OTAs offer and of course, OTAs guest’s email when it sends guest information to a hotel, effectively allowing OTAs to maintain “ownership” of the guest. Without ready access to guest need hotel product to offer their online customers. But recently, several OTAs have decided to no longer share a data, hotels are severely constrained from marketing directly to a guest which allows them to capture repeat business – the lowest cost and highest value travelers. Hotels also require this data to effectively market to previous guests, so ownership of this data will be a significant factor as hotels and OTAs move forward. Another issue is the increasing shift to mobile travel bookings. Mobile will account for more than half of all online travel bookings next year, and 78.6% of them will use their smartphone to make those reservations. As a result, hotels must have a robust mobile marketing plan in place, which means responsive design, one-click booking, and location technology. Another important mobile marketing element is a “Click-to-Call” feature. According to a recent Google survey, 68% of hotel guests report that it is extremely/very important to be able to call a hotel during the purchase phase, and 58% are very likely to call a hotel if the capability is available in a smartphone search. The June Hotel Business Review will report on some of these issues and strategies, and examine how some sales and marketing professionals are integrating them into their operations.