To offer your guests a more environmentally responsible night’s sleep, here are some eco-friendly measures to consider for your hotel that go above and beyond a towel and sheet re-use program. There are options that need little investment and those that require more, but ‘going green’ can ultimately save energy and water, creating more cost efficiencies in the long run.
Waste: A simple set of initiatives lies in your hotel’s waste disposal processes. Try composting food waste, placing recycling bins in rooms or installing refillable hair/skin care dispensers, rather than individually wrapped products that are used once and thrown away. Each of these actions will divert waste from landfills and cut hauling costs—hotels can also gain small amounts of revenue for recycling items like aluminum cans.
Cleaning: An easy way to be more eco-conscious is to adopt a cleaning program using natural products. Choose products like Green Works Concentrates that are certified by respected third-party agencies such as Green Seal and the U.S. EPA’s Design for the Environment. One reason this is important is that many manufacturers make misleading claims about their products being naturally derived or environmentally preferable, whereas certified ones can be trusted to meet a high standard. By using certified products, hotels can gain points toward Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification.
Greener Operations: Use recyclable paper in offices or save money by emailing customer invoices rather than printing them. For a more involved scheme, try installing low-flow showerheads and toilets or install compact fluorescent lighting triggered by sensors to reduce electricity use. Many hotels now offer key card access where guests must insert their key into a slot once inside their room to turn on the power—this will ensure lights, air conditioning and TVs are not left on when not in use.
High-end Eco-amenities: Look for organic or natural materials when making facility upgrades or installations. Replace old washing machines with both water and energy conserving models. Install solar-powered energy to heat water and pools. Offer guests bicycles, walking maps, and information on public transportation encouraging them to adopt eco-practices.
Sue Kramer is the marketing manager of Green Works Concentrates, a line of commercial cleaning products by The Clorox Company.