On March 29, hotels around the world will support Earth Hour, a global event organized by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) to raise awareness about climate change. Here are just a few examples of properties that are honoring the occasion:
For the fourth consecutive year, Hilton Worldwide hotels around the world will support Earth Hour. This year, hundreds of Hilton Worldwide’s more than 4,000 hotels and timeshare properties will once again be switching off lights, as well as organizing a number of innovative projects for guests in demonstration of their commitment to live sustainably and take action by caring for the planet in the year ahead. Some of the planned events around the world include: switching off main building exterior lighting and rooftop neon signage; dimming interior lobby and reception lighting; hosting candlelit dinners with low carbon menus and sustainable cocktails; and showcasing acoustic music sessions including classical music and jazz in the dark.
“As the travel and tourism industry continues to expand around the world, Hilton Worldwide increasingly seeks ways to reduce energy consumption while delivering great guest experiences,” said Maxime Verstraete, vice president, sustainability, Hilton Worldwide. “Through the switching off of lights and a range of other activities to engage our guests, our participation in Earth Hour is a unique opportunity for the Hilton Worldwide portfolio of brands to bring our Living Sustainably commitment to life.”
Langham Place, Fifth Avenue will go dark from 8:30 to 9:30 p.m. and serve a special a special menu comprised of dishes inspired by the five elements (earth, water, wood, fire, and metal) accompanied by environmentally-thoughtful, organic cocktails. The menu itself will be printed on recycled paper. The lounge’s signature nightly jazz performances will continue by candle light (all the lights in the hotel will be replaced with soy candles) and the hotel’s house car will be replaced for the day by a custom pedi-cab from Revolution Rickshaws.
For the seventh consecutive year, The Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn and Spa will participate in Earth Hour by turning numerous (non-essential) lights off for one hour. Guests will be swooned by the lobby fireplace and twinkling candles. The resort’s new lounge, 38◦ North, will be highlighting sustainable, organic, and biodynamic wines, while the property’s Michelin award- winning dining room, Santé, will serve an inspired menu that showcases the region’s abundant local products and world-famous wines.
“Earth Hour is a unique opportunity for Fairmont colleagues and guests to participate in the world’s largest global climate change initiative,” said Rick Corcoran, general manager. “Our participation furthers our ongoing support of environmental awareness and demonstrates the hotels’ ongoing energy conservation stewardship.”
Sheraton Phoenix Downtown Hotel and The Westin Phoenix Downtown will activate a range of energy-saving measures during Earth Hour such as dimming or turning off non-essential lights and reducing or turning off HVAC and refrigeration. Additionally, each hotel restaurant will participate by highlighting a specialty cocktail that day.
Earth Hour began in 2007 as a way for individuals and businesses to show how simple steps can make a significant impact on addressing climate change. This worldwide effort began in Sydney, Australia, when more than 2 million people turned off their lights for an hour and reduced the city’s energy consumption by more than 10 percent. It became a global movement in 2008 with more than 50 million people participating, and today it is the largest grassroots environmental movement in the world with more than 7,000 cities and towns in 152 countries and territories and hundreds of millions of people participating across seven continents. In 2013 alone, 345 million people were reached through the campaign’s website and social media.