Posts Tagged :

Eco

New research suggests that hotels are not doing enough to be eco-friendly

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
New research suggests that hotels are not doing enough to be eco-friendly

New research published by the Independent Hotel Show London has revealed that 76 per cent of holidaymakers feel as if hotels could do more to be greener and become more eco-friendly. Editor Hamish Kilburn took to stage to present the findings and writes… 

I am sick to death of hotels – large and small, chains as well as independents – doing the bare minimum in order to claim that they have become more sustainable. Yesterday, I took my frustration over the ‘greenwashing effect’, which so many businesses are guilty of, to the stage at the Independent Hotel Show London to deliver the Conscious Bedroom Report. And here are some of the new stats that have emerged.

Times are changing, and hotels – like all other businesses and sectors worldwide – need to change with them. A report by the conscious bank Iriodos reported that in 2017, UK consumers spent an estimated £83.33 billion on ethical goods and services. And given the recent developments in climate change awareness, that number has increased drastically. While 76 per cent of consumers who were surveyed believe that hotels could do more to become greener, a whopping 72 per cent hoped hotels could also provide local produce.

Question: Are you more likely to book a room if a hotel has a clear sustainability policy? Would your preference change if you were given an incentive? Of the 2,000 individuals who were polled in the survey (64 per cent female and 36 per cent male), the answers to these particular questions were divided. While 57 per cent responded in the affirmative, 43 per cent were not converted by sustainability policies in and of themselves. Furthermore, this plunged to just 16 per cent once an incentive of some sort was involved. When asked why, however, many responded that protecting the environment itself was a strong enough incentive.

It seems, more recently, that sustainability has gone on tour to become a global concern and conversation and not one that is restricted to regional areas. 14 per cent of consumers surveyed admitted to being more aware of their environmental impact when away from home. Interestingly on the flip side, the same number that they believed to be less mindful. 72 per cent, though, managed to keep their beliefs consistent when both travelling and when at home.

“62 per cent of respondents admitted to feeling frustrated by single-use plastics in their room.”

The report also stated that “180 million plastic cotton buds are flushed down the toilet every year in Britain.” For many, and certainly myself after reading that statistic, it is unfathomable for hotels to still be providing guests checking in with single-use plastics. 62 per cent of respondents admitted to feeling frustrated by single-use plastics in their room. 26 per cent claimed not to be bothered and 12 per cent argued that they didn’t notice whether or not single-use plastics were in a hotel room during their stay. Whats more, plastic cotton buds, drink stirrers and straws will be banned in England from April 2020.

“73 per cent of guests asked did not consider a hotel to look ‘budget’ by using large dispensers.”

From recent discussions I have had with hoteliers on how to activate sustainable change without diluting the quality of service, there is a concern that replacing miniatures in the bathrooms with large dispensable bottles will look like a hotel is scrimping. However, 73 per cent of guests asked did not consider a hotel to look ‘budget’ by using large dispensers. If you needed further reassurance, a large proportion of the top luxury hotels in London have replaced bathroom miniatures with large dispensers and are, as a result, feeding back to the editorial desk at Hotel Designs zero complaints. “We ensure that the product remains high quality,” one hotelier said. “And in order to illuminate the opportunity for guests to complain, we ensure that each bottle is always topped up.”

“78 per cent of those surveyed embraced the rag ‘n’ bone revolution.”

The report also examined the design element of a hotel guests’ experience. 78 per cent of those surveyed embraced the rag ‘n’ bone revolution. 22 per cent maintained to feel ambivalent at the thought of restored furniture. In regards to art, which is further being taken outside the frame in hotel design with new innovative design scenes coming into vision, seeing locally sourced pieces around a hotel is becoming more of a demand among travellers. 61 per cent of guests said that they did appreciate the use of indigenous arts and crafts, and only six per cent were non-plussed.

The Conscious Bedroom Report is a step in the right direction. Although positive to see that consumer demands are very much in line with ensuring that the international hotel design scene becomes more conscious both socially and environmentally, it also exposes an industry that is behind many to become sustainably driven.

“In short, the value of becoming a more conscious hotel operator, designer and architect far out weighs the cost.”

EDITOR’S COMMENT: “Never before has it been more transparent than it is now to see hotels either choosing not to embrace and adopt new eco initiatives or doing the bare minimum and greenwashing. I believe that in order to really make an impact on the international hotel design scene, examples need to be set. Examples like Heckfield Place, The Langham London and Inhabit London. All of which, interestingly, are sheltered in grade-listed buildings. The excuses are fading.

“By the industry creatively thinking about how they can add sustainability into their core values, hotels and hotel designers will naturally open themselves up to local suppliers, businesses and communities that surround them. In short, the value of becoming a more conscious hotel operator, designer and architect far out weighs the cost. We have an opportunity to make a real change and the statistics in the Conscious Bedroom Report just highlight further the changing demands of modern travellers.” – Hamish Kilburn, editor, Hotel Designs

The seven-page report was unveiled in an exclusive panel discussion, hosted by Kilburn. He was joined by Alex Harris, the creative director for Harris + Harris London; Olivia Richli, the general manager for Heckfield Place; Sue Williams, the general manager for Whatley Manor and Xenia Zu Hohenlohe, the managing director of Considerate Group.

The Independent Hotel Show London continues…

Next month, Hotel Designs will be putting sustainability under the spotlight. If you have a story for the team, please email h.kilburn@forumevents.co.uk

Main image credit: Inhabit London

 

Marriott International to eliminate single-use shower toiletry bottles

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Marriott International to eliminate single-use shower toiletry bottles

By December 2020, the hotel group will introduce new, large amenity bottles to reduce plastic waste…

Following on from IHG’s big announcement last month to ban miniatures, Marriott International is the latest hotel group to announce a change in policy when it comes to bathroom amenities, with the company announcing that it will replace single-use toiletry bottles of shampoo, conditioner and bath gel in guestroom showers with larger, pump-topped bottles.

To date, the company has already rolled out larger bottles at about 1,000 properties in North America, and now expects most of its other hotels to make the switch by December 2020. When fully implemented across the globe, Marriott International’s expanded toiletry program is expected to prevent around 500 million tiny bottles annually from going to landfills; that’s about 1.7 million pounds of plastic, a 30 per cent annual reduction from current amenity plastic usage.

“This is our second global initiative aimed at reducing single-use plastics in just over a year, which underscores how important we believe it is to continuously find ways to reduce our hotels’ environmental impact. It’s a huge priority for us,” said Arne Sorenson, President and Chief Executive Officer of Marriott International. “Our guests are looking to us to make changes that will create a meaningful difference for the environment while not sacrificing the quality service and experience they expect from our hotels.”

“The group first began replacing single-use toiletry bottles in the guest bathrooms of about 450 select-service hotels with larger toiletry bottles that contain more product in January 2018.”

Already, more than 20 per cent of Marriott International’s more than 7,000 properties now offer larger-pump-topped bottles in guestroom showers, doing away with single-use bottles that often end up in landfills.

A typical large, pump-topped bottle contains the same amount of product as about 10 to 12 miniature, single-use bottles. Because miniature bottles are not usually recycled, they end up in the hotels’ trash bins – generating refuse that will never truly decompose in landfills. In addition to allowing guests to use as much of a product as they need, the larger bottles are also recyclable along with other basic containers, such as plastic soda bottles.

Marriott International first began replacing single-use toiletry bottles in the guest bathrooms of about 450 select-service hotels with larger toiletry bottles that contain more product in January 2018. Today, the estimated 1,000 hotels that have made the switch overwhelmingly report positive feedback from guests. Each brand will implement the larger amenity bottles in a way that is consistent with the brand experience and quality standards that Marriott International’s guests have come to expect. The company is already working on ways to reduce single-use items elsewhere in the guestroom.

This initiative furthers Marriott International’s commitment to reducing its environmental impact as part of its Serve 360: Doing Good in Every Direction platform that addresses social and environmental issues. As part of Serve 360, Marriott International is working toward several sustainability goals such as reducing landfill waste by 45 per cent and responsibly sourcing its top 10 product purchase categories – including guestroom amenities – by 2025.

The global shower amenities initiative comes 13 months after the company’s first global plastics-reduction initiative, which addressed disposable plastic straws. In July 2018, the company’s hotels across the portfolio began phasing out disposable plastic straws and stirrers and switching to an on-demand approach with alternative products wherever possible. As of last month, the company had met its goal, resulting in an estimated annual diversion of 1 billion plastic straws from landfills – a first step on its journey to further reduce the portfolio’s reliance on single-use plastics and other disposables.

The latest announcement expands Marriott International’s early 2018 initiative to switch single-use shower toiletry bottles to larger bottles with pump dispensers in five brands: Courtyard by Marriott, SpringHill Suites, Residence Inn, Fairfield by Marriott and TownePlace Suites. In addition, four of Marriott International’s brands – Aloft Hotels, Element by Westin, Four Points and Moxy Hotels – previously implemented the pump-dispenser toiletry concept, while a fifth – AC by Marriott – is also preparing to make the change.

Main image credit: Marriott International

EXCLUSIVE: Pre-show interview with designer of The Conscious Bedroom

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
EXCLUSIVE: Pre-show interview with designer of The Conscious Bedroom

The Founder and Creative Director of Harris & Harris London, Alex Harris, gives Hotel Designs‘ editor, Hamish Kilburn, a sneak peek of The Conscious Bedroom that he and his team are designing for The Independent Hotel Show London 2019… 

It was at the beginning of 2019 when Harris & Harris, the London based multidisciplinary design studio, were first approached by the organisers of Independent Hotel Show to work on this year’s concept room set.

The brief was simple (and came in after the show had viewed the studio’s interior design portfolio online): to design The Conscious Hotel Room for the Independent Hotel Show 2019. The design studio leaped at the opportunity to design the concept room. “It was a seamless fit for the studio and their ethos of looking at the most environmentally and socially conscious way of producing luxury interiors and products,” Alex Harris, the studio’s Founder and Creative Director, explains. Arguably most importantly, though, the space at the show would give Harris & Harris the opportunity to showcase this mentality through the design and curation of brand partners who have similar ethics.

When designing the skeleton of the room, Harris was keen to explore creating a heritage feel. “We wanted it to feel as if the room was located within a historic building instead of a new build,” he explains. “This was to prove that sustainable design practices can also be applied to older buildings, which are more prominent in the UK. This was achieved through introducing Georgian style wall panelling throughout the bedroom and including some historic design references in the interior design but with a modern twist.” 

Parallel to curating sustainable focussed products and brands in the concept room – including factoring in elements like using local suppliers to reduce milage – the studio was also focussed on ensuring the overall design felt fresh, inviting and luxurious, all of which could be achieved whilst minimising the impact on the environment.

Ahead of the official unveiling of the finished room on October 15, we caught up with Harris to understand more about the concept and his drive to design with purpose.

Hamish Kilburn: What sparked your passion for sustainability, both at university and beyond?
Alex Harris: I had the opportunity to gain work experience in 2005, prior to graduating from Bournemouth University, with the award winning furniture designer Russell Pinch (we grew up in the same tiny village in Gloucestershire). One day we traveled down to Benchmark Furniture in Berkshire as Russell was working on a new collection with them and I had the chance to see Benchmark’s incredible workshops, showroom and design office.

They are very focused on sustainability throughout their manufacturing process and the products themselves. Together with their passion for craftsmanship, this definitely resonated with me as a student and I knew that my final year project must represent this ethos that I witnessed with Pinch and Benchmark’s work.

I designed a (fully functioning) wooden wind-up LED lamp for my final year project, which I won an award for sustainability from my university. At the same time I approached the eco-design collective [RE] Design and had the opportunity to exhibit my lamp with them at the London Design Festival in 2006. Then in 2009 (after a stint living and working in Melbourne, Australia) I joined the Benchmark design team, four years after I had previously visited with Russell Pinch, so I had come full circle!

I then went to work for several interior designers in London who were focussed on luxury and not really concerned about sustainability, which was always difficult for me. I vowed that whenever I start my own design studio that we must bring together both ‘luxury’ and ‘sustainability’  to prove that they can work harmoniously.

HK: How will your concept The Conscious Hotel Room showcase environmental and social factors?
AH: We have thought about the design in terms of impact on the environment from floor to ceiling. It was very important to us that every element was considered, so we researched and approached companies that we knew could help us with this vision.

So we have organic and natural wool and linen fabrics, FSC certified timber flooring from Domus, bespoke 100 per cent recycled cardboard and plastic joinery pieces, many products that are made in the UK (to reduce ‘mileage’) such as our Harris & Harris furniture & lighting and the beautifully natural bed from Naturalmat, 100 per cent wool carpets from Axminster with their recycled car-tyres underlay (both also made in the UK). Handmade natural terracotta tiles, also from Domus, feature in the bathroom with Crosswater WC, basin mixers and showers with low water use. Edward Bulmer paint features on the bedroom walls that only uses natural ingredients. We have a boiling and chilled water tap from Quooker together with reusable water bottles at the mini bar, omitting the need for a kettle (as you only use the exact boiling water you need for a cup of tea) and of course no need for single-use plastic water bottles. Even the artwork we have curated with the art consultants ARTIQ has been chosen to minimise impact on the environment, with artists that use recycled materials and natural materials & processes.

“Natural materials are used wherever possible but in particular with the Naturalmat bed and linens from The Fine Cotton Company.” – Alex Harris, Founder and Creative Director, Harris & Harris

The social factors that we have considered include making the space as wheelchair friendly as we can, with clear space around the bed, sofa, desk and bathroom vanity and a wide doorless opening into the bathroom with no change in floor level into the shower. Plants throughout provide better air quality and general well being. Natural materials are used wherever possible but in particular with the Naturalmat bed and linens from The Fine Cotton Company, to provide the best night’s sleep possible. Snacks and beverages will be sourced as locally as possible and that contain healthy ingredients.

HK: What are the challenges of creating a heritage feel from scratch?
AH: Our first approach was to introduce wall panelling and decorative mouldings throughout, this gave the feeling of a Georgian style property which also helped it feel warm, welcoming and luxurious. Materials, colours and patterns were also chosen to be simple and classic throughout and the furniture and joinery designs are pared back to give a timeless feel.

Image caption: Independent Hotel Show Conscious Hotel Room sketch

HK: What are the historic design references that are mentioned in the brief?
AH: As discussed above, the wall panelling and decorative mouldings, gave the feeling of a Georgian style interior. Our Harris & Harris furniture we have specified for the project; ‘Totterdown’ sofa, ‘Orchard’ Bench and ‘Clarke’ dining chair all have subtle references in their designs to 1920s/1930s Art Deco era and our Harris & Harris ‘Wharf’ lights (both table and pendants will be showcased) feature classic reeded glass. Cole & Son’s wallpaper ‘Flamingos’ that feature in the bathroom are a take on their archived designs from the 1960s as do the ‘Palm Jungle’ fabric on the scatter cushions. The herringbone pattern in the Axminster carpet is another classic design feature and the recycled cardboard tubing, used in the joinery and bed backdrop, gives a feeling of fluted columns that were used in Greek and Roman architecture.

“There are so many ways in which hotels can embrace the three ‘R’s (reduce, recycle and reuse).” – Alex Harris, Founder and Creative Director, Harris & Harris

HK: Can a hotel be 100 per cent fully sustainable?
AH: Unfortunately I don’t believe we as human beings can ever be 100 per cent fully sustainable unless we go back to living in a cave! We can all do our bit to help minimise our impact, but we all consume and we all produce waste. There are so many ways in which hotels can embrace the three ‘R’s (reduce, recycle and reuse) and we are excited to showcase just a selection of examples of how this can be employed in the design of The Conscious Hotel Bedroom which we hope will inspire hoteliers for their current and future projects.

HK: Let’s talk about water consumption. So many hotel groups are pledging to reduce their water consumption by ‘X’ amount.. Which suppliers would you say are allowing this to be a reality?
AH: We are working closely with the British bathroom brand Crosswater who are supplying The Conscious Hotel Bedroom with their M Pro range which have WRAS and TMV2 certification. The WC has two flush types to encourage water management and the mixer tap features a Neoperl aerator that has a flow rate of only five litres per minute.

When I lived in Australia we received an egg timer from the local water company to encourage showers of under four minutes. This was such simple idea and gave a fun challenge to try and ‘beat the clock’ whilst saving water. We will be featuring an egg timer in the bathroom of The Conscious Hotel Bedroom.

“There will be many UK produced products that will feature in The Conscious Hotel Bedroom and will be noted in our literature at the show.” – Alex Harris, Founder and Creative Director, Harris & Harris

HK: What is the value of products that have been manufactured in the UK?
AH: We have many great craftsmanship skills and traditions that are hard to find abroad. Harris & Harris are passionate about producing the UK whenever possible and keeping these skills alive. There will be many UK produced products that will feature in The Conscious Hotel Bedroom and will be noted in our literature at the show.

HK: What can designers do to ensure an eco-hotel is still a trendy and fresh hotel?
AH: I think there is no reason why an eco-hotel cannot not still be trendy and fresh. Curating the products and materials specifically for The Conscious Hotel Bedroom galvanised this idea for us. Many brands now offer products which have less impact on the environment but still look fab. It is up to the designer to track these down and encourage their client to use in place of products that could be damaging to the environment.

HK: Can you explain the benefits of Smile Plastics?
AH: Smile plastics have kindly donated their ‘Dapple’ plastic sheets to us for the joinery pieces at The Conscious Hotel Bedroom. Dapple is made from recycled chopping boards and plastic packaging and with all of their ranges, Smile Plastics are produced from waste which would otherwise end up in land fill. With Dapple we felt it had the look of a natural material such as marble, to give a touch of luxury, particularly important in the bathroom where it features on the vanity joinery. Dapple is hard, dense and rigid, 100 per cent waterproof, rot-proof and strong weather resistance. It is solid and consistent, allowing for a decorative edge. It is also UV resistance and is food-grade and can be used for preparation of wet foods.

Harris & Harris will showcase The Conscious Hotel Room at the Independent Hotel Show 2019. In addition to this, Harris will also join editor Hamish Kilburn on stage to discuss this year’s major topic in a live talk entitled The Conscious Bedroom Report, which takes place at 11:30am on October 15, 2019.

Brand Partners (as of August 2019)
ARTIQ– art consultants and rental agency, Axminster- carpets, Cole & Son– wallpaper and fabrics, Crosswater- bathroom items including shower, basin, toilet and tapsCurran Packaging– recycled cardboard tubing, Domus – bathroom floor and wall tiles, timber flooring, Edward Bulmer – paint, The Fine Cotton Company – towels, gowns, slippers and bed linens, Harris & Harris London– furniture and decorative lighting, Naturalmat – bed, mattress and bed linens, Plant Plan – plants and moss/living wall, Quooker – boiling, filtered & chilled water mixer tap, Samsung– television and soundbarSmile Plastics– recycled plastic sheet material, Wandsworth Group – power, lighting sockets and faceplates

PRODUCT WATCH: Wellness & wellbeing in the open air

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
PRODUCT WATCH: Wellness & wellbeing in the open air

As Hotel Designs focuses its lens on Hotel Concepts, editor Hamish Kilburn learns how Gessi is leading the way in launching innovative bathroom products inspired by nature and the great outdoors… 

Internal and external, closed and open, domestic and nature scale: ideally designers can eliminate all barriers with the Gessi Outdoor line in order to create a single grand dimension of physical and mental wellbeing. The free-standing shower columns of the Gessi Outdoor Wellness Sy- stem were specically conceived for outdoor spaces.

They offer innovative combinations of materials, nishes and treatments, with the goal of recreating the stylistic and functional pleasure of the Gessi Private Wellness System outdoors, for a private oasis of wellbeing or in public spaces such as spas and resorts.

The rened and discreet lines of the Gessi Outdoor Collections are naturally inserted into the landscape, creating a continuity and happy union between interior and exterior, a harmonious fusion with nature.

With an elegant, modern and discreet appearance, the Gessi G01 outdo- or shower gives spaces a re ned and contemporary style. Self-standing and created in stainless steel, this model is a winner thanks to its slim and essential design, and gives a special atmosphere to terraces, gardens and pools, the geometric angled tubular structure terminates with a directional showerhead equipped with special holes for a rich rainfall jet. The showerhead is available with a smooth surface treatment or in four different knurled patterns, while the vertical tubular body is equipped with elegant ring-shaped controls in tone-on-tone or contrasting nish, available in smo- oth or knurled texture. For greater practicality, this model features a design handshower with magnetic attachment. Also for the outdoor world, Gessi offers customizable details and coordinating elements.

Gessi is one of our recommended suppliers. To keep up to date with their news, click here. And, if you are interested in becoming one of our recommended suppliers, please email  Katy Phillips by clicking here.

Main image credit: Gessi

Has IHG just marked the end of bathroom miniatures forever?

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Has IHG just marked the end of bathroom miniatures forever?

Following hotel group IHG‘s plans to remove miniatures from all of its hotels, editor Hamish Kilburn investigates the significance of opting for bulk-size amenities to reduce plastic waste…

If it takes for David Attenborough to take over the Glastonbury Pyramid Stage in order for the world – and our industry – to sit up and make changes, then so be it. There is no doubt about it that The Blue Planet effect has swept across the UK – and consumers are now demanding for companies to clean up their act to eliminate single-use plastic products.

In its continued effort to reduce plastic waste – and following its and other hotel brand’s decision to eliminate plastic straws in 2019 – IHG has recently pledged to eliminate miniatures from its hotels by 2021. The group, which currently uses an average of 200 million bathroom miniatures each year, is the first global hotel company to commit all brands – to removing bathroom miniatures in favour of bulk-size amenities.

“It’s more important than ever that companies challenge themselves to operate responsibly – we know it’s what our guests, owners, colleagues, investors and suppliers rightly expect,” said Keith Barr, CEO, IHG. “Switching to larger-size amenities across more than 5,600 hotels around the world is a big step in the right direction and will allow us to significantly reduce our waste footprint and environmental impact as we make the change.

“We’ve already made great strides in this area, with almost a third of our estate already adopting the change and we’re proud to lead our industry by making this a brand standard for every single IHG hotel. We’re passionate about sustainability and we’ll continue to explore ways to make a positive difference to the environment and our local communities.”

IHG remains a constituent of the FTSE4Good Index, and recently joined the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s Circular Economy 100 network, signalling its commitment to working with cross-industry partners to build a more sustainable world.

“We welcome IHG’s action to reduce plastic waste through this new commitment,” said Joe Murphy, Lead of the CE100, the Ellen MacArthur Foundation. “Achieving a circular economy will be a challenging journey, but by working together we can find solutions to design out waste, keep materials in use, and regenerate our environment.”

Switching to bulk-size amenities is a tried and tested approach. Whether for business or leisure, hotel guests increasingly want their stays to be more sustainable without any impact on the quality of their experience.

Hotel Designs will be leading the opening session of Independent Hotel Show London on October 15, which will be entitled: The Conscious Hotel Room Report. 

Main image credit: IHG/Kimpton Hotels

A special linen order that didn’t cost the earth

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
A special linen order that didn’t cost the earth

Mitre Linen recently supplied products to the Bardsey Island Trust, a National Nature Reserve and Site of Special Scientific Interest… 

Recommended Supplier Mitre Linen has supplied Bardsey Island Trust with environmentally friendly duvets for the use of guests staying on the remote island, which is just off the coast of North Wales.

The duvets, part of the company’s new Eco collection, are made from recycled plastic bottles and so are fully consistent with the island’s commitment to protecting the environment.

“Until now, visitors have been asked to bring their own duvets with them,” said Caroline Jones from the Bardsey Island Trust, “Mitre’s Eco collection duvets mean we can provide them with truly green duvets made from waste plastic. This struck a chord with us as despite our tireless efforts to keep Bardsey clear of damaging waste, plastics like water bottles travel to us on the oceans from France and Spain, littering our pristine shoreline and creating a hazard for wildlife.

“Mitre Linen is doing something positive by taking bottles, just like those that cause such harm on the island, and turning them into something useful. By choosing to use the Eco duvets we are being consistent with our message to protect not only our special environment here at Bardsey, but to contribute in a small way to reducing the impact of single use plastics everywhere.”

Bardsey Island is one of 10 places taking part in a pilot project aimed at tackling marine plastic pollution on Cold Water islands by implementing innovative, community-based solutions. The initiative is part of the ‘Cold Water Islands Project’, a collaboration between Surfers Against Sewage and Parley for the Oceans.

Only four people permanently live on Bardsey island however, a range of holiday accommodation is available for rent during the summer months. These have compost toilets, no electricity and cold water that is supplied from a mountain spring.  All rubbish is taken away by visitors at the end of their stay.

“The island is such a special place and an internationally important haven for wildlife so we do all we can to keep it clean and as free as possible from any pollutants or artificial products,” said Jones.

Mitre Eco duvets and pillows have fillings made from recycled plastic bottles which are extruded into soft, non-allergenic fibres. This process produces around 70 per cent fewer carbon dioxide emissions, uses 70 per cent less water and 40 per cent less energy compared to standard fibre production, but is as soft and warm as traditionally manufactured alternatives.

“We are absolutely delighted to be able to supply our Eco duvets for the accommodation on Bardsey Island,” said Mitre Linen General Manager Kate Gough. “Part of our ethos as a business is to minimise our impact on the environment and be as sustainable as possible.

The Mitre Eco collection represents our best efforts to make a difference in a positive way. We are proud to be working with Bardsey Island, where the Trust is making huge efforts to operate sustainably in order to help protect the natural world around it.”

Mitre Linen is one of our recommended suppliers. To keep up to date with their news, click here. And, if you are interested in becoming one of our recommended suppliers, click here.

Main image credit: Mitre Linen

Now open: Seychelles eco camp comprised of recycled shipping containers

Hamish Kilburn

The new Cosmoledo Eco Camp in the Seychelles has been designed to minimise impact on the environment while maximising guest comfort… 

Part of the exceptional and adventurous, brand-new Blue Safari Seychelles concept, Cosmoledo Atoll has opened. The resort is comprised of just eight sympathetically restored shipping containers which adhere to the ecological ethos of Blue Safari Seychelles and have been repurposed and intelligently redesigned to form luxury accommodations in the untouched atolls in the Seychelles.

Cosmoledo Eco Camp is the only accommodation available in the wild Cosmoledo Atoll, a cluster of 21 islands located 1,030km (560 nautical miles) from the Seychelles main island of Mahé. It is one of the most remote groups of outer islands in the Seychelles, its perimeter covered with vast, sand flats dotted with islands of various shapes and sizes. A nature lover’s paradise, the ecosystem is pristine and unspoilt.

“Interiors use local woods and a palette of soft neutrals to ensure each pod blends in seamlessly with the sand, surrounding palm trees and dune shrubs.”

Cosmoledo Eco Camp forms part of the new Blue Safari Seychelles concept, which aims to promote conservation of the outer atolls through low-impact eco-tourism projects. It is committed to the preservation and protection of the natural resources of the Seychelles outer islands.

Each of the eight Eco Pods has been beautifully designed to minimise environmental impact while maximising guest comfort. Interiors use local woods and a palette of soft neutrals to ensure each pod blends in seamlessly with the sand, surrounding palm trees and dune shrubs.

A fully retractable front wall means guests can look right out onto the ocean from every aspect and enjoy sea breezes – although air-conditioning is available – and the covered terrace makes a blissful spot to share a drink as the waves lap nearby. Old tree trunks have been repurposed as tables and fishing nets as hanging lamps.

“The camp is completely eco-friendly with the eco-pods sitting on precast plinths rather than cement slabs. All the amenities are eco-friendly, and all cleaning products are fully biodegradable,” explains owner Keith Rose-Innes. “The entire eco-camp can be completely removed without any footprint. It is temporary, and we have chosen the best possible position where there are no nesting birds.”

The Cosmoledo Atoll is famous for its blue waters and fly fishing, with many Giant Trevally, Milkfish, Bonefish and Barracudas in the waters. The undiscovered section of coast is full of raw coral reefs.

Each Eco Pod in Cosmoledo Eco Camp sleeps two adults, has 38 square meters of space.

Is the hospitality sector doing enough for eco travellers?

400 127 Hamish Kilburn
The ethical consumer is on the rise, with two thirds of travellers wanting to stay in green hotels. Clare Taylor, Marketing Manager at Hypnos Contract Beds, explains how hotels can boost their eco credentials so that they and their guests can sleep comfortably… 

The hospitality industry is under pressure to respond to changing customer preferences, embrace initiatives such as recycling and move towards a more sustainable future. Earlier this year, research by the Association of British Travel Agents (ABTA) highlighted eco-tourism as a key trend for 2018. Its annual Travel Trends, report stated that popular TV programmes like Blue Planet II have put sustainability issues firmly in the spotlight, informing people’s choices about where and how they holiday.

Various studies also show evolving consumer preferences for sustainable and eco-travel. A recent global survey, found that as many as 87 per cent of global travellers state that they want to travel sustainably and nearly four in 10 (39 per cent) say they often or always manage to do so.

So what exactly is ‘sustainable tourism’?

Sustainable tourism is a way of traveling and exploring a destination while respecting its culture, environment, and people. Unfortunately, the era of mass travel that has dominated recent decades – with its hotel tour packages and giant beach parties – has meant that most people do not travel this way.

“Sustainable tourism is a trend that is only going to grow over time.”

However, the world is changing, with rising numbers of conscious consumers that value green and ethical products and services. In the travel sector, ABTA anticipates that sustainable tourism will lead to more initiatives such as social enterprises contributing to communities, carbon-neutral group tours and the banning of plastics from beaches.

Sustainable tourism is a trend that is only going to grow over time. That is why hotels need to ensure that they are prepared to meet customer expectations in this area, for now and the future. Fortunately, there some relatively simple steps hotel managers can take to boost their eco credentials.

Energy efficiency

From central heating systems to lighting systems, kitchen equipment, and automated energy management systems, hotels globally are working to reduce energy use while sustaining – and whenever possible enhancing – the guest experience.

Last year, the International Tourism Partnership (ITP), a grouping of hotel industry leaders, released the Hotel Global Decarbonisation Report, which outlines the hotel sector’s target for carbon reduction in order to meet the two-degree Celsius cap set out in the Paris Climate Agreement. The report highlighted that hotels need to reduce their absolute carbon emissions by 66 per cent by 2030 and by 90 per cent by 2050 to fully play their part in mitigating global warming.

“Many of the leading bed manufacturers aim to help hotels to eradicate the waste associated with old beds.”

Smarter on waste

As well as energy efficiency, more and more hotels throughout Europe are working towards the goal of zero waste, which is about developing strategies and tools to manage waste from various areas of the business more effectively. In hotels, waste can be targeted from housekeeping, back-office, catering and maintenance. The most significant impact will be achieved by reducing the amount of waste hotels send to landfill, with the ultimate goal to have none left.

Look out for services from external suppliers that can help managers to boost initiatives such as recycling. Many of the leading bed manufacturers aim to help hotels to eradicate the waste associated with old beds, for example, with a hassle-free disposal and recycling service, deconstructing them to create recycled raw materials for re-use in other industries. This responsible approach results in 100 per cent landfill avoidance and offers a green way of disposing old mattresses, beds and bedding.

Sourcing responsible suppliers

Another way hotel managers can boost their green profile is to ensure that they source products from suppliers that hold ethical production values. This can be achieved on everything from food to furniture, and sustainability doesn’t have to come at the expense of quality or comfort.

As the number of green conscious consumers continues to grow, hotels have an opportunity to grow their business by providing services that meets the aims and ambitions of sustainable tourism. Calls for an international standard for identifying eco-friendly accommodations are getting louder and those hotels that take the initiative in attracting travellers with action on waste, efficiency and recycling will be best placed for the future.

Main image credit: Pixabay

Aerial image of a hotel

The benefits of designing a modern eco-hotel

800 537 Hamish Kilburn

As the spotlight this month continues to shine on Hotel Concepts, Ali Howe explores the benefits of an eco-hotel in the congested arena of international hotel design…

While only 6.8 per cent of hotel reviews mention sustainability, the ones that do are almost exclusively positive. This in turn leads to customers who frequently return to the hotel and advertise it to friends via word of mouth and social media. With shifting attitudes and a need for a socially conscious eco-hotel image, designing for sustainability is a smart business move. Lower running costs also mean potentially higher profits margins. It’s not all about the money though. A medium-sized hotel switching to renewable energy can expect to reduce its carbon footprint by 68,500kg per year. This is crucial to preventing catastrophic climate change. Therefore, many would argue that the focus in hotel design should be to create a hotel around customers’ needs and desires, by creating an eco-hotel that really stands out from the competition.

Shifting customer attitudes
Depending on where your hotel is located, will depend on the type of guests that will be arriving. However, there is a general trend towards a focus on the environment. The amount of customers craving an eco-friendly option is expected to increase by 36 per cent between 2016 and 2018. Making observable eco-conscious upgrades to your hotel will help you maintain this customer base.

By putting sustainability first, you remove the corporate atmosphere and create a space which is interesting, forward thinking and welcoming

Travellers to more rural and natural beauty spots are particularly keen to limit their environmental impact. They expect a hotel designed with nature conservation in mind. By taking a plane and other transport, they are already conscious of their carbon footprint. If they can balance this with an eco-friendly hotel, they will end their vacation feeling positive.

 

Image credit: Unsplash/Sara Dubler

Build a friendly image and loyal customers
62 per cent of people distrust large corporations. They are seriously concerned that profit is at the heart of almost every business. Showing, through your hotel design, that you are willing to go the extra mile to create a socially conscious business highlights that you are about more than just money. Hotels should have a homely feel, where guests feel comfortable and welcome. By putting sustainability first, you remove the corporate atmosphere and create a space which is interesting, forward thinking and welcoming. Solar panels and bamboo toothbrushes are small design features that easily identify your hotel as being environmentally conscious.

Enjoy lower running costs
A luxury, unique and comfortable hotel can be expensive to run. From hiring staff to keeping the place running to ensuring you use the highest quality mattresses, fixed costs are high. Why would you increase costs further by using outdated, inefficient and non-renewable fuel sources? For one megawatt-hour of solar power, you will spend around £40. That’s compared to the £80 needed for the same amount of coal. Switching to solar makes far more financial sense, offering long-term savings. You can then use the extra money to increase the quality of your hotel’s design or simply lower prices for guests.

Making ecological design improvements to your hotel is arguably a no-brainer. You’ll keep up with shifting public attitudes, making you a leader in your area. A sustainable design will not only save you money on running costs, but create an atmosphere that keeps guests returning and always leaving positive reviews.

Main image credit: Unsplash/JoshG

Survey says: Business travellers want to go green, but don’t know where to start

1024 683 Katy Phillips

Business travellers are on the look-out for greener places to stay.

Over half of business travellers (52%) would like to make more sustainable choices when they travel, but don’t know how, according to Booking.com’s global Sustainable Travel Report.

The report indicates that the green travel trend continues to gain momentum with a large majority of global travellers (87%) stating that they want to travel sustainably.

Beyond personal travel, making the right choices for the planet is also extending to the professional sphere, with many people now considering how sustainable their business travel choices really are.

Over half of business travellers questioned (52%) said they would like to make more sustainable choices when they travel, but also that they don’t yet know what steps to take.

Some business travellers are already taking eco-friendly steps, however, when it comes to transport for example, with over half (56%) trying to travel by rail or road rather than taking flights, and 65% using public transportation as much as possible while on a business trip.

Business travellers are also on the look-out for greener places to stay, with over two thirds (69%) intending to stay in eco-friendly accommodation over the next year.

Booking.com says one of the best ways to ensure a trip has less ecological impact is to keep things as local as possible, such as selecting accommodation with locally sourced, sustainable in-room amenity kits or with restaurants that serve locally sourced ingredients.

Making the best use of local resources not only provides a more authentic travel experience, but also helps to cut down the carbon footprint of a trip. Business travellers are increasingly recognizing this, with 70% favouring local products and services during their stay.

Of course, responsibility for eco-friendly travel choices rests not only with employees themselves. Booking.com says businesses are starting to take more responsibility and foster a more eco-friendly approach to business travel.

In fact, 40% of business travellers say it is part of their company’s values to use eco-friendly accommodation, and over a third (35%) say it is part of their company’s travel policy. That said, the majority of those surveyed (61%) feel that their company should do more to promote eco-friendly accommodation options.

A look inside Asia’s first plastic-free hotel with ‘retro chic’ interiors

560 288 Adam Bloodworth

Are we experiencing the death of plastic? Asia’s first plastic-free hotel has opened.

The environmentally conscious Akaryn Hotel Group would like to think so. They’ve revealed that their fourth Asian hotel opening will feature no single-use plastic whatsoever.

Akrya Sukhumvit Bangkok opens later in 2018 and all guests will be given a refillable stainless steel water bottle upon check in. Water coolers will be added to every floor, so guests have an easy and constant supply of water.

Industrial materials meet warm, glamorous accents of gold and lemon yellow

Inside, “simple natural woods” and “accent of modern retro-chic” create a distinct style, within the city’s fashionable Sukhumvit district. Industrial materials meet warm, glamorous accents of lemon yellow and golden in the bedrooms and communal areas.

Away from the historic old centre, Sukhumvit is famous for its shops and bars, as well as authentic restaurants and nightlife.

Family rooms, superior rooms and suites all herald a “5 star” service promise, and there’s an on-site spa.

12.7 million tonnes of plastic find its way into oceans every year

The Akaryn Hotel Group have a diverse range of properties around Thailand. Properties in Chiang Mai and Phuket are relaxing in different ways. The former to experience the north of the country’s spiritual tranquility, while Phuket is the country’s original luxurious beach resort.

The hotel group also have another hotel in Bangkok, in the city’s fashionable Thonglor district, also a hub for nightlife, restaurants and bars.

David Attenborough’s landmark British television programme Blue Planet 11 called on viewers to drastically cut back their plastic use, to help protect the environment for future generations. An estimated 12.7 million tonnes of plastic finds its way into the oceans every year, according to Green Peace.

Rooms are simple and functional, with views out over the the city.

An airy and spacious restaurant will have city views, as is the norm in Bangkok where skyline bars and rooftop bars provide accessible luxury. Floor-to-ceiling glass windows and high ceilings create an opulent feel, highlighting space and the views from the window.

Akrya Sukhumvit Bangkok opens later in 2018 in Bangkok, Thailand

Gennadi Grand Resort

New design-led hotel transforming Rhodes – Gennadi Grand Resort

900 600 Daniel Fountain

A new resort set on the coast overlooking the azure waters of the Aegean, Gennadi Grand Resort opens in May 2018 and will set a new standard for five-star hospitality in the Greek islands.

Part of Lindos Hotel Group, this eco-friendly luxury resort redefines modern luxury, offering a true sense of locality and with an emphasis on bringing the outside in.

Expertly balancing style and comfort and located on an award-winning beach, Gennadi Grand Resort is smartly designed to reflect its breath-taking setting.

With 266 rooms and suites, most with private pools and equal space outside and in, each room offers sophistication and tranquil beauty and creates a holistic hideaway experience. “We are excited to launch Gennadi Grand Resort, which is a great addition to the Lindos Hotels portfolio. Committed to quality and perfection, Gennadi Grand Resort will offer guests a truly unique and authentic five-star Rhodes experience, combined with a sustainability footprint.” said Kathy Minettos, Owner and Managing Director of Lindos Hotels.

Gennadi Grand ResortAn array of public spaces within this impressive new hotel will include a collection of 11 restaurants and bars, three outdoor swimming pools and one indoor heated pool, a spa/wellness centre, gym, a green roof and theatre, a shopping arcade, conference facilities and a mini club.

As an eco-friendly hotel, Gennadi Grand Resort will operate under a BMS (building management system), to enable efficient energy management. In addition, the property will use a reverse osmosis (RO) plant which provides 20,000 litres of clean, sustainable water per hour using a system that requires little maintenance at low cost. Other energy saving, eco-friendly solutions include a green roof in order to minimise the sunlight reflection and improve the overall microclimate, energy saving glass panels, the latest eco-focused air conditioning/heating system, recycling, litter separation system and energy saving bulbs.

Chapman Taylor Mui Dinh Eco-Resort Hotels

Mui Dinh eco-resort masterplan wins approval

1000 407 Daniel Fountain

Chapman Taylor is pleased to report that the 1,100,000m² master plan design for the Mui Dinh Eco-Resort in Vietnam has received approval from the Vietnamese government.

Set on a beautiful site on the east coast of Vietnam, Mui Dinh Eco-Resort is designed to reflect the key elements of the surrounding environment – sand, sea, salt and sun. Intended as an unrivalled hospitality-led mixed-use development in Asia, the development is inspired by the rich local history of Mui Dinh, particularly that of the Cham tribal culture and architecture as well as the lost world of the last dynasty.

Mui Dinh eco-resort Vietnam
Six resort hotels and a boutique hotel provide a total of 7,000 rooms. 500 ocean-facing villas are also available, with all residents served by a leisure offering including a theme park, a casino, a beach club and a mountain clubhouse.

Chapman Taylor’s Bangkok studio is responsible for the design master plan for this striking coastal resort.

Director Oscar Martinez said: “We are delighted that the Vietnamese government has given its full support to our master plan and this ambitious and unique eco-development, which will transform this beautiful coastal area into a new exciting sustainable destination and give an economic boost to this region of eastern Vietnam.”

Studio Saxe - Hotel Nalu-Nosara

Sneak Peek: Eco-focussed, sustainable Hotel Nalu-Nosara

999 569 Daniel Fountain

A young, up-and-coming architecture firm – Studio Saxe – has completed a boutique hotel and yoga studio set into the tropical landscape of Nosara, Costa Rica.

The project is another in a long line of sustainable buildings from a practice that blends contemporary design with local craftsmanship, embracing the natural environment that surrounds and frames the architecture.

Nosara has become a destination for visitors from around the world for health, wellness and surfing and so the owners of Hotel Nalu-Nosara, Nomel and Mariya Libid, wanted a design that reflected the attitude of their guests. The yoga studio, which has also become incredibly popular as a multipurpose gym space, is enveloped by lush vegetation on all sides and therefore becomes a jungle retreat for exercise and relaxation.

Guests at the hotel are provided with individual pavilion ‘homes’ rather than rooms, located just a few minutes’ walk from the ocean. By breaking up the mass of the
traditionally monolithic hotel, the architects were able scatter living spaces amongst the trees and create a sense of privacy while surrounded by the natural world. Each
pavilion has been carefully positioned following meticulous research into wind and sun patterns, while ensuring they are all provided with an individual view out to the
landscape.

Overlapping timber roofs project out over each pavilion providing shade from the intense equatorial sun. These roofs are made of recycled teak planks, creating uneven patterns that further emphasise this fusion of local craftsmanship and modern design. Rooms are connected via corridors that filter dappled sunlight down from the pergola roofs above and frame more views out the lush surroundings.

Architect Benjamin Garcia Saxe said: “Our project at Nalu represents the power of simple, low-key, modern tropical architecture. It has quickly become a town favourite,
which shows that there is a real desire to occupy spaces that bring people closer to nature, while addressing the needs of contemporary life.”

studiosaxe.com

1hotel Paris - Kengo Kuma + Associates

Kengo Kuma to develop ‘eco-luxury’ 1hotel in Paris

1000 522 Daniel Fountain

Kengo Kuma is planning a Parisian project which hopes to incorporate sustainability and hospitality design into an ‘innovative eco-luxury hotel’ which will ultimately serve as a landmark, as well as a popular destination.

The building, which will be called ‘1hotel Paris’ will be bedecked with greenery, becoming what the firm is calling a ‘green lung’ for the neighbourhood. Wooden façade panels will overlap and be arranged in a certain way to blur the shape of the structure.

1hotel Paris - Kengo Kuma + AssociatesIn a comment, the firm said: “Within a series of repetitive volumes along the Avenue de France, our design strategy was to develop a sculptural form, as if shaped by natural erosion, allowing light to reach the avenue below.”

1hotel Paris - Kengo Kuma + Associates
The centre of the hotel will be open, with inner rooms with private balconies overlooking a series of gardens below. On the roof, the hotel will have a rooftop terrace overlooking the bustling neighbourhood. The project is scheduled to be completed by 2022.

All images ©LUXIGON and courtesy of Kengo Kuma + Associates

Maritim Hotels - Green Focus

Sustainability Focus: Going green with German hotel group Maritim

750 500 Daniel Fountain

Germany’s largest owner-managed hotel group has increased its conference and incentives offer by upgrading more than a quarter of its German portfolio and introducing green initiatives.

Expanding on the company motto ‘Conference and living under one roof’, more than 3,000 rooms, bathrooms, public areas, meetings and events spaces have been refurbished as part of a comprehensive redevelopment programme.

These new features can be found in rooms at some of the 33 Maritim hotels across Germany including in Königswinter, Ulm, Munich, Hannover, Stuttgart, Darmstadt, Bad Homburg, Cologne and Würzburg and its adjacent Congress Centrum. Maritim’s hotel in Bonn is set to be upgraded this year.

The largest hotel in the city, Maritim Hotel Stuttgart has recently completed an 18-month renovation. The property features 13 conference rooms, including the historic 750 capacity, 19th century riding hall, ‘‘Alten Stuttgarter Reithalle’’. For larger events, the hotel offers direct access to the renowned “Liederhalle” convention centre.

Maritim’s flagship hotel in Hannover has recently revamped 15 event rooms and ten conference suites which can host groups of all sizes from 3 to 1,500, as well as new sound systems. Reaffirming their commitment to environmental matters, all Maritim hotels across the region are taking proactive steps to support the landmark German Sustainability Codex, which measures the sustainable performance of organisations.

LeRoy Sheppard, Maritim Director of Sales UK & Ireland, explains: “Sustainability is now an essential part of the meetings and events industry, with an ever greater number of delegates and organisers requesting their venue provide a socially responsible package. Mindful of this trend, we’ve incorporated these environmentally conscious demands to deliver a dedicated meetings and events offer. With a wide range of city centre hotels and conveniently located airport hotels, we have something for everyone.’’

1 Hotels announces three new hotels

1 Hotels announces hotels in three new destinations

950 468 Daniel Fountain

1 Hotels, the luxury lifestyle hotel brand, has announced that it will expand its portfolio in the USA and internationally with three new destinations, including Haitang Bay, Sanya (China), Cabo San Lucas (Mexico) and Silicon Valley (CA).

The three new projects announced are in addition to the brand’s forthcoming, highly-anticipated 1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge opening this month, and existing properties, 1 Hotel Central Park and 1 Hotel & Homes South Beach.

The new locations mark an exciting chapter for 1 Hotels, positioning the brand as international leaders in environmentally-responsible hospitality and innovation. As a luxury lifestyle hotel brand inspired by nature, 1 Hotels aims to educate and inspire consumers will of mindful, eco-conscious design, innovative programming, farm fresh food and beverage offerings, and sustainable architecture. This expansion is the beginning of a global growth plan to bring the brand and it’s mission to new audiences.

“The 1 Hotels brand aims to show luxury travelers that they can live well, do good and connect with the world around them,” said 1 Hotels Founder and CEO Barry Sternlicht. “We are more than a brand, we’re a cause. Now, more than ever, we’re excited to introduce 1 Hotels in naturally luxurious destinations worldwide and continue our mission of building socially responsible hotels while protecting the world around us. ”

The first international property for the group, 1 Hotel Haitang Bay will open in late 2018. 1 Hotel Haitang Bay will provide the brand with an opportunity to showcase how a resort in China’s top domestic tourism market can operate in a sustainable way. The ambitious property will be the first Chinese development for the brand, developed in partnership with Sunshine Insurance Group and designed by Oval Partnership. The hotel will feature 280 guestrooms and suites, including three sky villas and feature a 1 Hotels signature organic spa, expansive fitness center, and pool. An onsite farm with be run and managed by the property, providing fresh and organic fruits and vegetables for the 15,000 square feet of signature restaurants and lounges, and more than 6,000 square feet of catering and meeting rooms.

Slated to open in Fall 2019, 1 Hotel & Homes Cabo, developed in partnership with the Questro Grupo, sits on the historic Hacienda site, directly on the only year-round swimmable beach and steps from the marina and Cabo’s dining and nightlife district. With unobstructed views of the Land’s End rock formation, the 115 room and 50 home property is a retreat amongst it all, with four swimming pools, organic spa and fitness facilities, two signature restaurants, a juice bar, and a stunning rooftop bar. The property will also boast more than 6,000 square feet of conference and events space and signature retail outlets. To learn more about 1 Homes Cabo visit: www.1homescabo.com

1 Hotel Sunnyvale located in the heart of Silicon Valley and steps from Google’s Mountainview campus, will open in late 2019 as the brands first West Coast outpost. This project, developed by Starwood Capital Group in partnership with SB Architects, is perfectly situated in the innovation capital of America, a destination where the brand’s core values of wellness, conscious living, and commitment to sustainability will be certain to resonate with locals and travelers. The renovation project will have 332 guestrooms, more than 10,000 square feet of food and beverage space, a 9,000 square foot spa and fitness center, and 19,000 square feet of meeting space.

www.1hotels.com

Phi Phi Island Village Resort finalises £3.7m refurbishment

650 388 Daniel Fountain

Phi Phi Island Village Beach Resort is set to re-launch in November, following the final phase of its £3.7 million (THB160 million) refurbishment.

The overall vision for the renovations follows a “Chao Lay Southern Thai design concept” offering guests a rare combination of natural simplicity and comfort in one of Thailand’s most inspiring destinations.

======
RELATED: Phi Phi Island Village Beach Resort announces £3.5m renovation project
======

To strike a balance between authentic Thai architecture and a more modern tropical style resort, Thailand-based design firm Last Word Studio has created stylish interiors for the revamped bungalows while drawing on southern Thai architectural traditions. Spacious, airy, comfortable living spaces have long been a signature of Phi Phi Island Beach Resort. By building with local materials and focusing on air circulation, the properties blend with the tropical surroundings and are kept cool all year-round.

Phi Phi Village Island Resort

“Although the main aim is to upgrade our rooms and facilities to keep pace with the demands of visitors from around the world, we have also been very careful not to lose the essence of Thai culture and tradition that people expect when they visit our country,” said Mr. Chao Treenawong, General Manager, Phi Phi Island Village Beach Resort. “The contemporary Thai design is still a major attraction, even on a remote island like Koh Phi Phi, but it must also evolve with the times.”

Reflecting this approach, the new bungalows are raised slightly from the ground on sturdy pillars and boast tall, pointed roofs which catch the sea breezes and funnel fresh air through the interiors. Air-conditioning units have been also installed, even though they are not always required; thanks to a sensitive, smart design scheme that dates back hundreds of years.

Phi Phi Island Village Resort

“Through the décor and design our new rooms offer a local Thai village feel, but they also come with all the added amenities of modern lifestyle. By staying true to the region’s architectural roots, we have also remained sensitive to the island environment – physically, and in terms of sustainability,” said Mr. Treenawong.

In addition to these newly designed rooms, Phi Phi Island Village Resort recently completed their new-look restaurant Api, as well as a stylish al fresco coffee club called bean/Co. To accompany these new additions a new menu has been created, called The Beach House. All of the new amenities complement the elegant architecture and ambiance of the resort’s Ruan Thai restaurant, Phi Phi Island’s only authentic Thai dining experience.

======
RELATED: Phi Phi Island Village Resort committed to sustainability
======

Phi Phi Island Village Beach Resort is constantly evolving and innovating in terms of eco-sustainability. The resort recently installed a reverse osmosis (RO) plant which provides 20,000 litres of clean per hour, whilst managing a coral reef rehabilitation nursery off the shores of the property. In addition, a 5-acre plot near the resort grounds has been dedicated to the planting and nurturing of new mangroves. Resort guests will have the opportunity to join staff and community leaders in bi-annual mangrove planting events, with up to 700 mangrove trees to be placed in the on-site plantation, as well in the coral restoration project.

Enterprise Centre - BREEAM approved shortlist for Building Awards

Importance of BREEAM recognised with Building Awards shortlist

1000 606 Daniel Fountain

The importance of BREEAM, the internationally recognised measure of sustainability for buildings and communities, has been recognised with 7 out of the 10 projects shortlisted for the Sustainability Project of the Year category having achieved BREEAM certification.

The projects span a range of sectors from hotels to offices, education to laboratories and research facilities. They are The Enterprise Centre, designed by architects Architype for client Adapt and University of East Anglia; 5 Broadgate, designed by Make architects for British Land; Centre for Medicine designed by Associated Architects for University of Leicester; Land Rover BAR HQ designed by HGP Architects; 7 Air Street, London, designed by Barr Gazetas for The Crown Estates; Penarth Learning Community by HLM architects for Vale of Glamorgan Council; and Hub by Premier Inn designed by architects Axiom.

In the creation of these buildings, the projects teams have all strived to embed sustainability through innovative design and procurement. There has been a clear focus on delivering exceptional schemes that look to the future and place emphasis on the building performance and the users well-being. In many instances the way in which these projects have been delivered and their environmental impact and performance will influence the design of many other schemes.

For example, the Enterprise Centre is the first building in the UK to be wrapped in thatched timber cassettes, combining traditional construction with modern techniques whilst 5 Broadgate features a super-insulated primary solid envelope that helps to reduce solar heat gain and helps the building to be almost 50% more energy efficient than the requirements of Part L of the Building Regulations. Elsewhere, 7 Air Street has demonstrated how a 1920’s office building can be refurbished to create a modern office that will save 350 tonnes of carbon per year whilst introducing green lease tenancies designed to encourage occupants to adopt energy saving practices. With an aim to be the most sustainable sports team in the UK, Land Rover BAR have shown that through the creation of a small garden on their site, ecology can be integrated into a project. The garden is now home to 69 new species, compared to eight prior to the development of the building.

“Each of the shortlisted projects has embraced sustainability in a different way and they should all be commended on their efforts to create low energy buildings that respect their surroundings and provide adaptable space for occupants and future generations,” commented Martin Townsend, Director of Sustainability at BRE Global. “The fact that the vast majority are BREEAM certified is testimony to the global position the standard holds and further illustrates BREEAM’s importance in driving innovation and best practice through the application of sustainability.”

The Building Awards are being held on the 8th November at the Grosvenor House, London.

Construction

Guest Blog: James Fisher – sustainability in practice in existing buildings

960 525 Guest Blog

Investors and owners of large commercial property portfolios throughout Europe are constantly on the hunt for a distinctive edge that will set them aside from the competition. The never-ending battle for an increase in rental yield, lower management costs, fully leased properties and happy tenants is something that we are all too familiar with.

James FisherCouple that with some of the wider global challenges on-going presently and you can see that how it would be easy for a property fund or asset manager to lose a little sleep at night. Luckily for them, there are some new techniques and tactics being adopted by the most forward thinking property companies that are helping them maintain their commercial advantage.

Citycon Oyj, based in Helsinki, has recently launched a project to introduce BREEAM In-Use (BIU) certification to 75% of its properties by 2017. As the leading owner, developer and manager of urban grocery-anchored shopping centres in the Nordic and Baltic regions, Citycon clearly see BREEAM In-Use certification as a cost-effective way to manage their EUR 5 billion portfolio.

According to Nils Styf, Citycon’s Chief Investment Officer, BREEAM In-Use certificates provide Citycon with a comprehensive overview of the environmental performance of their portfolio and a useful platform to identify improvements.

As a result of their recent environmental focus, Citycon have reduced their reliance on purchased heating energy by an impressive 30% in 2015 for one Centre by using renewable energy. Of course, this also positively benefits their carbon footprint too. Definitely a cost and carbon win-win and of course, these benefits can be realised in many more of their properties over time.

Stockholm
Interestingly it is not only private commercial organisations that are seeing the opportunity presented by using BREEAM certification. The methodology has also been widely adopted recently by the City of Stockholm. Stockholms stad, the public sector administration that is responsible for managing the majestic Swedish capital, is fully adopting BREEAM In-Use as part of its asset management strategy.

As part of their commitment, Stockholm is also taking part in a new pilot project aimed at creating a more cost-effective volume assessment route for BREEAM IN-Use across its portfolio. Focusing on a parcel of 50 public buildings, the objective is to establish a cost-effective methodology for certifying and maintaining certification of asset portfolios against BREEAM In-Use International 2015.

The pilot project will look at the type of evidence common to a large asset portfolio and how it can be supplied, collected and verified in order to minimise the need for additional site visits. Working to pre-defined criteria, it will focus on ascertaining the type of evidence that applies to buildings with similar characteristics or properties – asset clusters – and on establishing whether an assessor can review this evidence and accept it as applicable to all.

The project is a partnership between BRE Global (BREEAM), the Real Estate Administration of Stockholms Stad, engineering consulting firm PQR Consult AB and BREEAM In-Use assessor Piacon AB. Taking place over a one year period, the process will inform future years of the BREEAM In-Use recertification cycle.

Vertical Forest

To date, the City has 100 of its buildings assessed or in progress under BREEAM In-Use in total. It’s also worth noting that these assets represent a broad spectrum of architectural styles, building ages, uses and building services designs. In fact, even the historic (and world famous) City Hall building where the Nobel prize-giving ceremony takes place each year has also been assessed. If the method can help to improve the sustainability of such a prestigious landmark building, then it can definitely work for across more modern assets too.

The fact that both commercial and public sector property owners are now choosing BREEAM to set them apart, only adds weight to the case for sustainability to be considered as a matter of course in everyday business. This is borne out by the findings from the recent CBRE EMEA Investor Intentions Survey 2016 explored in more detail in an article authored by Rebecca Pearce, Senior Director, EMEA Head of Sustainability for CBRE published recently by the Better Buildings Partnership.

The evidence is loud and clear, the market now understands the compelling reasons to buy asset certification. In the CBRE survey just 11% of respondents now view sustainability as an insignificant factor during due diligence. Even more compelling is that 39% of the institutional investors surveyed cite sustainable asset selection as ‘critical’ or ‘one of the most important criteria’ when selecting properties to acquire.

In a complicated commercial property market, at least the road ahead for asset managers is becoming clear with solutions like BREEAM providing a tangible route to create sustainable property management. After all, if Citycon and the City of Stockholm can see the benefit, there must be something in it right? London, Paris, New York – we’re ready if you are.

Hotel Verde, Tanzania

Bakhresa Group and Verde Hotels to build Zanzibar’s ‘greenest hotel’

1000 545 Daniel Fountain

The Tanzanian based Bakhresa Group has appointed Verde Hotels from South Africa to develop and manage the total overhaul and upgrading of the old Mtoni Marine Hotel in Zanzibar. The brand new five star property will be known as Hotel Verde, and Zanzibar’s ‘greenest hotel’.

“We are serious about being the leaders of the Green Economy sector and therefore we approached the developers of Africa’s greenest properties, Verde Hotels, to ensure that Hotel Verde Zanzibar will be the greenest hotel in East Africa” stated Mr. Said Salim Awadh Bakhresa, Chairman of the Bakhresa Group.

Hotel Verde Zanzibar is set to take sustainable development to new heights in east Africa and become a flagship for tourism in Zanzibar and Tanzania.

Hotel Verde, Tanzania
Mr. Bahkresa has commissioned the Verde Hotels Group to manage the development and operate the hotel as a certified sustainable establishment that offers a carbon neutral hotel experience. Verde Hotels will work with Estim Construction who have a strong reputation for project excellence in the East African region. Hotel Verde Zanzibar will be pursuing independent certification, utilising the Green Star rating tool from the Green Building Council of South Africa (GBCSA).

Verde Hotels intends to integrate sustainability into every facet of their involvement in the construction, as well as throughout the hotel’s daily operation.

Hotel Verde, Tanzania
Sustainability strategies that will be implemented in the redevelopment phase include passive and active design, that optimise resource efficiency; these include: renewable energy generation; regenerative drive elevators, a grey water recycling system, responsible procurement, waste minimisation and management and indoor environmental quality optimisation, to mention just a few.

Hotel Verde Zanzibar will showcase the integration of 5 star luxury and environmental best practice. The hotel will feature 142 ultra-stylish rooms, luxury suites, a spa, gym, restaurants, entertainment and marina.

Hotel Verde, Tanzania
The contemporary design fused with local Tanzanian elements will be an attraction for local and international guests to enjoy whilst keeping to the standards and practices of responsible tourism principals.

As a hotel management group, Verde Hotels specialises in a turnkey management approach that includes the construction phase of new hotels and the renovation phase of existing buildings that are subsequently operated and managed by Verde Hotels, with sustainability at their core. The aim is to transcend conventional hotel and business standards whilst entering into a new era of environmental consciousness and responsible tourism.

Bakhresa.com
www.VerdeHotels.co.za