Green Hotels

This entry was posted by on Saturday, 13 March, 2010 at

Business travelers have a wide selection of hotels to choose from when they are on the road. Many consultants spend more time traveling than they do in their home. Ever wonder how green the hotels you stay at are? Here are some hotels that have made an effort to use sustainable practices.

The Waikiki Sheraton has made an effort to create options that are good for the environment. The focus is on meeting rooms for their business clients. Conference rooms are only cooled by the HVAC system while in use, a good idea that can be applied to any building that holds rooms which are not always occupied. There are several other improvements, such as fluorescent lighting, and a parking discount for hybrids. The Waikiki Sheraton also offers a service common at many hotels, you can request to reduce linen washing. Many hotels tell you to leave the towels and washcloths in the bathroom in a certain area if you want the hotel to wash them, and another if you plan to reuse them. This is most useful if you plan an extended stay, but be aware of your water usage.

Further research shows that there is an organization dedicated to green hotels. This site is helpful as it includes members from many different cities in many different states. Summaries are mostly written in standard hotel terms, so many of them don’t focus on the green strategies of the hotels themselves. Making the effort to join a green hotel initiative does show promise by itself, as it shows that the hotels are at least conscious of their environmental impact. Not all members of this site are hotels; there are some members that make items such as cleaning products and paper, and there are some organic food vendors. It’s not always easy to know where the hotel you stay at buys its supplies, but this has the potential to make a big difference.

Fortunately, another website has reviewed many hotels by state and has graded them on their environmental performance. Green Hotel Reviews mentions the California Green Lodging Program. This is a
government initiative which has several criteria to grade the hotels in California. It gives some reasons why green initiatives for hotels are important. Since hotels may rent out hundreds of rooms a day, their environmental impact is much greater than any individual family. Hotels have large water, food, and energy bills, so even a reduction of a few percent can make a big difference. California offers some green resources for travelers if you want to know more about this topic.

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