news & features


Dover Downs Hotel & Casino a Deserving Host for Sustain 2016 Event

DOVER, DEL.—When the two-day Sustain 2016 green lodging conference kicks off on March 14, it will be held at Dover Downs Hotel & Casino, a venue with a long list of green initiatives. The 80-acre property, which features a 500-room hotel, casino, horse racing, entertainment, and multiple restaurants, is a Delaware Green Lodging Program participant and dedicated to reducing waste, improving energy and water efficiency, and supporting local farmers. According to Ed Sutor, President of Dover Downs Hotel & Casino, the reasons for pursuing sustainability have been many but one reason has certainly been to keep costs under control. Dover Downs Hotel & Casino operates in a state with a gaming tax rate of 62 percent. At one time that was 25 percent. Dover Downs Hotel & Casino also operates in a highly competitive gaming region. In 1996 there were 15 casinos in the Mid-Atlantic region. Today there are 28 with more opening this year. From a waste management perspective, Dover Downs Hotel & Casino has seen significant improvement in recent years.

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publisher's point of view
Dover Downs Initiatives ‘Critical to Getting Conventions’

“It has absolutely helped us to have such a focus on sustainability.” These are the words of Ed Sutor, President of Dover Downs Hotel & Casino, Dover, Del. I spoke with Ed recently for an article I posted this past week on the property’s sustainability initiatives. I had asked Ed whether or not what Dover Downs does in the area of sustainability brings in new business. “We reply to RFPs all the time,” Ed told me. “Inevitably, one of the questions is: ‘Describe your green program.’ It is critical to getting conventions.” One example of an event that Dover Downs will be hosting this year is Sustain 2016, the Mid-Atlantic’s Annual Hospitality Conference, on March 14 to 15. I will be moderating a session at that event entitled, “Innovation All Stars: Case Studies of Three Companies Determined to Make Our World More Sustainable.” Panelists will include: William F. Kratzer, Chief Technology Officer, BioHitech; Justin Fishkin, Chief Strategy Officer, Local Motors; and Micah Green, CEO, Maidbot. Be sure to attend the event if you can.

guest column
Impact Extends CSR Program to Wounded, Homeless Veterans

When I established Impact Enterprises, Inc.’s environmental initiative in 2003, the word “environment” invoked a particular meaning; the physical world around us, nature. It did not include people. People, however, are central to our environment, and as such deserve protection and help as do our forests, rivers, lakes, and air. As Impact expanded its environmental initiative, it began to see the unfair challenges so many are confronted with on a daily basis. When possible, we as a community, as individuals, or as a company cannot in good faith turn a blind eye to these unfair challenges. In 2010, in collaboration with Lt. Chris Salisbury USMC Foundation,* Impact expanded its corporate responsibility program to include assistance to our seriously wounded soldiers and homeless veterans, many of whom have had their emotional strength shattered by combat experiences. Our program began with contributions to respected military charitable organizations, and soon grew into providing support to those in need.

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green hotel focus
Virgin Hotels Chicago Achieves LEED Gold from U.S. Green Building Council

CHICAGO—Virgin Hotels announced that Virgin Hotels Chicago, the brand’s first property, has achieved LEED Gold certification, a nationally accepted benchmark for the design, construction and operation of high performance green buildings. The hotel and the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) celebrated the achievement with a hosted panel discussion surrounding reducing carbon, reaching net zero and greening supply chains in the hospitality industry. “Our goal as a company is to have all our properties achieve LEED Silver, so we are ecstatic to have exceeded that benchmark in Chicago,” said Raul Leal, CEO of Virgin Hotels. “As we continue to open additional properties, we have aspirational goals of moving towards a net zero carbon footprint across the board.”

upcoming events
Webinar: Track Your Hotel Carbon Footprint

Friday, February 12, 2016

Hotel Association of Canada Conference
Hilton Toronto

Monday, February 29, 2016

International Restaurant & Foodservice Show of New York
Jacob K. Javits Convention Center, New York

Sunday, March 06, 2016

Sustain 2016, the Mid-Atlantic’s Annual Hospitality Conference
Dover Downs Hotel & Casino, Dover, Del.

Monday, March 14, 2016

personnel profile
Nate Lindsay is New Executive Chef at Bardessono Hotel & Spa

YOUNTVILLE, CALIF.—Bardessono Hotel & Spa, the LEED Platinum Certified wine country retreat in the heart of Napa Valley, announces the appointment of Nate Lindsay as the new Executive Chef. Lindsay will oversee all aspects of the culinary experience at Bardessono and for Lucy Restaurant & Bar, the hotel’s award-winning, signature restaurant presenting innovative, garden-inspired cuisine that embodies the property’s “exceptional by nature” modern aesthetic and eco-spirit. “We are delighted to welcome Chef Lindsay to Bardessono and excited to watch Lucy thrive from his fresh culinary vantage, talent and enthusiasm,” said Sileshi Mengiste, Divisional Vice President, Luxury Division Remington Hotels. “Chef Lindsay brings a balanced approach to food thanks to his successful background of intuitive leadership and creative talent—all critical traits to help ensure continued growth and success at Lucy and Bardessono.” Most recently, Lindsay was the Executive Chef at the farm-to-fork restaurant, Jardenea, at Melrose Georgetown Hotel in Washington D.C. Lindsay embraces the philosophy of serving inventive dishes.

blog post
Scribbles from Day One of Ecotourism and Sustainable Conference North America
4 days ago

I had an opportunity to attend the first day of the Ecotourism and Sustainable Conference North America last week. The event was held in Tampa, Fla. at the Patel Center for Global Solutions at the University of South Florida. It was the first North America conference for the International Ecotourism Society. Approximately 100 attended the first day of the event. About 30 or so could not make it because of weather-caused flight cancellations. The conference featured speakers who provided a global perspective on the environmental challenges we all face while also featuring case studies on specific properties or projects. Dr. David Randle, Program Director, Sustainable Tourism Concentration, USF Patel College of Global Sustainability, was one of the first presenters on day one. He addressed global environmental challenges as well as those local to Florida, a state that was expected to draw 100 million tourists in 2015. The fastest growing industry in the world is tourism, Randle said, and sustainable tourism is the fastest growing sector.

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