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DALLAS—The Fairmont Dallas has unveiled the new Pyramid Restaurant & Bar. It features contemporary décor and new organic, sustainable menus created by Executive Chef j.W. Foster. The new Pyramid, at more than 7,000 square feet, resonates with a modern, sleek, contemporary look evoking a stylish vigor and energy. The look and feel are imaginative and engaging and feature a color palette in rich tones of celadon, taupe, gold, and moss with accents of polished bronze, walnut and mahogany against a backdrop of earth-toned wall coverings and dark mahogany flooring. Since his arrival in Dallas last year from his native Canada, Chef j.W. Foster has focused on creating a “fresh market” approach to menus for both the restaurant and bar.
SAN FRANCISCO—Investing in renovations that make hotels more sustainable will increase their value, slash operating costs and attract customers who are trending toward more sustainable hospitality experiences, PKF Capital managing partner Henry Bose told a conference here on green hotels. “For every dollar you can add to the bottom line of a San Francisco hotel, more than $11 is added in value,” Bose says. Bose said that so far there are too few hotels that have earned the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED certification to compare their financial performance against traditional hotels. But he indicated that his firm, in conjunction with PKF Consulting and Research, is planning to produce a study on the issue.
ROSEMONT, ILL.—Chicagoland’s new eco-savvy and luxury destination hotel, the 556-room InterContinental Chicago O’Hare, is going above and beyond in its quest to lighten businesses’ impact on the environment. Not only does the sophisticated, design-forward property utilize 100 percent renewable energy credits from wind, but the InterContinental Chicago O’Hare also features a green roof, recycles all materials used throughout its hotel and convention area, and helps businesses and organizations support sustainability with its “Green Meetings” program.
NATIONAL REPORT—Faced with water restrictions and rising propane costs at its lodging operations in Alaska’s Denali National Park & Preserve, Denali Park Resorts had to do something to reduce laundry-related expenses. It was taking a lot of hot water to clean the sheets, towels and kitchen rags from 986 guestrooms and nine restaurants. Thanks to the installation of a $45,000 ozone laundry system in May, the savings have been significant. In fact, as of early September, the system had already generated $75,000 in utility savings. The savings came quick thanks to the company’s 97 percent occupancy during its busy May through September season.
PARSIPPANY, N.J.—As part of its evolving “green” strategy, Wyndham Hotels and Resorts announced the launch of a new ecologically-friendly uniform line for hotel staff using recycled polyester fibers spun from plastic beverage bottles. Select Wyndham hotels will introduce the new uniforms beginning this fall by job category. Front desk and other customer-facing employees are required to begin wearing the new uniforms by the end of 2009 and housekeeping and other back-of-house staff by 2010. All new properties are required to provide the new uniforms upon opening. The textiles are produced from post-consumer products, including recycled plastic beverage bottles, which are processed into flakes, then filaments that are spun into yarn and ultimately woven into very soft fabrics.
PRASLIN BAY, ST. LUCIA—The Westin Le Paradis Beach & Golf Resort, St. Lucia is aiming to be the Caribbean’s first fossil fuel independent resort when it opens in June 2009. The 554-acre resort is being developed with special consideration to social and environmental impacts, with the goal of improving the community in St. Lucia. Situated along the island’s east coast, The Westin Le Paradis Beach & Golf Resort, St. Lucia will feature 192 rooms, as well as an 18-hole Greg Norman Signature Golf Course and the Westin brand’s full range of services and amenities. “Protecting and preserving the local environment is our biggest goal for the project,” said Kierron Dolby, managing director of DCG Properties, LLC, developer of The Westin Le Paradis Beach & Golf Resort, St. Lucia.
NEW YORK—The Network of Executive Women in Hospitality, Inc. (NEWH), a nonprofit network providing scholarships, education, and leadership opportunities for individuals in the hospitality industry, recently gathered leaders from across the hospitality industry to discuss and debate the top trends in green and sustainable design in its second leadership forum. The Sustainable Hospitality Leadership Forum was designed to spark creative ideas and strategies for how hospitality and design experts can incorporate environmentally-sensitive practices, while maintaining a luxury experience for guests.
FRANKFURT, GERMANY—Nominations are now being invited for the IMEX Green Awards 2009. The annual awards, which are presented during the international trade show’s Gala Dinner in Frankfurt, have become a strong indicator of new trends and developments amongst suppliers and buyers within the global meetings industry. The awards comprise three different environmental category prizes and one that recognizes an outstanding contribution to a local community project—the Commitment to the Community Award. The most established award, the Green Meetings Award, increasingly attracts extremely strong entries from corporations and agencies worldwide that have embraced the principles of green meetings and, as a result, can demonstrate detailed environmental improvements and savings.
PARSIPPANY, N.J. —Wyndham Worldwide, one of the world’s largest hospitality companies, is expanding its environmental efforts through a “Global Green Day” event and the appointment of Faith Taylor as vice president, Sustainability and Innovation. “Global Green Day” will take place in Wyndham Worldwide offices around the globe including U.S. locations in Fort Lauderdale and Orlando, Fla.; Indianapolis; Springfield, Miss.; Las Vegas; Parsippany, N.J.; Aberdeen, S.D.; Johnson City, Tenn.; and Redmond, Wash. International locations include: Australia, Canada, India, South Africa, Southeast Asia, Mexico and the United Kingdom. The event will include educational components on the WyndhamGreen program.
PORTLAND, ORE.—Sage Hospitality, a hospitality development and management company, announced that the famed Meier & Frank building in the heart of downtown Portland will reopen this fall as the Nines, a Starwood Luxury Collection Hotel. Once the store where Portland residents shopped when they needed to dress “to the nines,” the hotel ushers in a new level of style and eco-luxury on the top nine floors of this historic building on Pioneer Square. “The building has been completely recreated, blending the legacy of its architectural heritage with a world-class hotel,” said Walter Isenberg, president and CEO of Sage Hospitality, the Denver-based company that developed this benchmark preservation project and is managing the hotel.
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