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SAN DIEGO—Paradise Point, A Destination Hotel on San Diego’s Mission Bay, has partnered with San Diego International Airport on a new sustainable travel program. The Good Traveler program, piloted by San Diego International Airport, seeks to offset environmental impacts of travel by encouraging guests to purchase carbon offsets in the form of merchandise or add-ons to hotel reservations. For just $1, a traveler can effectively offset 500 miles of air travel or 200 miles of driving. All of program funds will go directly towards conservation projects counteracting the environmental impacts of greenhouse gas emissions. Paradise Point is the first hotel to participate in The Good Traveler program, encouraging and inspiring sustainable travel by resort guests. Seeking to make conservation approachable and inclusive for all travelers, The Good Traveler provides participants with a collectible sticker that can be proudly displayed. Paradise Point offers guests the option to participate by purchasing carbon offsets when booking a room reservation online. Purchases are available in one-dollar increments to allow guests to offset the amount of carbon emissions generated by their individual mode of transportation and distance traveled.
BONAIRE, DUTCH ANTILLES—Already a leader in efforts to ensure that Bonaire’s vibrant coral reef system continues to thrive, Harbour Village Beach Club has installed an innovative underwater video and data monitoring system. The equipment will let students on the island and throughout the world gain field research experience, along with a deeper understanding of how important coral reefs are to healthy coastal ecosystems and the underwater creatures inhabiting them. Harbour Village will work with the Teens 4 Oceans network and the group View Into the Blue to give students everywhere a way to view the fascinating marine life just off the resort’s sandy shore.
LONDON—ITP (the International Tourism Partnership) announced that, following an extensive search and interview process (including with Wolfgang M. Neumann, Chairman of ITP’s Governing Council), Fran Hughes has been appointed ITP Director, effective October 1, 2015. Confirming the appointment, Business in the Community’s Director of Environment and Market Solutions Stephen Farrant said, “Fran is a long-standing champion for responsible tourism. Her passion for ITP’s unique role, her knowledge of the industry and the key issues, coupled with her irrepressible enthusiasm and determination make her a natural for this appointment.” Before joining ITP as Head of Programmes in early 2012, Fran worked for CTS Horizons, Explore Worldwide, The Travel Foundation and as an independent sustainable tourism consultant.
AUSTIN, TEXAS—Global hospitality association Hospitality Financial and Technology Professionals (HFTP) is adding to its successful community giving efforts with HFTP Helps. The first portion of the program, HITEC Helps, first held this year in Austin, Texas to support the United Way for Greater Austin during the Hospitality Industry Technology Exposition & Conference (HITEC) raised over $15,000 in support of the Austin area’s Memorial Day flood victims.
LOS ANGELES—The Conrad N. Hilton Foundation, one of the world’s leading foundations working to improve the lives of disadvantaged and vulnerable people throughout the world, announced a $2 million commitment to launch The Hilton Prize Coalition. This new grant will formalize the unique coalition comprised of many of the first 19 Hilton Humanitarian Prize-winning organizations and kick-start the implementation of two new signature initiatives: the Hilton Prize Laureates Fellowship Program, designed to inspire a new generation of humanitarian leaders, and the Disaster Resiliency and Response Program, created to help Prize laureates combine forces to leverage their work partnerships, and to improve services and programs in the field. In addition, the Foundation announced that the monetary award for the Hilton Humanitarian Prize, the world’s largest humanitarian prize for nonprofits, is being increased from $1.5 million to $2 million to commemorate its 20th Hilton Humanitarian Prize laureate, which will be announced in New York City on October 14. Each year, the Foundation reviews hundreds of nominations for notable nonprofit organizations from across the globe.
HONG KONG—Burba Hotel Network, Horwath HTL, and Stiles Capital Events, co-hosts and organizers of the annual Hotel Investment Conference Asia Pacific (HICAP), announced the winners for the HICAP 2015 Sustainable Hotel Awards. The 26th annual HICAP will be held October 14 to 16, 2015 at the InterContinental Hong Kong.
ITHACA, N.Y.—In the wake of the settlement for the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, a new report from the Center for Hospitality Research (CHR) at Cornell University chronicles the communication factors that led to canceled travel plans and poor regard for BP as a corporation. The report, “How the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill Damaged the Environment, the Travel Industry, and Corporate Reputations,” by Alex Susskind, Mark Bonn, and Benjamin Lawrence, is available at no charge from the CHR.
EAGLE BEACH, ARUBA—Bucuti & Tara Beach Resort continues to expand its green initiatives with its new LEED Silver certification. Known as the Caribbean property with the most sustainability certifications, Bucuti’s new LEED designation is from the Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED) rating system, developed by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), the world’s foremost program for buildings, homes and communities that are designed, constructed, maintained and operated for improved environmental and human health performance. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), January through July 2015 was the warmest seven months in recordkeeping history and 2015 is on track to be the hottest year ever recorded. Even a fraction of a degree average temperature change creates warmer oceans and rising sea levels that can be devastating for sea-level Caribbean islands like Aruba.
LAS VEGAS—MGM Resorts International employees have pledged more than $6 million this year to The MGM Resorts Foundation to support 1,400 nonprofit organizations and programs serving the resort company’s host communities in Nevada, Michigan and Mississippi, as well as other regional and national nonprofit organizations.
CHENGDU—China’s Six Senses Qing Cheng Mountain is going the extra mile with conservation and environmental responsibility. The resort, which opened August 1, incorporates all the Six Senses sustainability benchmarks for which the group is recognized and has now taken a step further with the introduction of a Tesla Model S electric vehicle for airport transfers. As the first hotel in Chengdu to offer such a sustainable experience, it is a testament to the eco-friendly initiatives that drive Six Senses. The vehicle, which accommodates three to four passengers and offers generous luggage capacity, travels up to 310 miles (500 kilometers) on a single charge from a standard power outlet. Using the Tesla Supercharge system, the vehicle can be fully charged in less than one hour. A guest’s arrival experience is also enhanced with the addition of the vehicle’s all-glass panoramic roof constructed from lightweight safety glass, which gives the feel of a convertible yet with total protection from the elements. In the setting of Six Senses Qing Cheng Mountain, this feature is important.
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