news & features


A Rising Tide Lifts All Buildings: New Design Considerations for Rising Sea Levels

BOSTON—Major weather events and climate changes are leading architects and developers to create interesting new responses to an evolving environment. Innovative ways of thinking about buildings and urban design will be necessary in some waterfront redevelopment projects—especially those integrated within existing urban infrastructure—contends Michael Liu, Principal at Boston-based architecture and master planning firm, The Architectural Team (TAT). Driven by building codes hoping to address rising sea levels and the reality of increasingly flood-prone neighborhoods, architects working in coastal areas or flood plains are often required to raise habitable space above street level. Recent TAT projects in Lynn, Salem, and East Boston, for example, were designed with their first floors seven to eight feet above the surrounding streets, even though many of the structures are several blocks from the water. As Liu points out, “Behind any new waterfront project must be the understanding that as sea levels rise, the conditions under which waterfronts and nearby areas presently exist will not be the same as the conditions we’ll see long-term, and periodically in the near future.”

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Lodging Industry Shows Leadership on Hen Welfare Issue

For most egg-laying hens, it is not an easy life. Raised on factory farms in wire cages, they typically have the space of an iPad to live on for 1.5 to two years—not enough space to do anything other than lay eggs. Josh Balk, Senior Food Policy Director, The Humane Society of the United States, told me that when it comes to animal cruelty, living conditions for egg-laying hens is the No. 1 concern. In case you missed it, earlier this month Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide announced plans to source 100 percent of its eggs from cage-free chickens across its supply chain by 2020. In an announcement regarding the change, Andrea Pinabell, Starwood’s Vice President of Sustainability, said, “Animal welfare is important to our customers and our company, and many of our hotels around the world already use cage-free eggs.” Balk says Starwood joins more than 60 other major companies that have made a commitment to transition to cage-free eggs. Among those companies are Hilton Worldwide, Marriott International, and Hyatt Hotels and Resorts.

guest column
Why Hotels are Switching (or Should Be) to LED Lighting

More than any other large properties, hotels and resorts can take advantage of the great benefits offered by LED lighting because these facilities have a fixed operating cost for heating/cooling and lighting in all their common areas. While the facility may not always be operating at full occupancy, all the lighting in their lobbies, hallways and other common areas are operating 24 hours a day, seven days a week. This makes these areas the best place to start either a retrofit or new installation project, as the Return on Investment (ROI) offers the quickest payback. An LED lamp or fixture will last 50,000 hours—that’s more than five years operating 24 hours a day, seven days a week before it requires changing. On the other hand, an incandescent lamp may only run 2,000 hours, which is less than two months operating 24/7. This means the incandescent lamps would need to be changed at least 24 times in the same five years as the LEDs. It’s not difficult to see why the LED alternatives offer a very good ROI.

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green hotel focus
Host Hotels & Resorts Opens New Axiom Hotel

SAN FRANCISCO—Host Hotels & Resorts, Inc. announces the opening of the new Axiom Hotel in San Francisco. Opening at the famed Cable Car turnaround at the nexus of historic Union Square and innovative Mid-Market, the boutique hotel offers 152 rooms and tech-forward amenities. Axiom Hotel is managed by Kokua Hospitality with design from New York City-based Stonehill & Taylor. As a LEED certified boutique hotel, Axiom has sustainability efforts that coincide with the green city of San Francisco. Convenient filtered ice and water stations on every guest floor are not only eco-friendly, but also allow guests unlimited and complimentary fresh water in lieu of purchasing bottled water. To limit paper waste, in-room dining can be ordered through the television, and every room features a recycling bin. The hotel’s guestrooms also feature a whisper quiet, high efficiency HVAC system.

upcoming events
Stay Green Forum
Hilton San Francisco Union Square

Wednesday, February 17, 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
How Will You Mark Earth Hour & Earth Day 2016?
2 days ago

Earth Hour and Earth Day are two occasions that have been marked by many hotel companies and individual hotels in years past. How will you be marking the occasions this year? This year, Earth Hour will be celebrated around the world on March 19 from 8:30 to 9:30 p.m. local time. The World Wildlife Federation has created a video that summarizes 2015 Earth Hour activities. Be sure to check it out. Last year lighting at more than 10,400 landmarks and monuments was turned off during Earth Hour. Wyndham Worldwide participated in Earth Hour by turning its lights down and encouraging energy conservation. Hilton hotels participated with candlelit dinners with low carbon menus and sustainable cocktails. Guests of The Fairmont Orchid, Hawaii celebrated Earth Hour by enjoying complimentary ocean-side stargazing, compliments of Stargaze Hawaii. In years past MGM Resorts International has dimmed lights at its resorts. Exterior lighting, rooftop signage, marquees and front features at the company’s major Strip resorts and Beau Rivage Resort and Casino in Biloxi, Miss. were turned off during the celebration.

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