AMERICAN CANYON, CALIF.—Gaia Napa Valley Hotel and Spa—the United States’ first and only LEED Gold-certified hotel—has commissioned a 36-kilowatt solar project that produces electricity to help run the hotel. The system is projected to meet approximately 12 percent of the hotel’s annual energy needs and contributed two points toward the hotel’s LEED Gold certification.
An energy-usage panel in the hotel’s lobby shows exactly how much power is being generated by the solar system—and how much energy is being used by the hotel, minute by minute.
The Gaia project will generate 49,000 kWh of clean renewable energy annually, reflecting the priority that the Atman Hospitality Group, Inc. has placed on utilizing renewable energy and energy efficiency to promote environmentally responsible tourism.
“We are pleased to dedicate this solar facility at America’s—and the world’s—greenest hotel,” says Wen-I Chang, CEO and founder of Atman Hospitality Group, the organization that owns and operates the hotel. “Solar energy is one way we can help reduce our reliance on wasteful and polluting fossil fuels and help reduce global warming.”
First of Several Green Hotels
Chang’s hope is to build a series of resorts that will blend environmental consciousness with luxury and amenities for eco-tourists and visitors to California’s Napa Valley.
“The solar project at Gaia is a testament to the larger effort put forth by Chang to use design in practice to advocate environmentally-sensitive tourism,” says Erik Rothenberg, Managing Director for 3 Phases. “We congratulate Wen and the Atman Hospitality Group for executing on their vision to build this unique project.”
The cost of the system was partially offset by a rebate under Pacific Gas & Electric’s Self-Gen Incentive Program. California’s governor has been a leading advocate for the growth of the solar industry as well as the larger environmental movement in California.
The project, developed by California-based 3 Phases Energy Services, features Uni-solar amorphous silicon laminates mounted on standing seam metal roof pans. The system was installed by Energy Recommerce, Inc. (ERI), and includes ERI’s string-level performance monitoring system.