I attended my first trade show in several years this past week—HX: The Hotel Experience and Boutique Design New York (BDNY). Both shows were held at the Javits Center in New York City. While smaller than before the era of Covid, the two shows impressed me greatly with their selection of exhibitors. Almost everywhere I turned, there was an exhibitor with a sustainability story to tell. Sometimes the company’s commitment was not necessarily seen in the product itself but in how it was made and the culture of the company. There were also numerous speaker presentations on the show floor on topics related to sustainability and wellness. If you skipped the show this time, I highly recommend attending/exhibiting next year.
I walked the entire show floor that had hundreds of exhibitors. Sometimes a booth was so crowded I had to pass it by, but I did manage to speak with a lot of exhibitors and many of their products and services are mentioned in my story on Green Lodging News.
What trends did I see? Certainly, one was innovating away from the single-use plastic bottle for amenities. This has been going on for years and I wrote about two companies doing cool things in my column last week. At the show, Allegrini North America introduced its DPlanet, plastic-free, solid cosmetics line. A shampoo amenity, for example, is available in tablet form. Guests simply crush the tablet, add water, and shampoo their hair. Each tablet is wrapped in recycled and recyclable paper.
GO Mouthwash was at the show with its single-serve mouthwash, body lotion, shampoo/conditioner, and body wash. Its partnership with TerraCycle supports TerraCycle’s upcycling efforts, turning the single-use sachets into bags, office supplies, décor, and more.
Green wall companies certainly had a presence. Naturalist displayed its turnkey maintenance free green wall installations with sound absorbing properties. The walls do not require soil, sunlight, or water. Pandemic Design Studio introduced The Node Collection, the only modular ceramic wall mounted planter system available that infuses a sculptural element into the green wall concept. Each ceramic piece is hung like a picture, on a single screw. The ceramic plant holders come in five standard colors and five modular sizes. UpScapers featured its faux green walls. The company also offers living walls, green roofs, planters, and more.
Upcycled Marine Plastics
Furniture makers emphasized the sustainability of the wood in their products and in the realm of textiles and fabrics there were numerous innovations. Valley Forge Fabrics, for example, unveiled its new SEAQUAL MARINE PLASTIC collection as part of the company’s continued commitment to sustainability. Nine marine-inspired patterns come in an array of colors and textures. Nani Marquina introduced its Re-Rug collection made, in part, from wool leftovers accumulated by its suppliers. The collection is composed of 50 percent virgin wool and 50 percent reused wool.
Just as our industry is working to eliminate the single-use amenity bottle, so too is it working to eliminate single-use plastic water bottles. At HX, Sapphire Beverages introduced its water in easy-to-recycle aluminum containers. The water, branded BluWave and Brita, is available in 12-, 16-, 18- and 25-ounce containers.
Because BDNY comprises most of the HX/BDNY show, most of the exhibitors were in some way connected to design but there certainly were opportunities to chat with companies to learn about energy- and water-saving opportunities.
I stopped by the Verdant booth and learned that it, as part of Emerson Electric Co., was sold in late October when private equity funds managed by Blackstone purchased a majority stake in Emerson’s Climate Technologies business. This will open the door for guestroom energy management expert Verdant to Blackstone’s many real estate assets. The value of Blackstone’s global real estate portfolio: $565 billion.
In addition, Axxess Industries was back with its Smart Hotel products ranging from lighting controls to motion sensors to touch thermostats and linear LED lights.
JACLO: Faucets Need Not be Boring
JACLO displayed its touchless, sensor faucet in a wide range of colors to add pop to any public restroom area—water savings, too. Speakman Co. was also in attendance with its water-saving shower heads, sensor faucets, and more.
I could go on and on about the companies and products at the shows but one of the biggest lessons for me this year was that each year it is getting easier to be innovative and sustainable without sacrificing good, cutting-edge design.
Did you attend HX or BDNY? I would love to learn your thoughts about the shows. I can be reached at email@example.com.
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