NATIONAL REPORT—As reported in Green Lodging News earlier this year, a number of suppliers are making it increasingly easy to offer filtered water to guests through water bottle filling stations. These stations, connected to a water supply, allow one to eliminate plastic bottle waste and even create a new revenue stream through the sale of reusable bottles. Making the location of water dispensing easier, several suppliers are now offering atmospheric water generators. These water dispensers need no water supply connection because they pull water from the air before filtering it for guests. Technology varies per supplier with some even offering bottling machines for on-site water bottling.
The advantages to atmospheric water generation are many. Machines can be placed anywhere there is a 110 volt connection. Solar powered “cordless” versions are also available. The machines do not pull water from sources that may be limited due to drought or other environmental conditions. There is no plastic bottle waste or recycling of plastic bottles. Storage of plastic bottles and the labor involved in moving them is eliminated. Water quality is impeccable and the product can be sold to guests or offered as a no-cost amenity.
British Columbia-based Aqua Air 247 Inc. has teamed up with Element Four Technologies Inc. to create the Atmospheric Water Generator Machine. “The machine has a four-stage filtration system with energy consumption that is the lowest available,” says Roland Nadon, Director of Sales and Marketing for Aqua Air 247 Inc. The Atmospheric Water Generator Machine, which holds 90 liters of water, dispenses reusable/refillable water bottles. The bottles come in a variety of sizes but do not exceed 600 ml.
“Each guest receives a custom printed, reusable, refillable souvenir from you to use at your property and they can take it home with them,” Nadon says.
Alkaline Water Option
The machine can produce enough water for up to 120 to 160 500 ml bottles each day. The machine comes with an alkaline water option and promotional 24″ digital screen to promote on-site events and advertisements. Nadon says the Atmospheric Water Generator Machine works best in environments with at least 40 to 45 percent humidity and up.
The Atmospheric Water Generator Machine can accept credit cards, cash, room key or be set up with no charge system on it.
“We will work with you to strategically place our machines throughout your property to ensure there is enough filling stations to accommodate all your guests’ drinking needs,” Nadon says.
Aqua Air 247 Inc. maintains and services its machines and can monitor them remotely. Nadon says the machines can save an average resort $8,000 to $10,000 per month and add $100,000 to $120,000 to the bottom line each year.
Aqua Air 247 Inc. expects to roll out its machines this fall.
Many Options from Generation Water
Australia-based Generation Water offers dispensing systems that pull moisture from the air and use advanced carbon and ultraviolet light filters to remove any impurities or contaminants before being treated with minerals to produce alkaline water. The production capacity of Generation Water’s solutions range from 32 liters per day, an ideal replacement for traditional water coolers, all the way up to full turnkey solutions which produce and bottle between 100 and 10,000+ liters of the highest quality drinking water per day. Generation Water can bottle still or carbonated water in one’s choice of custom labeled, glass bottles.
According to Ryan Kohler, Managing Director of Generation Water, using his company’s solutions, the average cost of producing a 500 ml bottle of the highest quality still/carbonated water in a glass bottle with branding is less than $.09. This is possible due to the fact that Generation Water collects, sanitizes and reuses the glass bottles, further reducing waste. “Our solutions use 78 percent less energy to produce a liter of drinking water, by comparison to traditional bottled drinking water,” Kohler says.
Kohler says Generation Water provides systems that are strategically placed to be convenient for staff and guests. Location is important to ensure optimal air flow. Air flow is important to ensure that the air entering the solution has a high water vapor content, rather than recycling the dry air that has already been processed.
“We have deployed a number of our smaller AW3 units into hotels to replace their existing water coolers,” Kohler says. “This reduces the need to constantly have to replace the water bottles and also reduces the costs associated with purchasing these bottles and having them delivered.”
Kohler says all maintenance, cleaning and operation of the solution is included as part of the service his company provides. This includes the regular testing of the water provided, both on site and by independent laboratories, as well as regular reporting of supply metrics back to hotel management (including ROI reports).
At last fall’s HX: The Hotel Experience in New York, Florida-based Atmospheric Water Solutions, Inc., featured its air to water generators. The AquaBoy Pro II processes moisture from the air through a multi-step filtration system. Produced is purified water with no chlorine, fluoride, or heavy metals present. The AquaBoy Pro II makes up to two to five gallons per day. Atmospheric Water Solutions, Inc. also offers Boomerang high-capacity bottling machines that produce up to 2,000 bottles per eight hour day and five sizes of AquaBoy water generators that produce up to 5,000 gallons per day.
Glenn Hasek can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.