SEATTLE—Two Seattle area hotels have been saving money and the environment, thanks to a host of environmentally enhanced products from Green Suites International, a California-based supplier of environmental products and programs to the lodging industry.
“We’ve been using Green Suites’ EcoRoom products for more than two years at two of our hotels, and we know we’ve saved money and made some friends because of our environmentally sound practices,” says Howard Cohen, general manager of the Best Western Executive Inn and Best Western Loyal Inn, both in Seattle. “We are saving water and electricity, and keeping thousands of small bottles out of the waste stream.”
EcoRooms feature more than a dozen different environmental products including compact fluorescent light bulbs, low-flow showerheads and sink faucets, nightlights, digital thermostats, non-toxic cleaning chemicals, Nature’s Mist deodorizer, a linen reuse program, and lotion and liquid soap products dispensed from refillable containers in the shower and at the sink.
“The great thing about this program is that it does not cause any guest complaints,” Cohen says. “Guests don’t notice when they use the sink or flush the toilet that these are water-saving devices, because they work just as well as non-water saving fixtures. The same holds true with the biodegradable amenities and non-toxic cleaning chemicals.”
What they do notice, however, are the in-room recycling containers and the fact that there are no mini bottles of shampoo, conditioner, lotion or shower gel in the bathrooms. They also notice the linen reuse informational pieces, which ask guests who stay more than one night to consider reusing their towels and sheets to save water, energy and detergent. These products provide a full-court press on the guests’ environmental consciousness.
“Not polluting the Earth with all those shampoo and lotion bottles, and saving water and electricity are the right thing to do, in terms of the environment,” Cohen says. “You are saving money—smart money—and polluting less. Several of our guests have had positive things to say about our linen reuse program and the fact that we aren’t dumping all those little bottles in landfills. They are environmentally conscious and the EcoRooms program speaks to them in a positive way.”
He said the program is attractive for that reason and because it saves his hotels money. A pre-installation analysis showed that the two hotels, based on occupancy levels and the level of service and amenities they provide, would save about $1.70 per occupied guestroom, equaling nearly $100,000 per year in energy (gas and electricity), water, waste and labor while helping the regional ecology, according to Dan Bornholdt, president of Green Suites International.
“The two hotels are preventing more than 200,000 amenity packages annually from entering local landfills, and reducing water consumption by more than 2 million gallons,” he says. “In addition, the energy-efficient products eliminate more than 50 tons of air pollutants caused by coal-fired power plants.”
The hotel’s use of liquid soaps saves some labor in the housekeeping department, because there is no soap scum buildup in the sinks or showers, according to Cohen.
“The program makes guests more aware of things they can do to conserve resources and protect the environment,” Cohen says. “We hope they notice these principles and do the same thing in their homes. It’s about being responsible for your place in life.”
Green Suites International’s products and programs have saved 2,500 hotel customers more than $150 million in reduced energy, water, waste and labor, Bornholdt says. The company’s products are in 50 states and 45 countries.
“EcoRoom products are good for the guest, good for the earth and good for the hotel’s bottom line,” Bornholdt says. “The products are energy efficient, water efficient, waste reducing, non-toxic and biodegradable.”
He estimates that hotels using EcoRoom products will save 20 percent to 70 percent on the cost of amenities, 20 percent to 40 percent on water, 30 percent to 70 percent of energy, 10 percent on waste and 10 percent on labor. Instead of buying the amenities, hotels that opt for EcoRoom products pay Green Suites International a negotiated amount based on its number of occupied guestrooms. This means there is no capital expense to the hotel, it has a guaranteed cost per occupied room, and it only has to pay one invoice.
In addition to Best Western, Green Suites International supplies Hyatt Hotels and Resorts, InterContinental Hotels Group, Hilton Hotels & Resorts, Marriott International and U.S. Franchise Systems with its products.
For more information, contact Dan Bornholdt at firstname.lastname@example.org.