news & features


Second Annual Green Tourism Conference to Focus on Marketing & Food Service

MOUNTAINDALE, N.Y.—The Green Tourism Working Group announces the 2nd Annual 2015 Green Tourism Conference at the Woodloch Pines in Hawley, Pa., on April 14 and 15. The conference networks regional food service and lodging facilities, tourism agencies, recreational activity businesses and their “eco” product and service suppliers for two days of workshops, training and collaboration to grow tourism through the surging interest in “green” travel and regionally sourced and prepared dining. Last year’s event attracted over 200 participants from Wayne, Monroe, Pike and Carbon counties in Pennsylvania and Delaware, Greene, Orange, Sullivan and Ulster counties in New York, and from as far away as New Mexico. Tuesday begins with afternoon training from HospitalityGreen in Green Meetings, Green Lodgers, Food Service and Customer Service. The conference Reception and Opening Event follow in the evening. Wednesday starts with a breakfast presentation leading to roundtables focused on interactive marketing and food service experiences, hosted by national and regional experts with attendee participation. A Farm-to-Table Lunch presentation provides a mid-day break.

featured vendor video
Polly Products - Recycled Outdoor Furnishings Manufacturer Profile
Polly Products

Length: 3:43

Recycled plastic products, including benches and picnic tables--proudly made in the USA.

publisher's point of view
Earth Hour, Earth Day Present Opportunities to Educate, Inspire

In less than a month—March 28 from 8:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. local time—Earth Hour will take place around the world. The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) is the parent organization of Earth Hour. This year, the Earth Hour website is offering a guide for hotels interested in participating in the annual event. Be sure to check it out. At the core of any Earth Hour celebration is switching off or turning down the lights—without compromising guest or associate safety of course. Also key is creating an event or events around the act of switching off or dimming down the lights. Green Lodging News has reported on Earth Hour activities in the past—everything from “Cocktails by Candlelight” to entirely turning off exterior signage. Some companies have used Earth Hour as the kickoff for an entire week or month of Earth-inspired activities that include the celebration of Earth Day on April 22.

guest column
Is it Time to Stop Using Cleaning Chemicals?

If your hotel advertised that it is so green that it no longer uses cleaning chemicals at all to clean guestrooms, do you think potential guests would make reservations years in advance? Not care if cleaning chemicals, green or otherwise, are used or not? Not even consider making a reservation in your hotel property? If your answer is the last—not even consider making a reservation in your hotel—you are probably not alone. The concept of chemical free cleaning, as it is called, is still very new; however, don’t be surprised if it becomes more and more common and prevalent in years to come. So, what is chemical free cleaning? It can have slightly different meanings depending on who is defining it. But, it essentially refers to cleaning methods, procedures, or systems that leave surfaces looking clean as well as removing or eliminating germs and bacteria.

featured product
Experts Agree On Sterling's Sustainable Modular Mattress

Max H. Tucker, CHA, General Manager, Best Western Big America: “Sterling mattresses are an important part of our strategy for meeting guest comfort and working towards a more sustainable hotel operation.” Brian Keller, Director of Property Services, Oakwood Worldwide, LEED Green Associate: “One definite advantage is the concept of replacement components…this has been a great find for Oakwood.” The top three reasons buyers are choosing the Sterling Hospitality Sustainable Modular Mattress: 3) Shows guests you care about their comfort. 2) Reduces maintenance and replacement costs and downtime. 1) Reduces your carbon footprint. For more information, call (888) 281-2817 today!

green hotel focus
Virgin Hotels Chicago Renovated with Efficiency in Mind

CHICAGO—When Virgin Group opened its first hotel last month—the 250-room Virgin Hotels Chicago—what was not talked about much in the media was the green story behind the renovated historic Old Dearborn Bank Building at 203 N. Wabash Ave. Richard Branson, Virgin Group founder, and member of the B Team leaders who recently called for a global commitment to net-zero greenhouse-gas emissions by 2050, established a hotel brand with the goal of LEED Silver for each hotel. Virgin Hotels Chicago’s green story begins with its site selection. Rather than building new, Virgin Hotels chose a historic bank building and kept many of its features. The facade features rich, ornate designs including medieval characters, dragons, griffins, ducks, squirrels and more. About 80 percent of the building’s original lobby remains. The Oak Cigar Bar in the lobby is now used as the check-in desk where DIY kiosks are placed.

upcoming events
International Restaurant & Foodservice Show of New York
Jacob K. Javits Convention Center, New York

Sunday, March 08, 2015

BD West
San Diego Convention Center

Wednesday, April 08, 2015

American Resort Development Association Annual Convention
Orlando World Center Marriott

Sunday, April 12, 2015

personnel profile
St. Lucia Hotelier Karolin Troubetzkoy Named Chairman of Caribbean Alliance for Sustainable Tourism

ST. LUCIA—A prominent Caribbean hotelier, Karolin Troubetzkoy, has been appointed Chairman of the Caribbean Alliance for Sustainable Tourism (CAST). The appointment is the latest Caribbean tourism sector leadership role for Troubetzkoy, who serves as Executive Director of the storied Jade Mountain and Anse Chastanet resorts in Soufrière, St. Lucia. “It is with great honor that I accept this role of promoting responsible environmental and social management within the region’s hotel and tourism sector,” said Troubetzkoy, who will work alongside the recently appointed CAST Technical Director, Denaye Hinds, the Sustainability Director for OBMI—a leading Caribbean-based architectural and master planning firm. Troubetzkoy, who also serves as President of the St. Lucia Hotel and Tourism Assn. as well as First Vice President of the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Assn., paid tribute to the numerous sustainable tourism pioneers who laid the foundation of CAST.

blog post
Air Quality Researcher: ‘Green’ Does Not Always Mean Safe for Use
12 hours ago

One of the world’s leading researchers on air quality and what impacts it has just released the results of her latest study on volatile organic compounds (VOCs) emitted from 37 different products, such as air fresheners, cleaning products, laundry supplies, and personal care products, including those with certifications and claims of “green” and “organic”. Dr. Anne Steinemann, Professor of Civil Engineering, and the Chair of Sustainable Cities, from the Department of Infrastructure Engineering, Melbourne School of Engineering, found that common consumer products, including those marketed as “green”, “all-natural”, “non-toxic”, and “organic”, emit a range of compounds that could harm human health and air quality. The study, published in the journal Air Quality, Atmosphere & Health found 156 different VOCs emitted from the 37 products, with an average of 15 VOCs per product. Of these 156 VOCs, 42 are classified as toxic or hazardous under U.S. federal laws, and each product emitted at least one of these chemicals.

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