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ALICE SPRINGS, AUSTRALIA—The Crowne Plaza Alice Springs hotel set a new benchmark for Australia’s business sector and hotel industry when it switched on the largest building-mounted solar photovoltaic (PV) system in the Southern Hemisphere and began its $50,000 in-house energy efficiency program. The $3.3 million PV installation will reduce the hotel’s energy consumption by 40 to 80 percent.
BETHESDA, MD.—In a move to help improve the climate, Marriott International, Inc. is launching a new way for guests to “green” their hotel stays. Now, when guests book rooms on Marriott’s website, they can offset the carbon generated during their stay for as little as $10, or $1/day for 10 days. As part of Spirit To Preserve, Marriott’s five-point environmental strategy, guests can contribute to a Brazilian rainforest preservation fund already supported with a $2 million commitment by the company. “Conserving rainforests—the lungs of the Earth—is one of the most important things we can do to improve the climate,” says chief financial officer Arne Sorenson, who co-chairs Marriott’s Executive Green Council.
NEWPORT BEACH, CALIF.—A new company, Cozy Green, is providing new life to old hotel towels and linens. Cozy Green utilizes spent towels and linens to create logo recognized, contemporary retail products. Ideally, the company seeks towels with logos on them, and then “upcycles” them to new branded product for their hotel partners.
ROCKVILLE, MD—Clean Currents, LLC announced that it has successfully brokered an arrangement with the Legacy Hotel and Conference Centre to switch 100 percent of its electricity consumption to wind power in an effort to reduce dangerous greenhouse gas emissions and to encourage energy independence.
TORONTO—Fairmont Hotels & Resorts has announced an extension of its brandwide Green Cuisine program to include sustainable seafood choices in support of a global effort to conserve precious marine species. As the latest environmental initiative undertaken by the brand, Fairmont’s hotels and resorts worldwide will remove threatened fish species like Chilean Sea Bass and Bluefin Tuna from their restaurant menus and will also align themselves locally with reputable seafood watch organizations, ensuring guests continue to be provided with a comprehensive selection of sustainable seafood choices. By spring 2009, Fairmont’s seafood purchases will be made with the guidance and consultation of these well-respected groups and in consortium with local suppliers.
MONTEREY, CALIF.—Security National Guaranty (SNG) announced plans to develop the greenest ecoresort in the world on the Monterey Peninsula. To be located on a degraded former sand mining site, Monterey Bay Shores Ecoresort will be an environmentally friendly development that will provide visitors, tourists and residents with an ideal green living environment.
ANAHEIM, CALIF.—As part of its ongoing commitment to the environment, Disneyland Resort announced two innovative environmental initiatives to reduce carbon dioxide emissions. The resort has begun using compressed natural gas to fuel its guest trams and recycled cooking oil to power its Disneyland Railroad steam trains and Mark Twain riverboat. “These initiatives demonstrate Disneyland Resort’s ongoing commitment to balancing environmental stewardship throughout our operations,” said Michael O’Grattan, senior vice president of resort operations. “These are just a few steps in our ongoing journey to reduce Disneyland Resort’s environmental footprint.”
SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, CALIF.—What was once a tired Days Inn here has been transformed into a vibrant resort that blends modern architecture with a “Rustic-Zen” feel. Owned by G8 Partners, 968 Park Spa Resort features items such as organic linens, towels and duvets, organic food and wines, and a day spa that offers treatments heavy on homemade ingredients.
ROBBINSVILLE, N.J.—EcoGreenHotel has been contracted by the Hampton Inn in Easton, Pa., to establish a sustainability program. The Hampton Inn, managed by Lorrie Miller, has chosen to begin its green hotel initiative with EcoGreenHotel’s “Sustainability Support Program.”
MCLEAN, VA.—The Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association International (HSMAI) and Tourism Cares have partnered to recognize sustainability initiatives in the travel industry with a new award. The first-ever Tourism Cares Sustainability Award will be presented at the HSMAI Adrian Awards Gala, January 26, 2009, at the Marriott Marquis in New York City. The Tourism Cares award is a new addition to HSMAI’s annual Adrian Awards, a competition that honors the “best of the best” in travel and hospitality marketing in the categories of advertising, public relations and web marketing. “Tourism Cares is pleased and proud to honor those who epitomize sustainable practices in their hospitality and tourism businesses,” said Bruce Beckham, executive director of Tourism Cares.
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