First carbon neutral five star hotel to open in Menorca

SPAIN: Menorca will have its first carbon neutral five star hotel at the end of this month.

SPAIN: Menorca will have its first carbon neutral five star hotel at the end of this month.

The  Villa Le Blanc By Gran Meliá, will open at the end of July and is the latest opening for the Leading Hotels of the World.

It’s Gran Melia’s first carbon neutral property out of the 15 in its portfolio.

The hotel aims to achieve its carbon neutral status by incorporating facilities and technologies that will enable it to reduce its scope 1 and 2 emissions by 87 per cent. Carbon neutral status does not include the emissions from the building, renovating or construction of a building, known as embodied carbon.

The hotel will also look at alternatives to offset the remaining emissions ensuring when it is operating it keeps its carbon neutral status (net zero). The renovation included installing biomass boilers, photovoltaic solar panels and using geothermal energy for condensation. This is where engineered geothermal systems (EGS) can use the carbon dioxide from condensation as a heat extraction fluid instead of using water, making it much more environmentally friendly.

The building will feature a SATE External Thermal Insulation System, which is when buildings are thermally and acoustically insulated from the outside.

The building will also use a circular water system so that grey water and rain water can be re-purposed, reducing the amount of water being used.

The hotel was previously a Sol Beach House Hotel but has been renovated by architect Alvaro Sans to include 159 rooms including a Penthouse Suite, a Swim-Up Master Suite and a Presidential Suite. 

The island of Menorca was declared a Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO in 1993.

Gabriel Escarrer, vice president and CEO of Meliá said: “Villa Le Blanc is a dream come true for our company. A project like this allows us to move forward towards hotel decarbonisation. It is also in such a special place as the Biosphere Reserve of Menorca, making it one of the most tangible results of our commitment to a hotel model based on excellence, responsibility and sustainability.”

The Villa Le Blanc Hotel is located on Santo Tomás Beach on the Migjorn coast, halfway between Mahón and Ciutadella. 

Image credit: Gran Melia

www.melia.com

Palladium Hotel Group ups sustainable energy goals

SPAIN: Spanish group The Palladium Hotel Group is hoping to showcase its sustainability efforts as it focuses on achieving its renewable energy goals this year.

SPAIN: Spanish group The Palladium Hotel Group is hoping to showcase its sustainability efforts as it focuses on achieving its renewable energy goals this year.

Currently 100 per cent all of the energy consumed in the group’s Spanish properties comes from renewable sources – either from guaranteed origin or the hotels’ photovoltaic (solar) panels. 

The group has installed 1,327 solar panels in Ushuaïa Ibiza Beach Hotel, Hard Rock Hotel Ibiza (pictured above from Palladium Hotel Group), Grand Palladium Palace Ibiza Resort & Spa and Grand Palladium White Island Resort & Spa. 

The solar panels create power up to 600 kWp and can produce 746,000 kW, avoiding 186,000 kg of CO2 emissions per year.

In the future, in order to achieve its sustainability goals the group plans to make use of other sustainable sources, including natural gas, thermal recovery systems and geothermal energy. Energy use for the rest of the portfolio in the rest of Spain, Italy, Mexico, the Dominican Republic, Jamaica, and Brazil hits 20 per cent for a guarantee of renewable origin, but Palladium Palace Hotel Group wants that figure to reach 50 per cent this year.

A recent report by Booking.com cited how travellers are looking for more sustainable accommodation options when they travel including more than 50 per cent of travellers from the UK.

It will do this by trying other methods of sustainable energy and continue to be proactive in other sustainability goals by focusing on waste management, the reduction of single-use plastics, and support for local products.

The Spanish hotel chain operates 41 hotels under nine different brands: TRS Hotels, Grand Palladium Hotels & Resorts, Palladium Hotels, Palladium Boutique Hotels, Fiesta Hotels & Resorts, Ushuaïa Unexpected Hotels, Only You Hotels, Bless Collection Hotels and the Hard Rock Hotels Brand under licence with three hotels in Ibiza Tenerife and Marbella.

 Palladium Hotel Group has achieved various different certifications of sustainability from different standardisation companies across the world and its portfolio, including those by ReThink Hotel Association, EarthCheck Silver and Platinum and Blue Flag awards.

More than half of UK travellers want sustainable accommodation

Booking.com has released its 2022 Sustainability Report with insight from more than 30,000 travellers from 32 countries.

Booking.com has released its 2022 Sustainability Report with insight from more than 30,000 travellers from 32 countries.

The new research highlights that for many people the impact of their trip on the environment does feature highly on their considerations when booking.

57 per cent of travellers from the UK wanted to travel more sustainably in the next year, which is a 27 per cent increase on last year’s response.

 71 per cent of travellers said that sustainable travel is important to them, and almost half of all respondents (42 per cent) cited that recent news about climate change has influenced them to make more sustainable travel choices. 

To that end, a quarter of UK travellers say that the sustainability efforts of accommodations and transport providers play a strong role in their property and transport decisions respectively and 55 per cent of travellers say they would be more likely to choose a sustainable accommodation – whether they were looking specifically for one or not.

Awareness and visibility of more sustainable stays continues, with a quarter of travellers confirming they have seen a sustainable accommodation on an online travel site over the past year and 29 per cent indicating that they actively look for information on the sustainability efforts of a property before they book. 

Even more encouraging 33 per cent of travellers responded to say they have stayed in a sustainable accommodation over the past year. Of those who have experienced a more sustainable stay in the past 12 months, the reasons for selecting one vary:

  • 31 per cent said they chose it to help reduce their impact on the environment 
  • Over a fifth (21 per cent) wanted to have a more locally relevant experience 
  • 24 per cent believe sustainable properties treat the community better 

But while 62 per cent of travellers want to stay in a sustainable property at least once this year, those who didn’t manage it last year said it was because of lack of awareness. 27 per cent said they didn’t know sustainable accommodation existed (although last year was lower with 30 per cent not knowing about the greener options).

However although people seem more interested in staying at eco options, nearly two thirds (62 per cent) admit that they don’t actively look for the sustainability efforts of a property before they book, unless the information is easy to find.

With more than 100,000 properties globally now being recognised for their sustainability efforts with a Travel Sustainable badge on Booking.com, the company has also further expanded the number of third-party certifications and labels that automatically qualify accommodations to receive it.

In addition to those officially approved by the Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC), Green Tourism and the EU Ecolabel, this now also includes Green Seal, Nordic Swan Ecolabel, Green Hospitality Ecolabel, Ibex Fairstay, Fair Trade Tourism, LEED and Edge.

Booking.com remained carbon neutral in its operations in 2021 and transitioned to 100 per cent renewable electricity towards the end of 2021, an important step as part of the company’s contribution to Booking Holdings’ recently released Climate Action Plan

The first of its kind for any global online travel company, its Climate Action Plan functions as a strategic framework for how Booking Holdings intends to make its operations, services and the travel industry more sustainable. 

In line with the definitions and measurements established by the Science Based Targets Initiative, the Climate Action Plan includes ambitious targets that aim to help the company achieve a 95 per cent reduction in scope 1 and 2 emissions by the end of 2030, 50 per cent reduction in scope 3 emissions by 2030, and net-zero emissions by 2040.

Glenn Fogel, CEO of Booking.com said: “With increased pressure on our natural resources and the undeniable impact our way of life is having on the environment, we are 100 per cent committed to leading the industry in charting a more mindful and responsible course for the future of travel. We have ambitious goals for what we want to achieve, but together with our partners across the industry and the passion of our innovative employees, we can continue to make it easier for everyone to experience the world in a more mindful and responsible way. We believe that travel is and should remain a powerful force for good, bringing enhanced cultural understanding, socio-economic opportunities for countless communities and the potential to help rejuvenate and protect our planet for the long term.”

Radisson RED has just opened a sustainable hotel in Oslo, Norway.

bookingholdings.com/sustainability.

Radisson RED opens sustainable design hotel in Oslo

NORWAY: Radisson Hotel Group has opened a sustainably certified hotel in the heart of Norway’s capital.

NORWAY: Radisson Hotel Group has opened a sustainably certified hotel in the heart of Norway’s capital.

The hotel has been certified by BREEAM and has been given an Excellent rating.

BREEAM, one of the world’s leading science-based systems to determine the sustainability of buildings considers a building’s low impact design and carbon emissions, forward-thinking design features for climate change, and ecological value and biodiversity protection. 

The rating was given for several reasons including the hotel’s A class energy rating, meaning its energy level will not exceed 140 Kwh/sqm, and it uses rainfall catchers to water its rooftop garden. 

Tom Flanagan Karttunen, area senior vice president, Northern & Western Europe at Radisson Hotel Group said: “This is the perfect location for our second Radisson RED property in Norway, following the opening of Radisson RED Oslo Airport earlier this year. Radisson RED’s creative approach works in harmony with Økern Portal’s green spaces and sustainable initiatives, and offers the best city views from its rooftop bar and outdoor terrace.”

The Radisson RED Oslo Økern is just 15 minutes from Oslo’s Central train station in a sustainably focussed business neighbourhood, Økern Portal, which includes Norway’s largest rooftop garden.

The Økern Portal community has its own energy wells that produce 90 per cent  of the heating for the entire development.

The 204 room hotel has playful artistic design and is inspired by fashion, music and art. There are also 13 meetings rooms with the largest able to host 120 people.

It’s the second Radisson RED hotel in the country after the opening of Radisson RED Airport earlier this year.

1 Hotels to open sustainable Nashville property this month

US: 1 Hotels, the luxury eco-conscious hotel group is opening its Nashville poverty this month hot on the heels of its San Francisco site.

US: 1 Hotels, the luxury eco-conscious hotel group is opening its Nashville poverty this month hot on the heels of its San Francisco site.

The Nashville property is built on a brownfield site and will feature a living wall cladding the facade with 56,000 plants.

1 Hotels takes sustainability seriously with each US location certified carbon neutral and 100 per cent LEED Certified (the most recognized sustainable building rating system in the world). 

To achieve these levels the design process is key and 1 Hotels has repurposed more than 50 per cent of construction waste materials to create the hotel.

Other essentials are intelligent BMS systems (A BMS monitors, controls and reports on smart building technology systems) to control HVAC (heating ventilation and air con) and lighting systems and efficient water systems.

The group also has a partnership with Audi which offers guests use of their electric e-trons to explore the area.

The Nashville property opens this month.

1 Hotels is a US based group but its portfolio ranges across America and North America as well as four hotels in Europe and two in Asia Pacific.

Turkey welcomed its first carbon neutral hotel this month.