The hospitality industry has seen significant change as green initiatives have taken a more prominent role in the consciousness of guests. Hotel management is now held accountable to sustainability standards.
Many hotels worldwide practicing sustainability are seeing the benefits of these practices in both the short and long term basis as some green initiatives do not need high capital cost but require full commitment.
Being green is to develop projects that protect and enhance the environment by adapting to the natural environment instead of just building on it. This will draw guests who are conscious of their surroundings, the environment, the landscape and the local community.
Green initiatives are integral to success as demand for sustainability is growing among guests due to concerns for global warming, urbanisation and differences in how generations perceive the world. By connecting through a human experience guests will be more likely to use water responsibly or are aware where their food comes from.
The key is that all generations are interested in eco travelling to some extent and implementing sustainable measures has numerous benefits:
Changes in preferences
The travel industry has changed with generational shifts and digitalisation, so you can tap into guests’ preferences by offering eco-friendly options. Apart from consumers interested in more conscious travelling, more business travellers are opting to keep conferences and meetings in eco-friendly venues.
The world’s cities are growing rapidly and sustainable travel offers experiences in nature for city dwellers and most importantly in a clean environment.
Cost is always a driving factor and reducing operating costs and introducing efficiency strategies provides a compelling incentive for hotel management. Many hoteliers now employ a variety of strategies to reduce, reuse, and recycle waste. Other emerging areas include sustainable procurement, indoor environmental quality and staff training programmes.
There’s still time to become a market leader in your own hotel niche. Not only do you tap into the growing demand for greener alternatives, you also get a competitive advantage. By positioning yourself as the green alternative, the advantage is yours for years to come.
Loyalty to a brand depends on shared values with the business and by incorporating sustainable values as a core part of the brand you can win loyal customers who come back for more and refer your hotel to their friends.
Many governments have a variety of economic incentives to encourage the development of environmental retrofits and the construction of green buildings. These benefits include tax write-offs, financial grants, insurance premium discounts and expedited regulatory permitting.
Current environmental regulations targeted toward the hotel sector are largely focused on facility operations such as storm-water management, hazardous materials handling, environmental health and safety.
Resort and hotel management understand that investments in environmental technology can have a direct positive impact on guest experience. Guests want to stay at properties that don’t feel like hotels, they want an “at-home” feeling. Lighting, furnishings and environment combine to leave a lasting impression on guests.
Choosing to work with the right architect and hotel interior designer who share the same goals of sustainability is the key to success. Using the correct materials and finishes will enable the property to achieve the maximum level of sustainability.
Major hotels have incorporated some level of sustainability into their brand definition to boost image. Several brands have repositioned to cater to a younger generation of environmentally and socially active customers.
Implementing a sustainable corporate culture can provide a distinct advantage in terms of attracting and retaining talent as a company’s commitment to sustainability is top of mind for employees. The best way to emphasise sustainability is through the staff enhancing guest experiences.