Green is no longer just a fad for the hospitality sector, the industry is growing rapidly and as a large consumer of resources, especially water and energy, green sustainable technology is high on the agenda.
In an effort to go green and also involve environmentally conscious guests in their initiative, a hotel in Denmark invites guests to pedal stationery bikes that generate energy; in return, guests receive a free meal in the hotel's restaurant.
It is also common for hotels to change linen every two days, albeit with the consent of guests, and others have gone ‘zero garbage' with vermicomposting, recycling and using biodegradable products. Niche hotels have also taken their green initiative a step further and offer guests organically grown foods.
Some would argue that much of the pressure to go ‘green' has come from environmentally sensitive guests who are growing in number, and favour eco-friendly hotels to energy guzzlers. Interestingly, this has worked in favour of the environment.
Today, green initiatives which were once the USP of luxury hotel segment has spread across the industry and hotels of all sizes are adopting environmentally friendly practices – right from sourcing local construction material to leveraging technology to reduce energy use.Are You Leveraging Green Yet?
There are of course numerous ways a hotel property can go green. Depending on need and budget, one can choose from a range of options and technologies.
For example, to curb energy consumption, some hotels use wireless controllers that control the Key Card, lighting and air conditioning in rooms. Lights and other devices in the room automatically turn off when guests leaves, and adjust to optimal levels when the guest returns. The device requires no additional wiring, saves energy, and does not add numbers to operating costs.
Hotels in the US use a technology powered system for heating which starts up when a guest enters a room, and turns down when they leave. Hotels are also implementing green technology in-house like compact hot water distribution systems that allow hot water to reach end users faster; high performance fireplaces that eliminate air leakages; and dual-flush toilets that use less water than standard toilets.
Other ‘green' technologies include enhanced air ventilation provided by an air-to-air heat exchanger that supplies fresh air indoors and exhaust timers on bathroom exhaust fans.Costs V/S Long-Term Benefits
While energy-efficient equipment may be costlier both in terms of installation and capital costs; the hospitality industry is acknowledging the long term benefits to be reaped in terms of reduced maintenance and energy saving, especially when energy costs are escalating.
With technology constantly improving and becoming cost effective, initiatives that seemed too expensive just a short while earlier are now within reach of most hotels. In some countries, there are also government disincentives for over-consumption of water and energy.
Numerous hotels are looking to leverage their choices for solar energy, LED lighting, water recycling and others as corporate social responsibility initiatives and showcase them to both industry and guests.
The hospitality industry is grappling with issues of competition, tighter profit margins, discerning guests and reduced disposable income among patrons. In such a scenario, hotels are employing lean management principles, making business decisions with long term perspective and of course keeping costs in check, green technology, is thus an inevitable choice.Established in 1987, IDS Softwares Pvt. Ltd. is Asia's largest dedicated provider of integrated, full-service enterprise property management software for the hospitality and leisure industry. Powered by 24 years of experience and enabled by a vibrant mix of domain experts from the hospitality and technology spheres, IDS designs, develops, markets and maintains a comprehensive range of information management systems for various hospitality businesses including hotels, restaurants, clubs and resorts.We help hospitality professionals focus on providing efficient service by developing strategically sound, user-friendly software, packed with thoughtful details to enable higher productivity and greater profitability. www.idsnext.com