We’ve traveled through the United States, Europe, and Asia looking at the most gorgeous of green getaways. These green hotels and resorts provide eco-consciousness without sparing a drop of luxury. And while it’s always good to dream big and splurge at times, we wanted to recognize the more affordable, eco-friendly hotel chains.
Starwood hotels have earned an eco-friendly reputation, but leading the way is their Element brand. All Element hotels are either LEED certified or committed to pursuing this certification. Going green starts with the infrastructure at these hotels. Material used to build the roof reflects heat to lower energy demands from cooling systems. Also, optimizing their air conditioning, heating, and ventilating systems cuts their energy consumption and puts less pressure on the ozone layer.
The products they use inside of their hotels also contribute to reducing threats to the environment. To reduce energy and waste, Energy Star appliances are used in the guest rooms and LED and CFL light bulbs are used in the hotels. The paints, carpet, and furniture used are eco-friendly and don’t sacrifice the comfort of their guests.
From complimentary rental bikes to priority parking for those driving hybrid vehicles, Element hotels make it both easy and rewarding to maintain your eco-conscious lifestyle on the road. To read more about Element’s eco-accommodations visit their website.
The Hyatt is another chain that has made a commitment to eco-friendly lodging. They began making their eco-efforts a few years back and continue to make their hotels greener and greener. Setting the bar high for the rest of their hotels is Hyatt at Olive 8 in Seattle. And as the first LEED hotel in Seattle it also sets the standard for sustainable lodging in the city. During construction of this hotel more than 95 percent of waste was diverted from going to the landfill, and the eco-consciousness doesn’t stop there.
The plant-covered living rooftop not only symbolizes sustainability, but helps to reduce storm water runoff and insulate the hotel. In the rooms, watt-stopper technology helps to avoid wasted energy. To activate energy flow all you have to do is insert your key card in the slot by the door, and when you leave, remove your key and energy will be cut off. Rooms are also equipped with dual-flush toilets and low consumption showerheads to make going green mindless for guests.
To learn more about the Hyatt’s eco-features visit their website.
Marriot is dedicated to reducing their footprint, and their history and future goals prove that. Working in close partnership with reputable environmental building associations, this chain is able to empower its development partners to build with sustainability in mind. In fact, Marriot was the first major hotel company in the U.S. to design and build a LEED certified hotel back in 2005. Today, the chain has 106 LEED-registered and 31 LEED-certified hotels.
And of course, their hotels cover all the basic yet crucial little things that cut a lot of waste: low-energy light bulbs, low consumption showerheads, recycled key cards and pens, biodegradable laundry bags, and more.
From the hotels to corporate offices, Marriot takes action to improve energy efficiency, conserve water, and support projects that reduce deforestation. To learn more about their major eco-plans visit their website.