Sustainability is an important component of sustainable business models, including in the hotel industry. Hotels have a significant impact on the environment and the community. More and more travellers are looking for eco-friendly hotels. In this blog post, we look at the steps hotels can take to reduce their environmental impact and meet the demands of their guests.

Why acting sustainable is important for the hotel industry

Sustainability is important in hospitality because the industry has a significant impact on the environment. Hotels consume a lot of energy and water, and produce waste and emissions. Sustainability in the hotel industry means acting in an environmentally and socially responsible way. In this way, hotels can not only contribute to climate protection, but also achieve economic benefits and a better image.

Through measures such as energy conservation, waste reduction, sustainable procurement and social responsibility, hotels can help to reduce their environmental impact while having a positive impact on the local community. A sustainable focus can also help reduce costs, increase customer satisfaction and improve the hotel's image. Overall, sustainability can help hotels to remain commercially successful in the long term while fulfilling their environmental and social responsibilities.

What hotels can do to become more sustainable

There are many ways in which hotels can reduce their environmental impact while still providing a first-class guest experience. Here are a few examples:

  • Reduce energy consumption: Hotels can reduce their energy consumption by using energy-efficient lighting and air-conditioning systems. The use of renewable energy, such as solar or wind power, helps to reduce energy consumption and environmental impact.
  • Reduce water consumption: Water consumption is reduced by installing water-saving devices such as taps, shower heads and toilet flushes. Water use is reduced by reusing water. For example, rainwater can be collected and used to water gardens and green spaces.
  • Reduce waste: Hotels can implement recycling programmes and ensure that waste is disposed of properly. Waste is reduced by replacing disposable products with reusable ones.
  • Promote community: Hotels can promote community by supporting local non-profit organisations or working with local businesses and artisans. Hiring local workers and supporting local suppliers can also help strengthen the local community.
  • Promote green tourism and educate guests: Hotels can also provide guests with information about eco-friendly activities and attractions in the area. For example, guests can be advised to reduce the use of towels and bed linen rather than having them changed daily. This results in water and energy savings.
NeedNect Solutions helps hotels to plan the use of goods, resources and staff more efficiently. The Austrian tourism industry wastes over 170,000 tonnes of food per year. NeedNect reduces food waste by up to 60%. The tourism industry is responsible for five percent of the world's CO2 emissions, most of which is due to travel, energy waste, air conditioning and water waste within businesses.

The benefits of sustainable tourism

In addition to reducing environmental impact and benefiting communities, sustainable practices can help reduce costs and improve a hotel's competitiveness. By reducing energy and water consumption, hotels can lower their operating costs.

Implementing recycling programmes and avoiding disposable products can also help reduce costs. In addition, hotels can enhance their brand, reputation and competitiveness by implementing sustainable practices. Guests are increasingly choosing sustainable hotels.

Sleep walking
Photo by Bruno van der Kraan / Unsplash

Best practices

There are now many hotels that have made sustainability an important part of their business strategy and are doing so successfully. For example, many hotels have set goals to be CO2 neutral or to produce zero waste. Here are a few examples of best practice:

Hotel Stadthalle, Austria: The Hotel Stadthalle in Vienna is the first city hotel in Europe with a zero-energy balance. The hotel relies on renewable energy sources such as solar and geothermal energy and uses environmentally friendly materials such as loam plaster and wood. It also reduces water consumption through rainwater harvesting and follows a consistent waste reduction policy through recycling and composting. In doing so, they are focusing more on the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Vigilius Mountain Resort, Italy: The Vigilius Mountain Resort in South Tyrol focuses on sustainable construction using regional materials and energy-efficient technologies. The hotel uses renewable energy sources, such as solar energy and biomass, and focuses on sustainable sourcing of food and products. The hotel is also involved in social projects in the local community.

Hotel Schgaguler, South Tyrol: Hotel Schgaguler in South Tyrol has set itself the goal of becoming a 'climate positive' hotel. This means that the hotel absorbs more CO2 than it emits. It relies on renewable energy sources such as solar and hydropower, uses environmentally friendly materials and recycles waste. The hotel supports the local community by supporting arts and cultural projects.

Ion Adventure Hotel, Iceland: The Ion Adventure Hotel in Iceland uses renewable energy sources such as geothermal and hydroelectric power, recycles waste and uses environmentally friendly materials. The hotel also participates in conservation programmes and offers guests sustainable outdoor activities.

Overall, sustainability is an important aspect of the hotel industry. By implementing sustainable practices, hotels can reduce their impact on the environment and the community while improving their business. Guests will increasingly look for sustainable hotels and expect hotels to play their part in sustainability. Sustainability is an important trend in the hotel industry that hotels cannot ignore if they want to be successful in the long term.

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