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Will a Hotel's SUSTAINABLE GREEN Program Generate
New Revenue and Increased Profits?

by Richard Namovich
November 2, 2007

Within the hospitality industry, some members of the media and some hospitality companies have questioned the real financial value of aggressively seeking out green initiatives, claiming “they are not cost effective and the guest doesn’t want it”. 

Some have already been used, abused and deceived and, as a result, have decided it is a “No Go” item, for them and for their property.  This is very sad.

On the other hand, some major hospitality corporations have instituted LEED standards for new builds and require I-BEAM standards.  Additionally, SUSTAINABLE GREEN processes are being used by contractors and vendors for retrofits and renovations.  These groups are stating that “the world is moving in this direction and it is better to be ahead of the curve”.

The real center of this discussion should be a SUSTAINABLE GREEN program that involves no investment, meets or exceeds all environmental laws and standards, reduces overhead, increases occupancy and increases ADR, RevPAR and profits. 

If this is truly possible, why is there any hesitation?

First of all, is there any demand from the market for SUSTAINABLE GREEN, in a manner similar to the inception of the “smoke-free” campaigns of the past?  

Recent surveys by other hotel and hospitality management organizations and publications indicate that the ADR can be increased when properties actually offer rooms that are green.  In addition to the expected demands of eco-friendly customers, surveys indicate that business travelers, guests and their family members, including those with a host of allergy and medical conditions, would flock to a property that could provide this option.  At the moment, some of these potential customers cannot travel and confirm hotel/motel rooms due to the unfriendly, unclean and unsafe hotel room environment.   For these customers, the surveys indicate that they would pay an increased ADR from $10-$25, or more.

Secondly, is there an applicable method to immediately increase profits?

This is a fantastic Sales and Marketing opportunity for any SUSTAINABLE GREEN property, to educate the entire hospitality marketplace (i.e., consumers, providers, manufacturers and maintenance personnel) concerning clean, environmentally safe, odor-free rooms and significantly improved quality of Indoor Air.  
It may not be properly understood that this is a marketable quality, and it is possible to promote this amenity and charge a premium for a certifiably clean and environmentally safe room.  

Currently, an increasing number of properties are including these “green” statements into their advertising and promotional materials, providing all of their potential customers with a unique choice.  Without really knowing the details, any customer can choose to be in a “green” property, instead of “the other” property.  Again, surveys indicate that guests are willing to pay a premium to get what they want, if it is actually delivered.  Governors of certain states, e.g., California and Florida, have instituted a “green” requirement into their employees travel policies, requiring a complete explanation if not booking into a “green” property for overnights or meetings.

Thirdly, is there a measurable, substantial expense reduction for the property?

Recent test programs, by certain Florida utilities and energy consultants, indicate that it is possible to achieve up to 21% savings in energy consumption (from the heating and cooling portion of the bill) when PTAC and HVAC air handling systems are properly managed without chemicals.  This data is so compelling that one Florida utility has issued a Rebate Program to encourage the use of an air handling preventive maintenance program that utilize a SUSTAINABLE GREEN, chemical-free processes.  

In addition, when the staff is exposed to clean, pure, healthy and environmentally safe indoor air on a daily basis certain hidden costs are also reduced (e.g., reduced sick days, lower chemical exposure, etc.).  

The hotelier should use the benefits of a SUSTAINABLE GREEN program to achieve Indoor Air Quality (IAQ), obtain savings from lower energy usage from clean, efficient air handling units and market the clean and environmentally safe rooms, at a premium.

While some commentators and hotel management personnel focus their attention and observations on the reduction of water usage and reuse of towels by guests, the real center of this discussion should be a total SUSTAINABLE GREEN program that includes energy savings, improvement of Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) and increased revenue.  

However, the discussion should not define “green” or “green washing” but should define SUSTAINABLE GREEN processes that have verifiable end results in the short term and in the long term.  There should be demonstrable reductions in expenses, increases in profits, consistent Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) and improved energy efficiency.  

Most importantly, there will be significant increases in the ADR and occupancy, as a concurrent result of a comprehensive SUSTAINABLE GREEN process.  In order to assess the awareness of government organizations and the private sector, it is only necessary to observe the high level of discussion on pending actions by the various industry associations and hospitality companies.  

A simple entry of any of the topics and key words in this document into Google, or any Internet search engine, will return a table of listings which number in the millions. This is a topic whose time has come.

We know that there is a way to increase the ADR and reduce expenses by recognizing the demands of the guest and the marketplace, applying air handling industry standards, pursuing utility incentives and complying with the requirements of the government.  

We know that this can be achieved, today!

About the author: Richard Namovich is President CEO of Rejuvinaire®. He is an entrepreneur, inventor, author, trainer, consultant, and public-speaker. He can be reached at:


Richard Namovich
President CEO
850-321-0303 Private Cell

Also See: Green Hotel Development Is Profitable Now! Inspirations from the Pioneers Make it Dangerous NOT to Be Green / Jim Butler / March 2007

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