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Executive Chef jW Foster of The Fairmont San Francisco Establishes Honey Beehives in the
Hotelís Culinary Garden; Expects to Produce 250 Pounds of Honey a
Year and Support the Declining Bee Population

SAN FRANCISCO -- June 21, 2010 -In partnership with Marshallís Farm, Executive Chef jW Foster of The Fairmont San Francisco has installed honey beehives in the hotelís new culinary garden in order to help support the bee population, which has decreased in number by 90 percent since the 1980s.

Beekeepers established four nascent beehives, each containing approximately 20,000 bees, in the culinary garden that is located outdoors on the hotelís lobby level.  When the beehives mature in four to eight weeks, they will each house up to 50,000 bees. 

The United States Department of Agriculture believes a virus is responsible for the collapse of honey bee colonies.  This situation is often called ďCCDĒ or Colony Collapse Disorder.  Without honey bees, pollination is not possible.  The decrease of the honey bee population is extremely significant since one out of three mouthfuls in the diet is affected by the honey bee population.

Foster describes todayís installation as the first step in cultivating a culinary garden which will eventually measure 1,000 square feet.  He will soon add rosemary, thyme, oregano, basil, chives and cilantro to the lavender which now grows in the garden.  Guests can view the culinary garden through floor to ceiling windows in the foyer leading to the hotelís Pavilion Room.

ďThe cultivation of honey beehives marks the latest step in The Fairmontís history of environmental stewardship.  Our hotel has been part of the fabric of San Francisco for more than a century and its success can be contributed to an enduring commitment to the local community and environment,Ē explains,Ē Regional Vice President and General Manager of The Fairmont San Francisco Tom Klein.

Executive Chef jW Foster of The Fairmont San Francisco, Helene and Spencer Marshall of Marshallís Farm, and Regional Vice President and General Manager of The Fairmont San Francisco Tom Klein taste honey while installing four beehives, containing 80,000 honey bees, in the landmark hotelís new culinary garden.  The initiative is aimed to help maintain the dwindling bee population.

This year the beehives are estimated to produce approximately 250 pounds of honey which will be served to hotel guests as part of The Fairmontís commitment to offering local, organic, sustainable cuisine.  This home-harvested honey will be used in soups, salad dressings, pastries, ice cream and as an accompaniment to the hotelís time-honored afternoon tea service.

The Fairmont is currently the only hotel in San Francisco to raise honey bees.  Honey beehives can also be found at The Fairmont Dallas; The Fairmont Royal York in Toronto, The Fairmont Waterfront in Vancouver; The Fairmont Algonquin in St. Andrews, Canada; The Fairmont Yangcheng Lake in Kunshan, China and The Fairmont Mount Kenya Safari Club.

The Fairmont San Francisco offers 591 newly renovated guest rooms and suites with unrivaled views of the San Francisco Bay Area, three distinctive restaurants and easy access to the cityís most popular attractions.  The hotel is located atop Nob Hill at 950 Mason Street.  For reservations, please call 1-800-441-1414 or visit

Headquartered in American Canyon, Calif., Spencer and Helene Marshall of Marshallís Farm have been producing award-winning organic honey since 1993.  They currently operate beehives throughout Northern California and their honey is served at The Culinary Institute of America.  For more information about Marshallís Farm, please visit


Samara Diapoulos
The Fairmont San Francisco


Also See: The Fairmont Washington, D.C. is Abuzz With 105,000 Permanent Guests; Hotel's Rooftop Beehives Enhance Culinary Program and Help the Environment / May 2009

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