Hotels

IHG celebrates Earth Day all year round with spate of eco initiatives

Eather Day may be on the horizon (22 April) but for IHG, treading carefully is a year-round commitment.

The pandemic has changed the way travellers think.

A recent OnePoll survey by IHG found that 67 per cent of Australians think sustainability is important when choosing a hotel and more than 80 per cent globally feel it’s important to choose a hotel brand that operates responsibly.

In Australia, younger Aussies are leading the charge; the average Aussie young adult said they would be prepared to part with up to 34 per cent more for green accommodation.

Off the back of this research, IHG has released a huge range of bookable experiences and stays for sustainability-savvy travellers, like coral propagation dive experiences in Bora Bora, bee farming activities in the Hunter Valley, hotels with opening windows and green walls in Melbourne, as well as refillable water, wine and spirits bottles on the Gold Coast.

With Earth Day fast approaching, here’s a round-up of some of the experiences on offer at IHG Hotels & Resorts around the Pacific that will help leave a lighter footprint.

voco Melbourne Central, which is set to open its doors on 28 April, will have operational windows in all of its 252 guest rooms reducing the need for energy-depleting air-conditioning.

Plus, because greenery is good for air quality and health and wellbeing benefits, the hotel is cultivating plant life throughout its public spaces via a partnership with Victorian ecological garden specialists Fytogreen. There will also be a kitchen garden located by the pool terrace which will be used by chefs of the hotel’s Blacksmith Brasserie restaurant.

On the sprawling grounds of voco Kirkton Park Hunter Valley, guests can experience 70 acres of interactive farming which incorporates bees, solar panels, animal farms, veggie gardens, and recycled water that feeds the lush estate.

voco Kirkton Park

The hotel also hosts ‘Sustainability Walks’ where guests can learn more about what goes into the estate’s interactive farming practices and learn more about the property’s unique innovations. When it comes to meetings and events, the hotel’s ‘Bees for Trees’ program allows businesses to opt into planting a tree to offset the carbon footprint generated from hosting their event.

At InterContinental Fiji, guests can get up close and personal with a hands-on coral propagation experience facilitated by experts in the field to help regenerate the reef by re-homing living coral fragments into a metal frame structure in the coral nursery at the resort.

Guests also get to take a dive into the coral nursery and re-home the coral on the seabed floor or they can watch the process take place from the glass-bottom boat.

Australia’s most iconic private island, InterContinental Hayman Island Resort, has a range of environmentally friendly initiatives in place to help conserve its stunning surroundings including a veto on non-reef-safe sunscreen as well as a total ban on single-use plastics.

With in-Room thermal technology systems in place, lights, air conditioning, curtains, blinds and appliances are adjusted to optimise thermal efficiency and reduce energy use when guests aren’t in their room.

Hayman Island by InterContinental, surrounds

In partnership with Espace Bleu, guests at InterContinental Bora Bora Resort Thalasso Spa are able to experience for themselves a real coral nursery and learn how to make a coral cutting, doing their bit for regenerating the local reef.

When the cutting becomes large enough to be viable, it is transferred to the coral reefs of Bora Bora. Guests are then able to keep track of their hand propagated coral as once it’s been re-homed, they are sent the GPS coordinates of the location and watch their coral flourish.

Staying true to voco’s sustainability brand promise, guests at voco Gold Coast can rest easy knowing that over 150 recycled plastic bottles have been put to good use to create the ultra-comfortable bedding they’re sleeping on.

Crowne Plaza Queenstown‘s ThreeSixty bar has partnered with EcoSpirits which helps to reduce carbon emissions while the hotel’s ‘Refill NZ’ initiative helps to reduce plastic pollution by offering guests free water refills for their bottles.

The hotel also supports local beer and wine producers, is a partner of KiwiHarvest which is a food rescue program, and is a proud contributor to the Hotel Weka Recycling Program.

At InterContinental Tahiti, vegetable gardens have been planted to highlight local products and to promote a local distribution channel that helps to reduce the hotel’s environmental footprint.

With beehives to allow self-sufficient honey production, the resort team has created a circular economy allowing guests and the local community to reap the benefits.



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