Tapping into the eco-friendly market might help hotel chains out of their slump, but they'll have to prove that their efforts aren't merely "green-washing," and also deliver on the basics.
In a survey conducted by Timetric intelligence firm and published as part of the Global Business Traveler Survey 2013 report, 47 percent of business travelers said they prioritize ‘green’ hotels when staying out of town for work.
Seven percent said that eco-friendliness is an “extremely important” factor when they choose lodging.
Already cognizant of their guests’ desire to reduce their carbon footprints, many hotel chains have lately been investing in ‘greening’ their operations.
One of Starwood’s newest brands was the first chain to pursue LEED certification. Its Element brand buildings use in-room recycling bins, water-efficient faucets and fixtures, eco-friendly paints and cleaners, recycled carpeting, and all Energy Star-certified appliances. Other hotels use solar panels to heat rooms or water.
If business travelers let their feet do the talking, the market will see more hotels considering similar steps.
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Photo credit: Starwood's Aloft Charlotte Ballantyne hotel in North Carolina is LEED certified. Aloft Hotels and Resorts / Flickr