I recently read a great article written for Eco Salon, an on-line lifestyle blog featuring eco-friendly advice, entitled Trend on the Wane: Hotel Toiletries. The author, Kim Darby states that: "Luxury in the past has implied waste, but increasingly, luxury is being defined as what is most comfortable and thoughtful, not disposable. I find it refreshing that luxury can now rest graciously in the same sentence with words like recycle, conserve and green consciousness."
As an Innkeeper I always hated throwing away so many little plastic bottles and barely used bars of soap. For a time we were able to donate them to a local women's shelter but were then told we couldn't do that any longer because of a new ordinance stating this practice was unsanitary. The B & B Team is always looking for current information that we can share with our aspiring and current Innkeeper clients. That is why I was so excited when I found Clean the World at PAII'srecent Innkeeping Conference in Austin. This program offers Innkeepers a great solution in managing their amenities waste. Clean the World offers a Bed and Breakfast Partnership Program where Innkeepers simply collect used amenities and ship them to the Clean the World Recycling Center in Orlando, Florida. They then process the donations into products and donate them to countries that use them to help fight diseases caused by lack of cleanliness. All your staff time and goods donated are tax deductible and the organization will provide Innkeepers with quarterly statements detailing the amount of soap and shampoo donated during that period.
Another solution to amenity waste management is the use of refillable wall-mounted dispensers. This practice has been used in European hotels for many years and is now being used more and more in the states. Many of the PAII vendors that supply amenities offer a limited choice of their luxury products in bulk containers. Innstyle offers Natura brand shampoo, conditioner and body wash in bulk containers as well as attractive dispensers. Pineapple Hospitality offers a variety of 'green' amenities and dispensers. Gilchrist and Soames and Greenwich Bay Trading Co.offer some of their luxury products in bulk containers as well. Some of the products are now offered in more bio degradable plastic containers as well as paper bottles. As an example, Gilchrist and Soames offers their Beekind brand in the paper bottles.
I love the fact that Innkeepers now have more choices of 'green' luxury amenities to offer their guests as well as a great solution to managing amenity waste with the Clean the World program. We would love to hear from Innkeepers that have signed up for the Bed and Breakfast Partnership Program as well as what luxury green amenities you are currently using. Go Lux Green!