making hospitality more sustainable

Sustayz #06

HRS goes green


today we cover HRS’ green initiative, the New European Bauhaus and a few things more. Buckle up for our sixth newsletter and let’s go!

You might have heard of HRS, an acronym for “Hotel Reservation Service” and a German company operating since 1972 in the hotel reservation space.

A few days back they launched “Green Stay” an initiative that aims to reduce the emission of your next business trip (as if a pandemic hasn’t done enough).

The idea behind HRS’ Green Stay is to “provide a well-defined global standard for the comparison of the ecological sustainability of lodging suppliers”. While normally we would be skeptical with these types of initiatives, because despite the good intentions might just be a marketing stunt, HRS has done things properly partnering up with some leading institutions such as the World Travel and Tourism Council, the Global Sustainable Tourism Council, the Sustainable Hospitality Alliance, and the Greenhouse Gas Protocol.

A framework developed by the hospitality industry was well overdue and among the things that are being monitored you got the size of the hotel, energy consumption, waste management, water management, laundry, and refrigerant types and consumption.

To obtain the “Green Stay” status on HRS a hotel can answer a questionnaire, report more than 50 measures adopted, and give visibility on room consumption. A third-party certification is also required to get the “Expert certified” badge.

These listings will be distributed on various corporate procurement channels via HRS’ integration.

Pretty cool stuff, hopefully, business travel will come back sooner than later for us to see the impact of this initiative.

A few months back, during her 2020 State of the Union address, Ursula von Der Leyen announced a new initiative that goes under the name of “New European Bauhaus”. In von Der Leyen’s words, the idea is to give a framework that combines design, accessibility, sustainability, affordability, and investment to deliver the European Green Deal, that hopefully will mark the beginning of a new age of (sustainable) prosperity, post-pandemic, in the Old World.

But before going more into this, let’s take a small step back for those of you who think of a German DIY chain when hearing the word “bauhaus”.

The original “bauhaus” was an artistic movement that happened Germany between the two wars. The idea was pretty catchy, even for those days: combining architecture, design, and visual arts to create “comprehensive artwork” (or “Gesamtkunstwerk”), a place where functionality and aesthetics could live together.

How does this work with the goal of the European Union of becoming carbon neutral by 2050? The idea behind is adopting a multidisciplinary approach to a big problem and ultimately reaching a circular economy, a regenerative growth model that gives back to the planet more than it takes.

The idea is pretty powerful, and since we are often talking about energy efficiency in buildings as a way to make hospitality more sustainable, this New European Bauhaus seems a good way to move forward. However, there are already some question marks on the project. Is it realistic to reach a common European approach? How about the budget? And is it realistic to create a movement from the high towers of European bureaucracy?

You can join the conversation, the first topic being launched is “How would nature design a city”

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