Here at Hawkins International, we are big supporters of Earth Day. The annual event, which began in 1970, brings people together to acknowledge the responsibility we have to keep our planet environmentally protected. Now over 192 countries participate in this event annually, and we, as a planet, are making strides to protect the earth every day, in ways we never imagined possible a few years ago.
The InterContinental New York Barclay, reopening in Midtown East this May, is a leader in the sustainability world. The hotel boasts over 704 guest rooms, 31 suites, a Presidential Suite, a Penthouse Sky Suite and 2 great ballrooms, all created with sustainability in the forefront of the plans. Their aim is for their sustainability strategy, which aligns with the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, to become the benchmark of the hospitality industry. All rooms are furnished with Energy Star Appliances including water-saving faucets, shower heads, and toilets, as well as LED lighting throughout the entire hotel, which further reduces their energy consumption. The Gin Parlour, which will serve a daily sustainable power breakfast, as well as dinner and appetizers with a full cocktail menu to compliment the dishes, is a certified green restaurant.
The green efforts don’t stop at the interior of the property; all the roofs are insulated and double as a garden where fruits, vegetables and herbs are grown. This produce is then used in the on-site restaurants, as well as other local, organic ingredients. Beehives located on the rooftops also help to support NYC’s ecosystem, and 100% of the hotels waste is “digested” and goes directly into the NYC sewage system, creating less waste in landfills.
Not only is the hotel lessening their environmental footprint, but they are also helping the less fortunate; used soaps, shampoos and lotions are donated to local charities as well as Clean the World hospitality recycling program, and leftover food is donated to City Harvest after events.
When interviewed, Herve Houdre, General Manager of The Barclay, confirmed that these energy efficient practices saved them $370,000 over the past five years. As a devoted advocate for sustainability, Houdre sits on multiple sustainability boards and finds passion in the initiatives the hotel is taking. He assured interviewers that practicing sustainability isn’t a PR move, rather the hotel takes these initiatives because they believe so strongly in its importance. Maybe this Earth Day we can all learn a lesson from The Barclay; sometimes, less really is more!