Environmental concerns and sustainable development are very important to us. It extends from our purchasing policies and transport to pollution prevention and waste management, and informs all of our working practices.
At Elite Hotels we believe passionately that in order to make a big impression on our guests, we don’t have to make a big impact on the environment. Our sustainability commitment statement can be downloaded here, alternatively please read on for an insight into our environmental ethos.
Without the commitment, passion and professionalism of our teams at each of the hotels, we would never be able to achieve many of the standards that we have reached. By engaging with each and every employee we firmly believe that they will become ‘catalysts for change’ who will not only develop a conscientious and proactive approach to environmental and sustainability issues but will also ensure that it becomes a key part of the working culture here at Elite Hotels.
To achieve this we have in place the following:
- ‘Core Values’ competency wheels which detail the company’s expectations of all members of the team. These are introduced on their first day and include sustainability as a key area
- Performance management reviews for all staff cover sustainability and environmental achievements
- Each hotel holds regular sustainability committee and employee forum meetings with set agendas that cover all areas of sustainability and also communicate up-to-date figures for energy and recycling
- Business plans at group and hotel level which include sustainability objectives
Recycling - Reducing Our Carbon Footprint
Like many of our guests, we see recycling as a key part of reducing our carbon footprint and our impact on the environment. We encourage all our teams to make sure that recycling becomes part of their departmental culture and regularly publish recycling figures so that they are aware of progress to date. Key initiatives in this area include:
- All glass, paper, cardboard, batteries and lamps are recycled
- Food waste at Luton Hoo is sent to a biogas plant whilst Tylney Hall composts its food waste on-site
- An ongoing project to introduce mixed recycling in conjunction with our waste management company. This has led to a significant increase in recycling
- Damaged linen mended in-house and recycled back into the operation
- All water bottles are made from recycled glass
- An ongoing project to introduce ‘fuel pod’ technology so that cooking oil can be turned into bio-diesel for estate machinery and company cars
Energy - Reducing Our Carbon Footprint
Although technological advances are embraced wherever possible, to reduce energy usage, changing behaviour and promoting best practice in all our hotels is fundamental in achieving year on year reduction.
By introducing and promoting the following initiatives, all hotels have managed to reduce their energy usage over the last 2 years:
- Low energy lamps used in all the hotels with an ongoing strategy to introduce LED bulbs
- All printers are now set to double-sided printing and where possible copiers used rather than individual printers
- All guests are given the option of not having their towelling laundered every day
- Sheet laundering is no longer an automatic daily process. All housekeepers are empowered to determine alternative cycles in appropriate circumstances
- Pool covers introduced to outdoor pools
- In quieter periods each hotel proactively closes bedroom floors and wings
- Timer switches and ‘dusk until dawn’ sensors used wherever possible
- Energy saving key card system used across all bedrooms at Luton Hoo
- New boilers and heating controls installed to allow for more effective management of both heating and hot water
- All hotels operate in-house laundries thus avoiding the need to send large volumes of linen by road on a daily basis
Preserving the Nation's Heritage
As visitors to our hotels will testify each one of our properties holds significant historical importance. To preserve both the exquisite buildings and breathtaking estates, the company has always taken a consistent and long-term approach, knowing that ultimately we are custodians who must safeguard our heritage for future generations.
To achieve this the company works alongside local conservation groups, national bodies as well as specialist craftsmen and experts to ensure that we do all we can to maintain and enhance each property.
Diners in our AA Rosette accredited restaurants will be able to sample some homegrown flavours as well as locally sourced produce. The introduction of 'Herb Gardens' at the hotels reduces the need for external supplies. Sourcing many ingredients locally also reduces 'food miles' and supports the local community.
We believe that all our hotels should play an active part in their local communities. Each hotel ‘sponsors’ a local community project whereby members of the team are encouraged to provide hands-on support in areas where it is much needed.
In addition, the hotels support and attend local and regional fairs and events, host local tourist groups and donate prizes to charity fundraising events.
Elite Hotels are delighted to announce that each of our hotels has gained silver accreditation from The Green Tourism Business Scheme (GTBS).GTBS is the leading sustainable tourism certification scheme in the UK. Green Tourism businesses are focused on being sustainable, responsible and green. This is demonstrated through three grading levels (Bronze, Silver and Gold) and businesses are assessed every two years to ensure standards are maintained. Businesses which take part in the GTBS are assessed by a qualified grading advisor against a rigorous set of criteria, covering a range of areas, like energy and water efficiency, waste management and biodiversity. To qualify our hotels needed to show they used a significant amount of recycled products, as well as operating a recycling scheme. The hotels also needed to be able to demonstrate that they are working extensively to source supplies both locally and ethically as well as maintaining standards, minimising damage to the environment and meeting good standards of practice while providing a high quality of service.
At Elite Hotels we realise that there is always more that can be done to help protect our environment and run ourselves in a more sustainable manner. Although we are proud of the initiatives we have in place, we will not be resting on our laurels.
Each year our annual business plan focuses heavily on our environmental and sustainability commitments and how in the future we can improve still further.