Check Into the Zero-Waste Hotel
Most hotels don’t even have in-room recycling, but at the Boulder Outlook Hotel and Suites in Boulder, Colorado, customers will find not one but four recycling and composting options.
Boulder Outlook, an independent mid-priced hotel that opened in 2003, went “zero waste” in 2006. The label is a bit of a misnomer, as some waste is created. “What it means is we’re doing everything possible to divert materials from the landfill,” says Outlook owner Dan King. “We’re at about 80 to 85 percent and we’re committed to getting over 90 percent by the end of the year.”
The hotel’s “green goddess,” Diane Schevene, is constantly on the lookout for ways to trim waste. “She looks at it almost daily and meets with staff to see what areas we can improve,” King says. “It really starts with looking at how you purchase and what you bring into your stream that you then have to manage. We used to have the traditional cups and Styrofoam, now we use compostable products.”
King credits Boulder non-profit group Eco-Cycle with starting the hotel on its journey. And Boulder Outlook isn’t stopping at waste, but will add more energy-saving devices this fall. “It’s a mission for us. We’re always trying to continue it.”
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By Diane Daniel, Ode magazine