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.”

Ode, the magazine for Intelligent Optimists, is an international independent journal that publishes positive news, about the people and ideas that are changing our world for the better. Click here for your FREE issue.

By Diane Daniel, Ode magazine


Camilla Vaga
Camilla Vaga4 years ago


Vita Pagh
Vita P4 years ago

Good start - hopefully much more hotels will follow! ...

Stephanie Reap
Stephanie Reap4 years ago

that;s awesome! I'm surprised more hotels aren't doing this.

aj E.
aj E4 years ago

very cool.

Lady Kaira
None None4 years ago

cool thanks

Wolfgang W4 years ago

Gute Idee.

Nils Anders Lunde
PlsNoMessage se4 years ago


Beverly M.
Past Member 4 years ago

This is amazing and very cool!

Azure Wildflowers


Sonia Minwer-Barakat Requ
Sonia M4 years ago

Good idea,thanks for sharing