Earth Day (22 April) may be one day a year but right across the 6,000 IHG Hotels & Resorts’ properties in 100 countries, there is an ever-growing commitment to treading carefully, and offering guests a range of environmentally responsible initiatives and experiences that are good for the planet – every single day of the year.
The pandemic has changed the way travellers think. Research shows that 67% of Australians think sustainability is important when choosing a hotel and more than 80% globally feel it’s important to choose a hotel brand that operates responsibly. It also appears that travellers not only intend to do more for the planet and communities around them, they are also willing to pay for it. In Australia, younger Aussies are leading the charge. The average Aussie young adult would be prepared to part with up to 34% more for green accommodation.
Off the back of this recent OnePoll research by IHG, it has resulted in exciting developments in the sustainable tourism space with a huge range of bookable experiences and stays on offer for sustainability-savvy travellers. Think coral propagation dive experiences in Bora Bora, bee farming activities in the Hunter Valley, hotels with opening windows and green walls in Melbourne, as well as refillable water, wine and spirits bottles on the Gold Coast.
With Earth Day fast approaching, here are a range of experiences on offer at IHG Hotels & Resorts around the Pacific that will help leave the lightest of footprints.
voco Melbourne Central
Opening on 28 April 2022, guests of the brand new voco Melbourne Central will be able to enjoy operable windows in all of its 252 guest rooms reducing the need for energy depleting air-conditioning. Additionally, because greenery is good for air quality and health and wellbeing benefits, the hotel is cultivating plant life throughout its public spaces via a partnership with Victorian ecological garden specialists Fytogreen. Guests of the hotel can also take in an aesthetically pleasing kitchen garden which is located by the pool terrace which will be used by chefs of the hotel’s Blacksmith Brasserie restaurant. To be one of the first to experience the brand new hotel, head to www.ihg.com/voco
voco Kirkton Park Hunter Valley
On the sprawling grounds of voco Kirkton Park Hunter Valley, guests can experience 70 acres of interactive farming which incorporates bees, solar panels, animal farms, veggie gardens, and recycled water that feeds the lush estate. By taking part in the hotel’s regular ‘Sustainability Walk’s’ guests are able to learn more about what goes into the estate’s interactive farming practices and learn more about the property’s unique innovations. When it comes to meetings and events, the hotel’s ‘Bees for Trees’ program allows businesses to opt into planting a tree to offset the carbon footprint generated from hosting their event.
InterContinental Fiji Golf Resort & Spa
At InterContinental Fiji, guests can get up close and personal with an incredible hands-on coral propagation experience. Facilitated by experts in the field, guests of the resort can help regenerate the reef by re-homing living coral fragments into a metal frame structure in the coral nursery at the resort. Guests then get to take a dive into the coral nursery and re-home the coral on the seabed floor or they can watch the process take place from the glass bottom boat.
InterContinental Hayman Island Resort
Guests of Australia’s most iconic private island, nestled within one of the Seven Wonders of the Natural World, can be assured knowing a range of environmentally friendly initiatives are in place to help conserve its stunning surrounds. The resort has a veto on non-reef-safe sunscreen as well as a total ban on single use plastics. With in-Room thermal technology systems in place, lights, air conditioning, curtains, blinds and appliances are adjusted to optimise thermal efficiency and reduce energy use when guests aren’t in their room.
InterContinental Bora Bora Resort Thalasso Spa
In partnership with Espace Bleu, guests are able to experience for themselves a real coral nursery and learn how to make a coral cutting, doing their bit for regenerating the local reef. When the cutting becomes large enough to be viable, it is transferred to the coral reefs of Bora Bora. Guests are then able to keep track of their hand propagated coral as once it’s been re-homed, they are sent the GPS coordinates of the location and watch their coral flourish.
voco Gold Coast
Staying true to voco’s sustainability brand promise, guests at voco Gold Coast can rest easy knowing that over 150 recycled plastic bottles have been put to good use to create the ultra-comfortable bedding they’re sleeping on. Guests won’t find any miniature toiletries or hard-to-recycle amenities in the hotel, and instead will find large-size bulk amenities as well as glass water bottles only.
Crowne Plaza Queenstown
In the adventure capital of New Zealand guests can indulge guilt free at ThreeSixty bar thanks to a partnership with EcoSpirits which helps to reduce carbon emissions while the hotel’s ‘Refill NZ’ initiative helps to reduce plastic pollution by offering guests free water refills for their bottles. The hotel also supports local beer and wine producers, is a partner of KiwiHarvest which is a food rescue program, and is a proud contributor to the Hotel Weka Recycling Program.
InterContinental Tahiti Resort & Spa
At InterContinental Tahiti, vegetable gardens have been planted to highlight local products and to promote a local distribution channel that helps to reduce the hotel’s environmental footprint. With beehives to allow self-sufficient honey production, the resort team has created a circular economy allowing guests and the local community to reap the benefits.
To find out more and to book a sustainably friendly, Earth Day inspired getaway, head to www.ihg.com