Running a sustainable hotel operation can be a challenge. The regular turnover of guests means that hotels must work hard to find ways to minimize waste and promote efficiency. So we were excited to have the opportunity to partner with one of the market leaders in sustainability-focused extended-stay  hotels as they opened their first Kentucky location.

Home2 Suites, part of the Hilton family of hotels, is an all-suite hotel brand designed for modern business travelers and extended stay guests. What sets them apart from others in their market segment is their top-to-bottom focus on sustainability. All of their hotels are built to be energy efficient and minimize waste.

“The Home2 Suites brand was designed to be set up for success when it comes to recycling,” says Angela Cerasuolo,  Director of Sales for Home2’s Lexington location. “A few items to note are all our trash cans have a Trash/Recycle options, our breakfast is served on plated china as to reduce paper waste, and our carpets are made out of recycled material. These are only a few items that Home2 Suites does to contribute to making our world a better place to live in.”

Further, their rooms eliminate one of the most persistent sources of hotel waste. By placing soap and shampoo dispensers in all of their showers, Home2 is able to eliminate the waste of single-use bars of soap and shampoo bottles. That’s bad news for all you collectors of hotel shampoo, but good news for the planet!

Each room also features a kitchenette that includes reusable china and flatware, thus eliminating single-use materials. And with the Lexington location just yards from Trader Joe’s, the travelers they host can easily prepare low-waste meals right in their rooms. And they can store their wine and wash their dishes in Energy Star rated appliances.

Their dual-flush toilets and LED fixtures ensure that they are using resources as efficiently as possible, and their saline pool eliminates the need for harsh chemicals.

Home2 doesn’t have a cookie cutter approach to sustainability though. For example, the Lexington location preserved and incorporated a very historic tree into the development plan. “Here at the Home2 Suites Lexington, we take pride in the area around us. Special pride goes to our beautiful 300-year-old bur oak tree that is located on the side of the hotel,” said Cerasuolo.

Working with Dave Leonard Tree Specialists, Home2’s developers carefully protected the tree’s root zone, removed invasive honeysuckle that was crowding the tree’s lower branches, and pruned the tree for aesthetics and health. Now the bur oak is an amenity for the hotel, says Cerasuolo. “We have two special patios that look on to the tree, and it is a great place to relax and enjoy all that nature has to offer.”

One of Home2’s missions is to give back to their communities, and that commitment is reflected in their Your2 Hands program, through which each location supports a local non-profit or community group of their choice. Bluegrass Greensource was chosen as the Your2 Hands partner for the Lexington location, and we are looking forward to hosting their staff in community environmental events in the year to come.

As the Your2 Hands partner, we were pleased to be a part of their Grand Opening celebration on June 10th. The community came out in large numbers to see what makes this hotel brand decidedly different, and we were pleased to have the opportunity to speak with others about the great work they are doing!

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