Green Globe for two regional hotels
Premier global sustainability certification for the travel
Premier global sustainability certification for the travel, tourism and hospitality industry
FM company Farnek Avireal has signed up the first two hotels in the region for the internationally-recognised sustainable Green Globe Certification (GGC). The two UAE-based hotels are The Palace in The Old Town, Dubai and the Miramar Resort in Fujairah.
“GGC is primarily a premier global certification developed specifically for the travel, tourism and hospitality industry, with the intent of implementing sustainable and social practices at all levels of management within the industry,” Farnek Avireal GM Markus Oberlin explains to fmME.
“The travel, tourism and hospitality industry differs from the other sectors because it has to continuously seek to strike a balance between operating costs without affecting the comfort of guests. Providing ultimate comfort is the industry’s key business. This calls for a different approach in energy management and sustainable practices from mainstream certification.
“Another significant factor that distinguishes GGC is that it involves a paperless process, guaranteeing efficiency and an eco-friendly approach. GGC also complies with ISO 17021.”
Farnek Avireal is the preferred partner and auditor for GGC in the broader Middle East.
“Farnek Avireal has been providing services such as unique and effective benchmarking software Hotel Optimizer, total FM and other energy-efficient solutions to the hotel industry for over 30 years. This has allowed us to establish a close and trustworthy relationship with hoteliers.
“GGC allows Farnek Avireal to provide clients with a further step in realising and cutting utility costs and consumption, performing corporate social responsibility, obtaining an improved image as well as international recognition,” says Markus. The goal of the certification process is to assess the environmental sustainability performance of an organisation.
“The standard provides organisations with a framework to conduct a comprehensive assessment of their environmental sustainability performance, through which they can monitor improvements and achieve certification.”
In terms of Hotel Optimizer itself, Markus says this is “essentially an on-line benchmarking tool designed for the hotel industry. It is based on the idea that you can manage only what you measure. Thus measuring and analysing comes as a prerequisite to identifying potential areas for improvement and subsequent energy-saving solutions.”
Each hotel is benchmarked anonymously with comparable operations. In addition to the monthly benchmark overview, Hotel Optimizer produces detailed, one-on-one, annual evaluations.
Subsequently, Avireal can analyse these reports and initiate any energy-saving measures that may be necessary. With this tool, management has the ability to set ambitious, but realistic, annual goals for the technical services department.
So how quickly can Hotel Optimizer and GGC start to save hotel operators money? “Achieving GGC ensures that a hotel has a sustainable operation in place and has low operating costs, which means increased profit. The Hotel Optimizer has proven to reduce utility and associated costs by 15% to 20%,” says Markus.
Will Farnek Avireal be targeting any other sectors? Markus GGC provides certification for categories as diverse as hotels and resorts, golf courses, tourist attractions, building and construction, the travel industry (tour operators, meetings and incentives, destination management), restaurants and transportation (bus, limousine, car rental).
Abdul-Quddus Sheikh, director of engineering at The Palace, says: “There are three main advantages of attaining certification. First of all, a competitive edge, especially when we are trying to attract environment-conscious travelers, which is a major travel trend today. Secondly, after the initial investment, sustainability starts to pay back straightaway. Finally, and most importantly, it is our duty to save energy and natural resources for the next generation,” said Sheikh.
Daniel Anthony, chief engineer at the Miramar, Al Aqah Beach Resort in Fujairah, concurs: “The bottom lines is all about saving money and the environment.”