The hospitality industry is taking steps to become more sustainable, with hotels looking for ways to reduce their environmental impact.
One such company is room2, which has taken an innovative approach to sustainability by implementing circular design principles in its properties — essentially planning from the outset for materials to be repurposed or recycled for as long as possible.
What are room2 hometels?
Room2 is a hotel brand that launched the world’s first net zero hometel, room2 Chiswick, in London in 2021, according to the company’s website. Hometels, defined by room2 as “a space between home and a hotel,” are an attempt to seize on the growing popularity of vacation rentals by providing the comfort and flexibility of a home while offering the useful amenities that come with hotels.
How room2 helps reduce tourism’s impact
The tourism industry has a significant impact on the environment. Room2 hometels reduce that impact by offering eco-friendly amenities and services. For example, its three-in-one custom-designed waste bins separate food waste from mixed packaging and general waste, helping guests reduce their waste and make sure they dispose of items properly.
Room2 Chiswick is engineered from top to bottom to make as little impact on the environment as possible. From the solar panels on the roof to a ground-source heat pump more than two football fields below the surface, the hometel runs on 100% renewable energy, as reported in CEO Magazine.
Additionally, the Belfast hometel will have a café bar top made from recycled glass, according to Serviced Apartment News. It’s also outfitting rooms with sofa cushion covers that are made from 100% biodegradable plant material, and the carpets are made from recycled fishing nets recovered from oceans.
The company has also offset the production of its furniture at room2 Chiswick — which is all made locally — by planting more than 4,400 trees.
Why are room2’s sustainable hometels important?
Room2’s sustainability efforts aim to reduce the hospitality industry’s air pollution and waste. By implementing circular design principles, room2 hometels are setting an example for other hotels to follow.
According to a report by Booking.com, 83% of travelers consider sustainable tourism important, which means that places like room2 hometels could have a competitive advantage in the market.
Room2 hometels’ circular design principles go beyond just reducing waste and carbon pollution. They also promote innovation and generate value beyond disposable items.
“It took a team effort to achieve BREEAM [Building Research Establishment’s Environmental Assessment Method] Excellent certification and operate at 89% more energy-efficient than the average U.K. hotel,” Robert Godwin, room2’s co-founder and managing director told CEO Magazine.
He said it took “multiple rounds of planning” as well as pushback from locals to get the hometel built, but he added, “it’s all been worthwhile.”
Join our free newsletter for cool news and actionable info that makes it easy to help yourself while helping the planet.