Mortgages For Greening Your B&B

As a B&B innkeeper, what do you do to help protect the environment? What green actions do you take? Recycling, reducing consumption, composting, energy and water conservation, CFLs and natural daylighting, and avoiding pesticides are among the things innkeepers undertake. However, steps like home renovations or utility upgrades to be more environmentally conscious may seem financially out of reach to the average bed and breakfast. Ah, that’s where green mortgages come into your life.

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Green Certification: Focus Area 7 — Locally Grown, Organic Healthy Food

Food is half of what your bed and breakfast promises. It seems to me it should be an excellent offering, with you providing the best food you can. That means fresh, local, organic ingredients cooked into delicious, nutritious recipes. Your food, simple or elaborate, should make people yearn for more.

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Green Certification: Focus Area 6 — Buying Practices for Waste Reduction

Consumption Patterns
To simplify the question of how one greens their life and business, maybe it can be reduced to the simple concept of how you buy — your buying patterns. The less you buy the fewer resources you consume, or throw away. But what does that really mean, and how can you do that throughout the B&B?

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Green Certification: Focus Area 4 — The Building

The building(s) you house your bed and breakfast operations in is the foundation of your environmental program. Though making an existing building more environmentally friendly can be expensive and feel like a daunting task, if it’s done bit at a time it’s doable. And the payoffs are generally commensurate with the effort and expense.

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How Do You Green-Certify Your B&B?

The first steps you take toward green operations and green certification go together.

  1. start with expanding our attitude and knowledge
  2. baseline your existing usage of energy, water, waste and chemicals
  3. get staff, vendors and guests involved
  4. write your green/sustainability plan and policy
  5. track usage in action areas
  6. plan your marketing program, including not raising your rates just because you are “green”
  7. develop education programs for staff, vendor, guests and public

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B&B Consulting Job Reviews: Going Green in the Laundry Room

Each consulting job I’ve had has taught me how differently everyone approaches their lodging business. You can be sure their approach to greening their properties is unique too. Let me share highlights of various consulting jobs I’ve had. This article covers greening the laundry room.

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Organic Natural Fiber Towels

Last year I reported on the joys of 100-percent bamboo sheets and met with curiosity and interest. Here a year (and now ten years) later I’m still loving them. My bamboo sheets are all I’ve used during the past year to give them a hard test, and they still look great.

At the same time I bought bamboo sheets I bought natural-fiber and -color (no dyes) towels. What is natural fiber? Fabric made of plant cellulose instead of synthetic fibers.

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Green Travel and B&Bs

There is so much going on with the greening of the hospitality these days I am both energized and overwhelmed. It’s great! Take a look at Green Lodging News this week to see me profiled — it’s always a kick to see your name in “print”. This is a great weekly ezine promoting the greening of the hotel industry. Subscribe if you have any interest in expanding your environmental or hospitality knowledge.

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Sustainable Development for B&Bs

During the Greening of Hospitality Industry conference (GMIC) I attendend in Portland, OR, in February (2007), I was introduced to several high-end hotel properties that are stepping up to being environmentally sound hotels and adopting energy conservation as one of the actions they are taking to preserve the environment, and their budgets.

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Green Business Plan Statistics for an Environmentally Friendly Hotel

I have stood on my soap box for years talking about the wisdom of running a green B&B. I’ve been asked several times to review how much money is saved by conserving water and energy, only two of the resources I urge innkeepers to conserve. Here is a list of statistics about the actual resource savings for you to apply your water and energy rates to for coming up with how much you will save by implementing an environmentally friendly operations program.

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Organic Bamboo-fiber Bed Sheets

While attending a bed and breakfast conference recently, I visited Inn Style in the vendor section. Initially I only wanted to find out whether they were carrying any organic cotton sheets and towels. But I so quickly got side-tracked with other wonderful discoveries that I forgot to pursue my original question. What was so exciting as to get me off track? Bamboo sheets. 100% bamboo fiber sheets, not a
bamboo/cotton blend.

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An Effective Towel/Sheet Reuse Program for the B&B Innkeeper

There are so many ways to save money in your bed and breakfast without hurting your customer service or hospitality. One goal of developing a hospitality business is to provide the maximum customer service and hospitality while not wasting money. Some money-saving approaches are also environmentally friendly. It’s time to give thought to implementing one in specific: a towel/sheet reuse program.

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Marketing Your Green Inn

Your marketing materials, which at the very least include your website and brochure, are the avenue to tell prospective guests what experience they will have while staying at your inn. Those marketing avenues also give you a way to communicate your guest amenities, rules, contact information, and other important facts about your B&B business.

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Environmentally Safe Cleaning Tip

[Taken from a conversation on the old forum:]

Maybe you “green” folks know this one but it was new to me so I’m sharing.

Our oven was getting cleaned today with Easy Off oven cleaner and somehow the person cleaning it didn’t notice the grease/Easy Off mixture dripping onto a spot on the floor not protected by newspaper.

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Green Conference Centers

Meeting rooms and conference centers are a common additional revenue source for hotels; they could be for B&Bs too. Regardless of your property’s size, having separate space for a meeting or conference is a smart move. Consider, while you are developing your conference center space, creating a green environment and practice for that space. If you already have a meeting room, that could be a great place to begin sustainable practices.

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Wool Mattress Pads

There was a time I could sleep well anywhere, any time. As I “matured”, my sleeping needs matured as well. I have migrated from thinking that one bed is like any other bed to understanding that bed quality, construction, and materials matter greatly in providing a good night’s sleep. Upscale property owners and managers have known that for a long time. Paying guests understand it too and vote with their dollar. Your challenge is finding the balance that will satisfy the biggest majority of your guests.

The bed pad is the first step in making a great sleeping surface for you guests.

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Europe and Tourism in the 21st Century

In October, I travelled to Budapest, Hungary, to be initiated as a new member of the International Society of Hospitality Consultants. This is a group of senior independent consultants, working in various and diverse areas of the hospitality field. The members work worldwide and represent countries in all corners of the globe.

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