Location, Convenience. Wi-fi. These are the necessities that Hotel 101 offers to their guests. Soon, the hotel will be adding another word to this list and that word is sustainable.
Hotel 101- Manila is a Department of Tourism (DOT) and of Quarantine accredited multiple-use hotel in Manila where guests can stay in a comfortable and clean environment. The hotel follows strict disinfection and cleaning protocols, offering a safe and happy stay.
Recently Gel B. Gomez, Hotel 101 General Manager, attended the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) Global Summit that was held in Manila last April and committed to adopt the “Hotel Sustainability Basics,” a globally recognized and coordinated set of criteria that all hotels should implement as a minimum to drive responsible travel and tourism.
“Sustainable tourism is very much needed after the pandemic. We really support it. This is something that we can give to the next generation and tourism will play a very, very big part in sustainability, the whole concept of it,” Gomez said in an interview.
Developed by the industry for the industry, it highlights 12 actions which are fundamental to hotel sustainability and will help raise the base level of sustainability across the entire hospitality industry by providing every hotel a starting point on their sustainability journey.
The criteria focus on actions which are fundamental to hotel sustainability and address tourism’s impact on the planet across a spectrum of critical issues. These criteria include actions to measure and reduce energy use, measure and reduce water use, identify and reduce waste, and measure and reduce carbon emissions.
It also includes a linen reuse program, use of green cleaning products, the elimination of plastic straws, stirrers and single-use plastic water bottles, the implementation of bulk dispensers, as well as measures to benefit local communities.
While Hotel 101-Manila was one of the hotels that served as a quarantine facility for overseas Filipino workers during the pandemic, Gomez related that the hotel made use of this time to train their personnel on behavioral and customer service standards injected with sustainability programs.
“Sustainability should always be part of some project. It is the key result area of each department that should come up with their own sustainability project,” Gomez said.
To show that they are serious in pushing for sustainable tourism, Gomez related that this year alone, the hotel management promoted six staff which included the Head of Public Relations, Head of Sales, three Hotel Managers and one Housekeeping Duty Manager.
Along with their promotion, each leader will have their own key program to head. The Hotel Manager for Hotel 101 – Manila Ryann Dimayuga is the key person for sustainability. The Head of Public Relations Brian Ong is the one in charge for branding while the Hotel Manager in Makati is in charge of compliance. The Hotel Manager of Jinjiang in Ortigas heads the training and development program.
“We are a three-star hotel and we do not have those key departments unlike in other hotels. But being a midclass hotel doesn’t stop us in offering as much as we can to our employees, to our stakeholders, to our clients so we still wanted to have those key departments and one of which is our Green Team,” she explained.
“After the pandemic, everyone wanted to do something with the environment. The awareness, the consciousness, the sustainability is much felt after the pandemic. We were given the time to stop and assess, evaluate and to give back to the community. I think sustainable tourism is very much needed after the pandemic and we really support it,” Gomez added.
The Green Team was established during the hotel’s strategic planning last January and the team, with the support of the management committee, has already initiated a number of projects. One such project is the plastic bottle segregation campaign where the hotel has a partnership with a nongovernment organization. So far, the hotel has donated 160 bags of plastic water bottles which will be recycled again for reuse.
The hotel will also launch a quarterly Manila Bay coastal cleaning up campaigns organized by the Philippine Coast Guard. Since Hotel 101 also has a hotel in Iloilo, they will launch projects, such as tree planting programs, benefitting the communities around their hotel at Injap Tower Hotel in Iloilo City..
“Hotel 101 is also a member of the Pasay City Alliance of Tourism Advocates which is a new association exclusive for Pasay City based hospitality firms and it closely collaborates with the Pasay City local government. One of our programs is that we hire employees from Pasay City,” Gomez said.
The hotel has also adopted energy saving programs where all the lights they use are now LED lights. The perimeter areas now use solar lights that can last for 10 hours. The hotel that is being built in Boracay will have solar panels installed on the roof top. It has also done away with single flush toilets and employees make use of water dispensers.
Other projects include the purchase of environmentally friendly corporate giveaways, participation in efforts to save the coral reefs, among others.
“We are also into promoting the country’s cultural heritage also through sustainable means. We had a bike ride tour that brought us from our hotels in Ortigas, Makati, Pasay and to Intramuros. We will also be promoting the products of the various provinces in the hotel like the coffee from Cagayan de Oro,” she said.
For now, Hotel 101 will be busy with the accreditation process to be recognized as a sustainable hotel. Some hotels in the country have already been certified as such.
“We have already submitted our application for accreditation and we are just waiting for the next steps. It’s high time for this and it is very inclusive,” Gomez said.