Prior to Hurricane Ivan, our beach resort was already Green Globe certified for our environmental efforts. In common with much of the island, the property was badly affected by the strong winds. However, during our major renovation programme post-hurricane, we dramatically increased our environmental and social efforts, through major investments in community support, renewable energy and environmental practices. As a native Grenadian, the owner, Mr Royston Hopkin, is a leading member of the local community in both Grenada and the wider Caribbean. He has held the position of chairman of the Caribbean Alliance for Sustainable Tourism (CAST) for several years and as such, has taken a leading role in promoting the adoption of sustainable practices in hotel management throughout the Caribbean.
In recognition of our efforts, we have recently been awarded the 2007 Award for Stewardship of The Ocean by Coastal Living magazine. We were extolled by the publication for "re-emerging on the scene post-hurricane as a 'green' property that kept the island’s natural resources top of mind during a major renovation project, and now continues to inspire both visitors and hotel staff".
We support our local community in Grenada through the Royston Hopkin Scholarship fund, which provides money each year for five needy students attending schools in the local community to receive all textbooks for their secondary and tertiary education. This fund has enabled children from underprivileged homes, who might not otherwise have been able to afford to attend school to achieve an education. The owner is also a member of the Board of Directors of the Queen Elizabeth Home for Children and the hotel makes regular contributions to this charitable cause.
We are reducing our environmental impacts by taking the following initiatives: using energy efficient light bulbs, air drying laundry, recycling soaps, paper towels, and bed linen fabric, installing dustbins along the beachfront & employing staff to help keep the beach litter free, installing solar rooftop heaters, investing in insulated doors, installing sensor powered automated switch off air-conditioning units, requesting that customer’s reuse their towels and giving them the option to request reduced linen changes, and using biodegradable products & detergents.
In addition, we also:
- Plant native trees on the beach front to provide shade and protect the beach from erosion
- Have an in-house herb & vegetable garden
- Train staff in environmental best practice
- Arrange bi-weekly meetings to discuss environmental policy
- Obtain our resources from environmentally conscientious suppliers
- Promote our environmental efforts to customers
As a tour operator
People and places. When you think about it, that’s what holidays are all about. As the UK’s leading long haul tour operator we want to protect them both by striking a balance between having a great time and acting with consideration for the planet and its people. We are working to achieve this balance in 3 ways:
Getting our business in order
We are working hard to address our own direct impacts. These are mainly energy, water use and waste disposal and of course the holiday brochures we produce each year. At our Head Office we are focusing on reducing our energy usage and carbon emissions and of course recycling is law.
Being a good partner
As part of being a good partner we aim to work with our suppliers to encourage them to be more sustainable. We audit our hotel suppliers under the Travelife Sustainability System. This scheme assesses hotels for environmental impact, staff relations and level of community support. Successful hotels can qualify for a bronze, silver or gold Travelife Award.
We also want to highlight excellence in sustainable tourism. That's why we act as headline sponsor of the Responsible Tourism Awards each year and through our own in-house ‘Partnership in Sustainability Award’.
We realise our suppliers face many challenges and are often not large businesses themselves. That's why we invest in destination initiatives that help make it easier for our suppliers to do the right thing. Some of the projects we are currently supporting are;
- A joint project with Oxfam and the Travel Foundation to help Caribbean farmers to grow more and encourage local hotels to buy it, supporting local economies and reducing the reliance on imported goods.
- Switch Off - Save Big; a project with the Travel Foundation to encourage Caribbean hoteliers to save energy and water.
- A Travel Foundation project in Kenya to empower local Maasai communities to earn a fair wage from tourism. The income generated helps the village to provide health care, fresh water and education for the community.
Giving something back
We are committed to helping youth shine by providing life changing opportunities for young people both in the UK and overseas. Through our Caribbean scholarships and support of numerous destination projects we are helping youth shine in whatever they choose to do.
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