My sister lives in California and we are looking to go and visit. Unfortunately, her apartment isn’t big enough to accommodate a family of five, so we are exploring some hotel options. Of course, we face our usual travel obstacles including healthy food options and choosing a hotel that won’t gross anyone out! Actually, I’d like to take things a step further and set my sites a little higher than simply “not gross”! Luckily, I have stumbled across a great option that not only isn’t “gross” but it is also eco friendly.
Travel out west when you live on the east coast comes with its own unique set of challenges. Things become increasingly challenging when you factor three kids into the equation. The logistics alone can be a nightmare because a lot of hotel rooms only accommodate four people. My kids are too big to be squashed into a bed together and yet not big enough to have a separate room. And then there are the general “grossness factors” associated with a hotel stay. Not only will my kids whine about the breakfast, but they have all caught sight of those exposees where hotels are caught not changing the sheets for a new customer. I also think about cleaners they use as well as the products they offer such as the shampoos and soaps. I always end up packing all of my own stuff and then my husband wonders why our bags are so heavy! I simply do what we do as parents and that is improvise. This is fine, but wouldn’t it be nice to travel without the headache?
The Hotel Search Is Over
And then thanks to the divinity of the universe or the beauty of the internet (you decide) the answer falls in my lap. Apparently, there is a group of hotels in California, as well as Arizona, that are as green as their name. They are called the GreenTree Inn and they are not your average hotel chain. Their company has a green mission that involves several initiatives to help keep the planet clean. How cool is that? So what exactly is this company doing that makes it so appealing? Luckily, there is a nice long list of really cool action steps they have taken to fulfill the needs of the green traveler while leaving less of a carbon footprint on the planet. As soon as I learned about the steps that this hotel chain is taking to help the environment, I immediately booked them for our trip.
Bath Amenities at the Green Tree Inn
We have all seen those little shampoo and conditioner bottles in our travels. That’s a lot of plastic that ultimately collects in our landfills if they aren’t pushed along the proper recycling channels. The GreenTree Inn has dealt with this issue by offering hotel guests tamper proof bottles that can be refilled so there is less plastic trash. It also prevents wasting the actual shampoo, conditioner, or soap. Mini bottles are often left behind with product still remaining. That ultimately ends up in the trash. These refillable bottles make it so you only take what you need and there is nothing extra to end up in the garbage. In addition to being environmentally conscious, this is definitely a great money saver.
Powerful LED Lights
The light-emitting diode (LED) is an energy-efficient way to shed some light on the subject of environmental responsibility. This fast-developing lighting technology is a great eco friendly option. Quality LED light bulbs last longer, are more durable, and offer comparable or better light quality than other types of lighting. Green Tree Hotels use LED lighting in all of their rooms and throughout the hotel. This has saved the hotel 80% in costs relative to energy used for lighting. The beauty of this is that some of those savings then get passed on to the customer. We started changing out our lights at home for LEDs quite a while back and we have definitely seen the positive impact on our wallets.
My kids love having breakfast at the hotel when we are on vacation. They love to have a ton of options, but I’m not a big fan of the plastic cutlery and the foam plates that will sit in a landfill for an eternity. The Green Tree Hotels use cups, lids, plates, forks, spoons, knives, etc that work and appear like regular plastic items but will break down much faster than your typical plastic products. While I don’t use throw away dinnerware in my home for everyday use, I do use it for birthday parties. So then my guilt got the best of me and I went searching for some biodegradable cups, plates, cutlery, etc and of course I found them on Amazon because you can find just about anything there! My kids will be so proud of me. I’m just happy that my daughter has denounced all things princess and won’t be upset by the boring plates without a design!
Green Tree Hotels also know the importance of recycling. They make it their business to reduce waste in whatever ways possible. Recycling plays such an important role in reducing your carbon footprint on the earth. As small business owners, I have seen the potential for a huge amount of waste and recycling is definitely helpful. Now if you look at a large business, such as a hotel chain, it’s hard to imagine what gets throws away. The paper waste alone is probably off the charts. I personally feel that recycling is pretty easy once your get your systems in place. After that, it just becomes a good habit. I’m sure it’s a lot more difficult on a larger scale, so kudos to all the businesses out there who take the recycling initiative.
It’s nice to know that there are safe and eco friendly options for travel. I love seeing businesses take the initiative to make greener choices that have a positive impact on the environment. If you are planning a trip to Arizona or California, you should definitely check out a GreenTree Hotel. Happy Travels!!!