Fairmont Debuts Eco-Meet at All Hotels – Conferences Can Now Go Green

Businesses are embracing Fairmont Hotel and Resorts' respect for the environment and promotion of sustainable tourism by rallying behind its Eco-Meet program now available at all of its properties.

A staunch advocate of environmental stewardship within the travel and tourism industry, Fairmont was the first major hotel company in North America to include green business practices as an intrinsic part of its operations. Another major milestone as the pioneer of going green is the brand-wide launch of the Eco-Meet program – an environmentally friendly conferencing program, intended to minimize harm to the environment during meetings, conferences and similar events.

Eco-Meet was developed as a “green meeting” and conference planning option. In this way, meeting planners can organize conferences and events that consider the environment, result in reduced waste, and also conserve valuable resources.

Michelle White, Director, Environmental Affairs, states, “We recognize that many corporations, including Fairmont Hotels & Resorts, have adopted a mandate of environmental responsibility.” She continues, “When selecting a venue for a green event, meeting planners will consider all aspects of the hotel or resort's accommodation, operations, programs and policies as part of our Eco-Meet initiative.”

Meeting planners wanting to “green” their events can work with Fairmont's knowledgeable staff to tailor aspects of this unique program, which consists of four key components, to suit their needs:

• Eco-service provides “disposable-free” food and beverage services and recycling stations in the meeting rooms. This service is an important element to a greener meeting and, for example, includes china and cutlery used instead of disposal items, linen napkins instead of paper, and centerpieces that are edible/organic or made from reusable items such as silk flowers. White boards are used rather than paper flip charts.

• Eco-accommodation offers in-room information, recycling bins, optional sheet and towel replacement at select properties, energy-efficient lighting, and water-conserving showerheads, toilets and tap aerators.

• Eco-cuisine menus incorporate local, seasonal and organically grown foods wherever possible. Special menus for Eco-Meet can also include a 50-percent reduction in animal proteins, supplemented by vegetable proteins at meal functions. Fairmont properties having their own herb gardens or the availability of the seasonings locally feature dishes with those ingredients. The emphasis is on healthy, environmentally friendly and delicious food.

• Eco-programming provides activities and guest-speakers to complement the Eco-Meet experience. Whether it's a keynote address, a full-day team building eco-experience or something in-between, Fairmont's eco-programming educates and informs meeting delegates, while providing innovative and exceptional meeting services. There are also paperless services available for events including a dedicated TV channel to provide information and updates to delegates, electronic paperless check-in/checkout and e-mailed contracts and information used where possible. Fairmont will also assist meeting planners to offset their event's greenhouse gas emissions by purchasing green tags/energy certificates.

Eco-Meet is available at all Fairmont properties. Meeting planners can also download a copy of Fairmont's new green meeting checklist at www.fairmont.com/ecomeet.