Whitbread Rolls Out Plans for New Green Hotel & Low-carbon Restaurant

January 11, 2010 // Franchising.com // Whitbread, the UK's leading hotel and restaurant group, has confirmed details of its plans for its second green hotel and its first low-carbon restaurant.

Burgess Hill Premier Inn, in West Sussex, represents the latest evolution in environmentally-friendly budget hotels. It follows Whitbread's pioneering green hotel pilot in Tamworth, Staffordshire - the UK's first green budget hotel which opened its doors to guests in December 2008.

The 60-bedroom Premier Inn at Burgess Hill, due to open in Autumn 2010, will adopt the best-performing green technologies trialled in Tamworth to deliver 70% carbon and 60% water savings.

Adjacent to the hotel, Whitbread will develop its first low-carbon restaurant - a 220-cover Beefeater open grill restaurant.

The investment forms part of Whitbread's corporate sustainability programme, 'Good Together', which was launched in December 2009 along with a pledge to reduce carbon emissions by 26% by 2020.

The Burgess Hill development will include:

  • Ground-source heat pumps using the earth's natural energy to provide heating and cooling cool as well as hot water
  • Rainwater harvesting and grey water recycling providing 100% of the hotel's toilet water use and saving 20% of the hotel's entire water use
  • High-efficiency thermal insulation
  • Low-flow showerheads delivering the feel and effect of a powerful shower without the associated water loss
  • Heat-recovery shower systems capturing and reusing energy used by the boilers
  • Automated light controls with intelligent sensors turning lights off when not in use
  • Sun pipes reducing the need for artificial lighting by increasing natural light

Both the Premier Inn hotel and Beefeater restaurant at Burgess Hill will be built using timber frame construction methods from sustainably sourced wood. Timber frame has the lowest carbon content of any commercially-available building material and its flexible design allows for high levels of insulation to achieve maximum energy efficiency.

Alan Parker, CEO of Whitbread, said: "Burgess Hill's clever combination of high-tech environmental features and advanced construction methods will allow us to achieve truly impressive results in terms of cutting carbon and conserving water. The hotel will include many of the best performing technologies pioneered at our first green hotel in Tamworth.

"Our low-carbon Beefeater restaurant at Burgess Hill is another first for Whitbread and brings us another step closer to achieving a 26% reduction in carbon emissions by 2020."

Today's announcement coincides with the start of a special Good Together Week, bringing Whitbread people together for the first time to focus on how everyone can be involved to make a difference. Involving customers will also become a core component of the Good Together strategy with Whitbread aiming to help its guests play an active part in achieving sustainability targets.

Burgess Hill Premier Inn & Beefeater (PDF)

About Good Together:

Good Together is Whitbread's corporate sustainability strategy and was launched on 7 December. It focuses on seven themes, setting targets for achievement and behavioural change in each. These themes are: environment, employee engagement, sourcing of products and services, standards and performance measurement, customer engagement, health and community.

Good Together includes the following initial targets:

  • Reduce carbon emissions by 26% by 2020
  • Achieve 80% of waste diverted from landfill from Whitbread Hotels & Restaurants sites by February 2012
  • 100% of all Costa Coffee production to be Rainforest Alliance certified by June 2010
  • Launch purpose built 'green hotel and restaurant' at Burgess Hill, West Sussex (to open in Autumn 2010)
  • Achieve 3,000 qualifications from Whitbread Hotels & Restaurant Apprenticeship scheme. 400 Costa learners trained by the end of 2011
  • Raise £1 million for WaterAid
  • Enable 15,000 children to be educated as part of the Costa Foundation

About Whitbread:

Whitbread PLC is the UK's largest hotel and restaurant group operating market-leading businesses in the budget hotels and restaurant sectors. Its well-loved brands are Premier Inn, Beefeater, Brewers Fayre, Table Table, Taybarns and Costa Coffee.

Whitbread PLC employs over 33,000 people and serves 9 million customers every month in its 1,800 outlets across the UK.

In the financial year ended 27th August 2009, Whitbread PLC reported a 3.1% increase in Group Revenue to £703.3 million and Underlying Profit before tax of £118.2 million down 2.7%.

Whitbread PLC is listed on the London Stock Exchange. It is also a member of the FTSE4Good Index.

About Premier Inn:

Award winning Premier Inn, is the UK's biggest and fastest-growing hotel brand with over 580 budget hotels and more than 40,000 rooms across the UK. Rooms are available from just £29. Premier Inn bedrooms feature an en-suite bathroom, TV, and internet access for business guests. Premier Inn offers customers a 'Good Night Guarantee' of a good quality room, comfortable surroundings and friendly service, which is unique amongst Britain's leading hotel chains.

Premier Inn was the first Britain-wide hotel group to sign up with national tourist board VisitBritain; this means Premier Inn is now part of a new quality assessment scheme, specially created for budget accommodation.

In 2008 Premier Inn launched in Dubai and in 2009 opened in India. On a domestic front, Premier Inn is set to be the largest provider of budget hotels in London by the 2012 Olympics.

About Beefeater:

Beefeater launched in 1974, and is a popular family favourite. Its warm and welcoming restaurants are ideal for any occasion, from a quick bite to eat, through to meeting up with friends or celebrating with family. Beefeater's aim is to offer guests a large selection of freshly chargrilled food, which is expertly cooked by experienced chargrill chefs.

Premier Inn and Beefeater support WaterAid, the international charity whose mission is to overcome poverty by enabling the world's poorest people to gain access to safe water, sanitation and hygiene education.

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