Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Amazing Green Hotels with LEED Certification

In the United States, for a hotel to truly be “green” it needs to earn the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Certification. LEED hotels are at the forefront of eco-friendly lodging, and they’re quite impressive. It takes a lot of dedication to run a hotel with the environment considered a top priority. If you’re interesting in checking out some of these innovative accommodations on your next road trip, here are some amazing green hotels in America.

Bardessono Hotel, Restaurant and Spa

Yountville, California

The Bardessono has the impressive distinction of being an LEED Platinum certified hotel, and it’s one of only three in the U.S. to receive the high distinction. Located in a popular winre region of California, this 62-room hotel is incredibly luxurious. Not only is it a high-class hotel, it’s a place that was built with nontoxic, recycled materials and reclaimed wood. The hotel is heated and cooled with an underground, geothermal system, and there are 940 solar panels on the roof. Guest rooms use organic bedding and motion sensor lighting. Organic, local ingredients and products are used all throughout the hotel, and water is conserved whenever possible. There are even carbon-fiber bicycles and gardens on site.

The New York Palace

New York City

This incredible 55-story hotel in midtown Manhattan is high-class and exquisite. It has 899 guest rooms and 1.2 million square feet, and for its sheer size it does an excellent job at staying eco-friendly. It earned an LEED Gold certification and uses 100 percent renewable energy. The New York Palace also purchases enough renewable energy certificates to offset all of its electricity use. Organic ingredients are used in cooking, and natural, eco-friendly products are used throughout the hotel. In addition, gently used amenities are donated to the Clean the World nonprofit organization. Details on Clean the World recycling programs can be found online at CleantheWorld.org.

Hotel Terra Jackson Hole

Teton Village, Wyoming

The Hotel Terra is a modern, sleekly-designed and LEED-certified hotel. It is probably the most eco-friendly hotel in the entire United States. This hotel has so many green initiatives that it’s impossible to list even a fraction of them. It was designed from the ground up with green practices in mind; 90 percent of the rooms have windows and 80 percent of steel building materials were recycled. Dual flush toilets and low-flow faucets greatly reduce the use of water throughout the hotel. Recycling is done whenever possible, and organic materials are used everywhere. There are even soap dishes made from recycled glass and bamboo wastebaskets.

Hyatt at Olive 8

Seattle, Washington

This Silver LEED-certified hotel is trendy and cool. It’s located in downtown Seattle, which is known to be an eco-friendly city all around. The Elaia spa is a great place to relax and receive organic and all-natural beauty treatments. After it was constructed, 95 percent of the construction debris was recycled. The building is made of an all-glass exterior, and the landscaping uses a highly efficient irrigation system that saves 24,000 gallons of water per year. There are also low-flow fixtures and dual flush toilets, and those combined with other water-saving initiatives conserve up to 2.4 million gallons of water per year.

Passport at the ready, Maddie Sharp loves to travel and live green. A sun junkie, her favorite places to stay are Cabo San Lucas Resorts and Bahamas Hotels.


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