Hotel Case Study

Parkroyal on St Kilda Road

Contact:	Caitlin Boyd
Position:	Executive Secretary
		Ph: (03) 529 8888
		Fx: (03) 510 4297
Postal address:	PO Box 6533
		St Kilda Rd Central
		St Kilda 3004

Putting environmental learning into practice

Description of Project

A four to five star hotel, the Parkroyal on St Kilda Rd involved the whole of its staff in 1993 in an environmental audit. This was achieved through their participation in an Environmental Education Strategy, focusing on identifying, and putting into practice, achievable actions aimed at reducing the hotel's environmental impact and generating operational savings.

A 220 room hotel, the Parkroyal on St Kilda Rd is part of the Southern Pacific Hotel Corporation (SPHC), the largest hotel group in Australasia. One of five SPHC hotels in Melbourne, the Parkroyal on St Kilda Rd is establishing a profile as the city's 'entertainment hotel' offering packages to, for instance, Phantom of the Opera or NBL Basketball.

Environmental education has not only led to a comprehensive audit which identified substantial cost saving, but has also been seen by management to have led to improved marketing opportunities and better staff morale. "Most people have a genuine motivation to save the environment," claims Ann-Marie Devine, the manager of Corporate Environmental Management.

"Education which gives them the tools for action is of vital importance to the success of projects."

The long term aim is to disseminate Parkroyal's Environmental Education Strategy throughout the other SPHC hotels in Melbourne, and eventually throughout Australia.

Process Undertaken

The Environmental Education Strategy was developed through a partnership between the Parkroyal on St Kilda Rd and the Victorian Environment Education Council. Corporate Environmental Management Pty. Ltd. (CEM) have facilitated the project from its inception, carrying out the initial staff training sessions using basic environmental education principles.

The focus of the environmental learning is on developing practical actions which reduce the Parkroyal's environmental impact. Action and learning are seen as happening together.

Initially, the Environmental Education Strategy Committee met once a week to discuss ideas raised by staff, and to bring in information from environmental specialists. A questionnaire and letter were given to 200 of the hotel's regular guests to spark awareness of what was going on and how they might be involved. To arouse interest on a wider scale, staff wore badges proclaiming 'Parkroyal on St Kilda Rd - Caring for the Environment.' Many guests commented favourably.

Initiatives which have been implemented as part of the environmental program include a comprehensive energy audit carried out by the hotel's Maintenance Engineer; the introduction of energy efficient light globes; and the establishment of a comprehensive paper recycling system.

In an effort to go back to basics, CEM gets its clients to examine their purchasing procedures. CEM "went through the rubbish bins" to identify areas of waste, said CEM's manager, Ann-Marie Devine. The hotel has since sent a letter to all its suppliers asking them to produce a list of their environmentally responsible products for future use by the hotel. Xerox, for instance, responded positively by offering to supply recycled paper suitable for use by the hotel's photocopier. Chlorine-free chemicals were found for the hotel's dishwashers. Negotiations continue with other hotel suppliers.

CEM continues to meet with the Parkroyal Environmental Education Strategy Committee. The Committee has identified the critical factors for the success of the project as "the strong support and active participation of staff from all areas and levels of the hotel and the availability of a facilitator with appropriate time and expertise to assist the project's planning and implementation."

Changes Made and Savings


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