The Westin Riverfront Resort & Spa in Beaver Creek is the first hotel in Colorado to earn the important Silver status of LEED Certification. How difficult is it to get this green travel award? Only nine hotels in the U.S. have earned it, including the Westin Riverfront, which opened early in 2009.
To celebrate this achievement, the resort is offering a special The Westin Riverfront Green Package, to save the green in your wallet as well as the environment. Right now, during peak winter ski season, vacation package rates start at $319 for a studio suite and includes some green goodies –
- Complimentary valet parking when you arrive with more than two people in the vehicle or in a hybrid vehicle,
- Participation in Westin’s “Make a Green Choice” program, which pays you back for opting out of getting fresh towels and linens each day. Sign up for your choice of a $5 resort gift card for each night you participate or 500 Starpoints for each stay,
- The Westin also will purchase Verified Carbon Credits to offset the carbon emissions from a round-trip drive to the Vail Valley from metro Denver, purchased from Sustainable Travel International
The Westin Riverfront is eco-friendly from the ground up. Here’s just some of what makes it a green hotel:
- Half the resort’s electricity is from renewable sources, including wind power,
- Nearly half the total building materials and products it uses are from within 500 miles, which reduced both transportation costs and CO2 emissions,
- 10% of construction materials are from recycled objects, such as the recycled tires used for the hotel roof,
- There’s a sophisticated heating and cooling system that lets the front desk adjust the temperature in individual rooms when a guest checks in or out, so unoccupied rooms are heated or cooled when nobody is using them,
- The hotel’s Spa Anjali is Colorado’s first dedicated green spa, using only environmentally-friendly products and organic spa linens.
Full disclosure: I’m visiting the Westin Riverfront Resort & Spa in January, 2010, and will share more news about this green hotel in Beaver Creek, Colorado. Unless I’m too exhausted from pounding the powder on my skis. Beaver Creek has a variety of terrain for all levels of skiing and snowboarding, and it’s a family-friendly resort.
The hotel also built its own Riverfront Express Gondola, to deliver guests and local residents to the Beaver Creek ski area in less than three minutes, which reduces car and shuttle bus traffic, noise and pollution. And this gondola is free.