Chicago Hotel Implements Sustainability Initiatives to Help Keep the City Green

“The Earth has a deadline,” at least in accordance to Metronome’s 62-foot-huge, 15-digit electronic clock hanging above Manhattan.  

For a lot more than 20 yrs, Metronome’s clock has caught the notice of passersby on their way to do the job, looking up to verify how considerably time they have still left on their lunch break or before the subway leaves the station. 

Now, Metronome’s clock is counting down the seconds we have still left on Earth. 

The Climate Clock is the function of two American artists, Gan Golan and Andrew Boyd, and serves as a reminder of the significant window of motion individuals have to avoid the results of world wide warming from turning out to be irreversible. 

Chicago Marriott Downtown Magnificent Mile's Tulips
Chicago Marriott Downtown Superb Mile’s Tulips

As of now, there are much less than eight yrs remaining, and lodges like Chicago Marriott Downtown Impressive Mile are making conscious attempts to do their aspect. 

“Instead of just expressing we are executing anything, what are we definitely executing for [sustainability]?” questioned Dan Egan, director of product sales and internet marketing at Chicago Marriott Downtown Spectacular Mile. “Marriott, as a total, is dedicated to shielding the setting. This is essential not just for our hosts and our guests, but for long term generations.” 

[Related: The Future of Sustainable Business Travel in the Meetings Industry]

Chicago Marriott Downtown Outstanding Mile breaks its sustainability initiatives into four types, represented by the acronym Prevent: Help you save, Keep track of, Improve and Participate. 

“We help you save and preserve electricity, track and food stuff source, so where is it coming from? Improve and be efficient, so what equipment can aid our carbon footprint?” Egan elaborated. “But, then, we also need to participate and get motion.” 


Chicago Marriott Downtown Outstanding Mile’s strength-conservation efforts grew to become distinguished in 2017 following the set up of 12 320W solar panels on the hotel’s ninth-floor rooftop. In accordance to the condition of Illinois’ formulation guideline, the panels conserve more than 5,700 kWh per year. 

“That permits us to provide sufficient electricity to retain the equivalent of our wellness club,” Egan stated. 

Chicago Marriott Downtown Magnificent Mile's Solar Panels
Chicago Marriott Downtown Impressive Mile’s Photo voltaic Panels

Just lately, the resort underwent a $190 million renovation. Just one improvement provided air handlers. 

“It appears like a smaller issue, but if you imagine about how much electricity it will take to keep this making and to cope with air conditioning and heat, if you are able to equilibrium that off and not use as a great deal, it saves rather a bit from the environment in common,” Egan stated. 

Chicago Marriott Downtown Wonderful Mile also carried out initiatives to conserve water. On chaotic weekends, the 1,200-home resort can welcome up to 4,000 individuals and its toilets flush almost continually. 

“We’ve converted [toilets] to 1.6 gallons, chopping our energy in 50 % when it arrives to water use and squander all round,” Egan said. 

[Related: Are Net-Zero Carbon Events the Future?]


As a 95% scratch kitchen, Chicago Marriott Downtown Spectacular Mile will get most of its foods from distributors that stay clear of making use of chemicals to develop crops and treat animals. It’s a precedence, in accordance to Egan, but what is more vital is building confident the uneaten foodstuff does not go to waste. 

“When we actually go through and make use of all that foods and the right things, we do composting,” Egan mentioned. “We get up to 20,000 pounds of compost in a 12 months, and we give that to the metropolis of Chicago to use in the parks.” 

Chicago Marriott Downtown Magnificent Mile's Honey Bee Chefs
Chicago Marriott Downtown Outstanding Mile’s Honey Bee Chefs

The city also uses the compost together Michigan Avenue in the flower beds lining the streets, and the resort keeps its individual backyard on the ninth-floor rooftop as nicely, next to its photo voltaic panels and four honeybee hives. 

“If you assume about how they pollinate all the flowers and crops in the ecosystem, that alone allows increase a ton of our organic sources,” Egan said. “We’ve acquired 4 colonies onsite, as nicely as gardens with seasonal organic herbs and vegetables, so a whole lot of our meals and beverage choices we get from correct up there.” 

The resort also cooks with all recyclable cooking oils and employs paper straws. 


It can be hard to hit all the nails on the head when it will come to sustainability initiatives, especially in resorts seeing countless numbers of individuals coming in and out the doors each and every working day. When Chicago Marriott Downtown Superb Mile understands not just about every issue has a answer, there are constantly other approaches to help. 

By putting in LED lighting, the resort will save on changing bulbs as frequently as was deemed needed ahead of, which helps the atmosphere by electrical power conservation and lowered producing implications. The lodge also purchased “linenless” tables for meetings and activities, which existing well without the need of the need for linens, lowering the amount of money of laundry the hotel has to complete every day. 

In just about every guest lavatory is a sign near the towel rack inquiring friends to contemplate reusing and hanging their towels to dry, and there is an opportunity to recycle in each and every room.  

[Related: Sustainable Venues for Greener Meetings in the Pacific Northwest]


Although the program is in spot, Egan explained, it is just as crucial to make guaranteed attendees are informed of its existence. 

“When you perform in a lodge, clients usually ask—whether it’s a group consumer or it is an individual—what our sustainability application is at the resort,” Egan said. “Meetings are quite critical. A whole lot of firms and associations are incredibly concerned in sustainability, and when they come out, they want to know what we’re likely to do for it.” 

Chicago Marriott Downtown Magnificent Mile's Honey Bee Chefs
Chicago Marriott Downtown Outstanding Mile’s Honey Bee Chefs

For meetings and events in specific, Chicago Marriott Downtown Outstanding Mile set together 100% recycled notepads and pens, as nicely as digital menus to lower paper waste and reusable lunch packing containers and drinking water bottles. 

“If you are a meeting planner, you recall the days when you would get this huge print-out at the stop of the working day, virtually an inch thick, and you would have to go via it all and evaluate it and make corrections ahead of offering it back,” Egan explained. “More printing would just take position that is electronic now.” 

When the lodge and Chicago’s devotion to sustainability is commendable, Egan understands that the hotel’s and city’s endeavours will consistently demand from customers innovation and awareness going forward.   

“It’s the willingness of the resort and the metropolis,” Egan mentioned. “… There’s a ton of factors we can do to support.” 


Read through this next: F&B Revolution: From Upcycled Foodstuff to Reducing Meat at Conferences

Karen J. Simmons

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