Element Hotels continue to drive eco-conscious initiatives

The new Sistine solar canopy

The new Sistine solar canopy

The Starwood brand with a clear sustainability focus has announced a new collaboration to enhance its energy saving programme.

Element Hotels, part of Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, has begun a partnership with Sistine Solar, Inc; a company that uses innovative design to change the way the world thinks about solar power. The company will produce a one-of-a-kind solar canopy for the Element brand.

Element Dallas Fort Worth Airport will be the first hotel to feature a nature-themed, custom designed charging station, which allows guests and locals to relax as they recharge their devices through the sun-driven solar panels. The hotel also hopes to use the canopy as a means of raising awareness amongst guests of their sustainable initiatives and the need for more responsible travel and tourism. The chic design furthers Starwood’s drive to work with designers to bring a contemporary feel to its eco-friendly programmes, making them visually appealing to guests as well as functional and responsible.

The collaboration between Element and Sistine seems like a good match. Whilst Element is striving to mix contemporary design philosophy with eco-minded sensibilities, Sistine has transformed the dull, familiar aesthetic of solar technology. By using techniques from a wide range of disciplines – including mosaic art, solar photovoltaics, and optics - Sistine has developed SolarSkin, a patent-pending technology to create high-efficiency solar panels of any design, pattern or colour. The one-of-a-kind solar canopy at Element Dallas Fort Worth Airport is inspired by the Element brand ethos that modern design flows from nature. Its unique design proves that green can, and should be, gorgeous.

“Built for today’s eco-conscious traveller, the Element brand has completely changed the face of extended stay with its light-filled atmosphere, eco-minded design and commitment to innovation,” said Brian McGuinness , Senior Vice President of Specialty Select Brands for Starwood. “Our collaboration with Sistine Solar allows us to deliver an efficient custom charging solution that is not only great for the environment, but great for the overall guest experience.”

Built as an off-grid installation, the unique Solar Canopy charging station designed in partnership with Brooklyn-based architect Ajmal Aqtash, will allow guests to sit in the shade, socialise and relax outside the hotel as they recharge their personal electronic devices. Additionally, the canopy has integrated LEDs that allow for night-time lighting and enjoyment.

“We strongly believe in the transformative power of design,” says Ido Salama, Co-Founder of Sistine Solar. “In working with a forward-thinking and powerful brand like Element, we see a tremendous opportunity to radically change people’s perceptions of renewable energy. Instead of hiding panels where no one will see them, as is often the case, we design our panels to be admired from up-close and from afar. We marry form and function to produce a one-of-a-kind guest experience. The magic happens the moment a guest plugs in their device, admires the beautiful nature-inspired design, and makes the connection that our sun is providing clean and renewable energy. In this way, we hope people will begin to see sustainability in a new light, accelerating the adoption of clean energy.”

As Starwood’s eco-innovation lab, Element is the first major hotel brand to mandate that all properties pursue the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification for high-performance buildings. Offering bright, modern design and sustainability-minded sensibilities, Element Hotels are meant to fuel a life of balance while on the road, particularly when traveling for extended periods of time. The brand is a leader in the eco-innovation space and continues to pilot latest developments in sustainable technology. There are plans to roll the solar canopy out globally to Element’s nearly 20 hotels around the world.

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