Starhotel E.c.ho. wins Sustainability Award

Starhotel Echo Milan

International hotel design was celebrated in London last night, when nine of Europe’s notable hotels claimed top honours at the prestigious European Hotel Design Awards.

This international celebration acknowledges the passion and vision of the architects, designers and developers of Europe’s most recently completed and outstanding hotel projects. BBC World News’ presenter, Mishal Husain hosted the ceremony which took place at the Park Plaza, Westminster Bridge London. Winning hotels included The Corinthia Hotel, The Mirror Hotel and Hotel Valentinerhof, with Superbude St Pauli in Hamburg stealing the show with three acclaimed awards.

Green Hotelier would like to give special congratulations to Starhotel E.c.ho., Milan, which won the sustainability award.  The name of this ecological contemporary hotel reflects its core premise - that great design and environmental awareness can go hand in hand. Whilst all this year’s entries were technically competent, the Starhotel E.C.ho won the judges’ vote for being the most holistic solution, not only delivering a sustainable performance but also making this a sustainable guest experience. The energy saving figures are impressive, as are the ways the guest experience is influenced by a desire to reuse materials, source locally and bring nature into the public areas. Sustainability is clearly a part of the whole guest experience and not just kept to the back of house.

Speaking of the motivation behind E.c.ho., the CEO of Starhotels Elisabetta Fabri states, ‘Starhotels is sending the important signal that even in the hotel industry, we can use technologies that respect our ecosystem and help to curb climate change.'

Every aspect of E.c.ho's design is mindful of reducing the property's ecological footprint. Examples include the 125 square metres of solar panels that provide energy to light the corridors and public spaces, reducing carbon dioxide emissions by 11 tonnes annually. The high-efficiency condensing boilers reduce emissions by a further 75 tonnes per year, while water recovery systems reduce water consumption by 20%.

Under the direction of designer Andrea Auletta, E.c.ho.'s interiors employ eco-friendly and recycled materials throughout, from the fragrant cedar-log tables in the lobby - made using wood from sustainable forests - to the energy efficient glass in the conservatory. The hotel's lighting follows the natural rhythms of daylight, intelligent climatisation systems constantly balance comfort with energy consumption, and even the mattresses in the 143 are eco-friendly.

Nature lies at the heart of the hotel literally as well as figuratively. A large terrace looks out onto a central garden and a Renaissance chapel by the celebrated architect of St Peter's Basilica, Donato Bramante, creating an outdoor haven that feels a million miles from city life. Meanwhile, diners at Orto Restaurant will discover menus that change in tune with the seasons and use organic produce wherever possible.

For more information see the winners of the European Hotel Design Awards and Starhotel E.c.ho 
For more examples of sustainable hotels see our Sustainable Best Practice Case Studies

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