Google EMEA Business & Operations President Matt Brittin recently praised the Kallichoron Art Boutique Hotel on the Greek island of Astypalea for its commitment to sustainable practices.
Speaking at the recent 7th Delphi Economic Forum in a session focusing on the future of tourism, Brittin spoke about Google’s role in supporting tourism businesses in their aim to accelerate their sustainable development.
During a discussion with Greek Tourism Minister Vassilis Kikilias, Brittin said the Kallichoron is an example of a hotel that has focused on sustainable practices.
“The Kallichoron on Astypalea – an art hotel – has had sustainable practices for years (solar panels, eco-friendly detergents, etc.) and they are working with us to tell the world about it. They use Google Analytics and advertising to reach people searching for their products and this way they have increased their bookings by 14% year over year,” said Google President, EMEA Business & Operations.
Located in the Chora of Astypalea, the Kallichoron Art Boutique Hotel was recently included in the Achievements of Grow with Google program, which provides training and tools to help businesses grow.
Using digital marketing and Google Analytics, Kallichoron was able to communicate the hotel’s sustainable concept exactly to the desired market: travelers interested in sustainability.
“Caring for the environment is a life attitude for us and an integral part of our philosophy here at Kallichoron,” says the hotel’s sustainability manager, Caroline Alkalai.
Kallichoron follows the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and focuses on promoting well-being at all ages; prudent management; responsible consumption; efficient use of raw materials and energy; protect the environment and natural resources; recycling; protect the cultural identity and cultural heritage of the island; and engage in collaborations and synergies.
“At the same time, we adopt ‘green’ practices to save natural resources in perfect harmony with the natural environment of Astypalea,” added Alkalai.
The Benefits of Kallichoron Going “Green”
By conducting an extensive environmental management program, Kallichoron has managed to achieve a number of significant benefits, such as diversifying its business and attracting responsible travelers with social and environmental concerns; establish a relationship of trust with its hosts by offering a better quality tourist product; strengthen the “Kallichoron” brand by increasing its reputation as a responsible company.
In addition, the hotel had access to financial instruments available for companies focused on sustainable development.
Kallichoron’s philosophy is also reflected in the green key international ecolabel that it has acquired for the environmental policy it has been pursuing since 2015.
“Till today, Kallichoron Art Boutique Hotel is the only hotel with an eco-label on the island,” Alkalai said.
Kallichoron is also the only hotel in Greece to have introduced a Carbon Footprint Calculator (CFC) in cooperation with Wayaj for customers to reduce their carbon footprint when traveling. Wayaj is a travel app designed to explore and book sustainable and socially responsible vacations around the world.
Kallichoron’s goals for 2022
Kallichoron’s priority is to continuously save energy, water and conduct proper waste management to reduce its carbon footprint for years to come.
According to Alkalai, the hotel’s goals for 2022 include: a 2% reduction in water consumption in the field of water conservation; sale of reusable cups for drinks in the field of materials and resources; cooking oil recycling in the field of waste management; and the realization of a 5% energy reduction in the field of energy management.
“The benefits of adopting green practices are numerous and include raising environmental awareness among guests and preserving the island’s natural resources by enhancing sustainable development,” she said.
It is worth mentioning that one of the highlights of Kallichoron is its “Grandma’s Breakfast” menu, which offers guests a personalized breakfast tray with selections of their choice. All products are local.
The Kallichoron Art Boutique Hotel has received numerous awards and accolades for being an innovative leader in sustainable development practices, running a responsible business and its safety and security program on the island of Astypalea.
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