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Oakley Court, a Victorian gothic mansion with 118 bedrooms and 33 acres of riverside grounds in Royal Windsor, Berkshire, has done the double, having already won the Sustainable Business Award at the Catey Awards 2017. It can now add a Hotel Catey to its collection after taking this year's title for Sustainable Hotel of the Year.
The Oakley Court works continuously to improve its environmental and social performance. The hotel monitors its energy, water and waste usage closely, and also keeps an eye on the local wildlife population to make sure it is doing all it can to minimise its impact on the environment.
The hotel takes a raft of measures to achieve this, including supplying sustainable modes of transport for guests, as well as offering electric car-charging stations at the hotel.
Self-drive electric boats are available to hire and there is complimentary boot and bike hire.
A Vivreau water system is in place in kitchens to allow guests to refill reusable water bottles, and eco showerheads and flow-saver devices in bathrooms have reduced water wastage by an average of 70%.
The hotel also collects rainwater to water its kitchen gardens, and it has installed a combined heat and power unit onsite to begin generating its own energy. All the lighting in the rooms and public areas has been replaced with LED bulbs for enhanced energy efficiency.
Team members are encouraged to join the hotel's green team, a group of volunteers from all hotel departments who actively look at ways to improve sustainable practises. They also undertake regular litter-picks of the grounds
and have created a green display in the bar to educate guests.
And the hotel hasn't just undertaken all of these measures because it is viewed as the right thing to do: a sustainable approach has also helped it to win business. It has been particularly effective when it comes to converting large conferences at the hotel, with many companies stating their preference for a 'green' venue and/or referring to their corporate responsibility policies, which require one.
Judges were impressed by these and many other efforts in a category they feel strongly does not receive enough interest from other hotel businesses. The fact that the Oakley Court has won the double should hopefully serve as an example to the rest of the sector.
Fairmont St Andrews
The Oakley Court Windsor
2016 Battlesteads Wark on Tyne, Northumberland
2015 Hub by Premier Inn London
2014 Red Carnation Hotels
2013 The Savoy London
2012 Lancaster London
2011 Battlesteads Wark on Tyne
2010 Langdale Great Langdale, Cumbria
2009 One Aldwych London
2008 Bedruthan Mawgan Porth, Cornwall
2007 Novotel London West