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Plaza Athénée Bangkok, a Royal Méridien Hotel receives ISO 20121 sustainability event management certification

Following an extensive systems assessment, Plaza Athénée Bangkok, a Royal Méridien Hotel, has announced its successful completion of the final stage of ISO 20121 certification, making it the first ISO 20121 accredited hotel in the world. ISO 20121 certified the hotel for Sustainability Event Management System for the planning and delivery of sustainable meetings.

The comprehensive system audits covered every aspect of the hotel’s operations and was independently conducted by SGS (Thailand) Limited, one of the world’s leading inspection, verification, testing and certification companies.

“We are very pleased to have successfully implemented ISO 20121 standards because we believe that economic growth and the wellbeing of society are inextricably tied to the health of the environment,” explained Ms. ChooLeng Goh, General Manager of the Plaza Athénée Bangkok, a Royal Méridien Hotel. “This demonstrates how we embrace our responsibility for environmental, social and economic stewardship and are committed to integrating these practices and sustainability principles into our core business strategy.”

ISO 20121 is a sustainability event management system designed to help event organizers improve the sustainability of their activities while creating a more sustainable environment, economic and social. Since the hotel began implementing its Green Initiatives in Q1 2012, ISO 20121 was the next logical step given the large number of events that are held in the hotel each year.

As an individual hotel and as part of Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide Inc., ISO 20121 certification testifies to the hotel’s commitment to doing more to consume less and thereby care for the planet. It also complements Starwood’s global focus on reducing energy use by 30% and water consumption by 20% by 2020.

The hotel’s green management efforts in 2013 have been yielding encouraging results. As of July, consumption of electricity had been cut by 9.4%, water by 5.03%, and paper by 4.9% year-on-year. Carbon footprint profiling revealed a 47.05% reduction in printer ink consumption and a 25.0% reduction in plastic bottle use. Moreover, our customers are showing increasing empathy with the cause with seven Green Meeting Packages being booked for meetings, conferences and other events year-to-date.

Sustainability is about how an organisation maintains commercial success while contributing to a stronger and more just society by reducing its impact on the environment. To achieve ISO 20121, the hotel had to show that it has considered all economic, social and environmental issues relevant to its operations. The mission includes helping Thai suppliers by buying local products and showing others how to be sustainable.

Adopting ISO 20121 brings the hotel several internal benefits. Clarity of purpose and strategy gains a more energised and aligned workforce. More integrated management gains improved efficiencies. Simpler and more effective systems result. Staff motivation is boosted, aiding recruitment and retention. The hotel’s reputation is enhanced and relations with key stakeholders with similar values are strengthened. Material, waste and energy costs are saved. Carbon emissions are reduced across the supply chain and the hotel’s position in the community is strengthened.

A Sustainability Event Management System Plan specific to the hotel’s MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conventions, Exhibitions) business invites customers to contribute to environment, economic and social sustainability while still enjoying successful events and delightful experiences. Features of the hotel’s “Green Meeting Package” include tables and chairs without linen, setting up stationery and water stations for consumption as-needed, air conditioning set at an ambient temperature of 25 degrees Celsius, avoiding unnecessary paper presentations and eco-friendly coffee and lunch breaks. Stylish settings are still maintained with all the required equipment, expert arrangements and delicious meals and refreshments.

Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau (TCEB) has also shown its extensive support in driving this initiative. TCEB set its sights on “Sustainability Thailand” as the next strategic goal for Thailand’s MICE industry. The leadership and commitment demonstrated by the industry collectively in promoting industry-wide compliance will contribute to its overall image and standing within the global industry and cement Thailand’s status as the destination of choice for international mega-events. “TCEB is confident that the achievement of the Plaza Athénée Bangkok, a Royal Méridien Hotel, today in being the first hotel in the world to be awarded ISO 20121 certification, will serve as a milestone that will encourage other industry players to redouble their efforts and reach toward the same level of compliance” said Mrs. Nichapa Yoswee, Director of MICE Capabilities Department of TCEB. Mrs. Nichapa is the key person driving this Green Meeting Initiative awareness within the industry in Thailand.

“The critical environment issues of air pollution, climate change and deforestation are increasing, it is crucial for us to work together to improve the environment of our planet and create a sustainable world for next generations.” continued the General Manager, ChooLeng Goh.

Plaza Athénée Bangkok, A Royal Méridien Hotel strongly believes that its enhanced environmental, social and economic stewardship will serve the interests of both current and future generations and constitute the foundation for enduring success.

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