Princess Heights awarded Green Key Eco-LabelPOSTED: 07/4/16 8:13 PM
St. Maarten News — Princess Heights Luxury Boutique Condo Hotel has for the second year in a row been awarded with the prestigious Green Key eco-label.
The Green Key Programme is a leading standard for excellence in the field of environmental responsibility and sustainable operation within the tourism industry. The quality of the programme is maintained through meticulous documentation and frequent audits. It is recognized by the World Tourism Organization (WTO) and United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). According to a press release from the hotel, Princess Heights has shown they are committed to meeting the criteria set by the international Green Key award for working in a safe and sustainable manner.
Arnaldo Phelipa, Assistant General Manager of the property, expressed his satisfaction about the award: “The fact that our team was able to meet all the requirements for a second Green Key certification in a row is certainly gratifying and shows that a healthy balance between environmental conscience, operational improvements and profitability can coexist over time. It is an honor for me as a manager of the property to be part of a project that has such benefits for our island, our guests and us as a property. I extend congratulations to our staff for the hard work and setting the pace for eco-friendly practices on the island,” Phelipa said.
Meanwhile, Environmental Protection in the Caribbean (EPIC) is the national operator of the Green Key Programme and, along with the local Green Key jury, handled the certification of Princess Heights. The programme is run internationally by the Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE). FEE is a global foundation based in Denmark from which they operate a total of five programmes. All of these programmes are geared towards building a sustainable future through education.
“EPIC congratulates Princess Heights for continuing to be a leader in the growing sustainable tourism market of St. Maarten and the region” noted EPIC President Natalia Collier. There are four principles which together form the basis of the Green Key programme. The first principle is education; to educate not only the staff of the hotel but also the guests and local community. Secondly, the programme is constantly on the lookout for the latest innovations in order to reduce the overall environmental footprint. The Green Key also adds value to the site and offers a promotional advantage when establishments show their engagement with the environment and sustainability issues.
Establishments can apply for the award after fulfilling the criteria and are expected to adhere to more guideline criteria as time progresses. Almost 2400 establishments have so far been awarded in over 50 countries worldwide.