Electric ideas

The Crowne Plaza in Copenhagen came up with a novel idea to generate electricity by installing "electricity producing bicycles in its gym for guests to use."  The hotel claimed to want to create "a world first by giving guests the chance to help power the hotel whilst getting fit at the same time."  The payoff for the guest is a "locally produced complimentary meal encouraging guests to not only get fit but also reduce their carbon footprint and save electricity and money." They can also use the new electric bicycles "to monitor how much electricity they’re producing via iPhones mounted on the handle bars. Avid fitness fans can also, from June, race against the hotel’s solar panel system in a bid to produce the most electricity."

In a similar vein, Crowne Plaza hotels all over (with a test run in Europe) are embarking on a " new drive to save energy by reminding businessmen and women to switch
off laptops and mobile phones in the evening." Guests choosing the "service" will receive a call to their room "reminding them to turn off their technology at 7pm." A not so ancillary benefit to guests is that by turning off gadgets they get a good nights sleep as when left on  through the night the gadgets are only "a physical disturbance but a constant reminder of work that
needs to be done." Evidently, in the incessant chase for productivity guests end up being less productive as a consequence of sleep deprivation.

Other chains are not to be outdone in the endeavor to reduce one's carbon footprint by enlisting their guests. The Hilton in Nagoya, Japan announced earlier this week that the hotel "has started offering its guests free use of bicycles to get around the
city, part of an experiment that the company hopes will be adopted by
its properties around the world." 

Some cities around the world have already successfully implemented the free bicycle idea; these include Paris, Barcelona, Geneva, Stockholm,
Montreal and finally, London which plans on rolling it out in July of this year. Two other Japanese Cities (Kyoto and Nara) have already launched a tourist tricycle which "features washi doors (a traditional form of
Japanese paper) and lithium-ion batteries. The latter enables the ‘car’
to travel at up to a heady 25 mph. The former adds to the quirky
appearance." While many resorts around the world have offered cycles for guests, incorporating both as a fitness and energy saying idea that reduces the carbon footprint in an urban setting is likely to catch on in many more places. Manhattan next?

Published by

Vijay Dandapani

Co-founder and president of a New York based hotel company for 24 years. Grew the firm to five hotels in Manhattan and also developed a greenfield project at MacArthur airport, New York. Speaker at numerous prestigious forums including Economy Hotels World Asia, Lodging Conference, NYU, Columbia University Real Estate Roundtable, Baruch College's Zicklin School and ALIS. President and ceo of New York City Hotel Association since January 2017.