Eco Rating Grano De Oro

Name of property Hotel Grano de Oro
Person completing this form Cristina Torres
Position Guest Services
Address of property Calle 30, between Ave 2 and 4, San Jose, Costa Rica
Country Costa Rica
Phone number including country code and area code (506) 2255 3322
Web site Hotel Grano de Oro
E-mail info@hotelgranodeoro.com
Type of property Hotel and Restaurat
Number of rooms or cottages 40
Maximum number of guests 89
Eco memberships
Eco ratings, certifications, awards CST (Certificate of Sustainable Tourism) awarded 4/5 leaves
Eco Rating at Eco Tropical Resorts: 3.2 out of 5.
  • Do you have a written environmental or social sustainability policy?     YES/NO

If yes, please attach.

  • Do you have a written environmental management system?                  YES/NO

If yes, please attach.

  • Describe the property – aim, size, facilities, amount of land owned and leased  (150 words max)

Hotel Grano de Oro is a boutique city hotel located in San Jose, Costa Rica.  Dedicated to providing personalized, professional service, it consists of 38 guest rooms and 2 signature suites as well as an upscale restaurant with a focus on fresh local ingredients.  The hotel was once a Tropical Victorian mansion owned by a well known Costa Rican family and the owners have worked hard to maintain the feeling and comfort of a home in the style and decor of the rooms and restaurant.

  • Describe the location, including distance to nearest town and size of town (100 words max

Hotel Grano de Oro is located in the capital city of San Jose.  Often described as “an oasis in the heart of a bustling city”, the Grano de Oro is located on a quiet street just a short walk from downtown and  just 20 minutes from the international airport and 10 minutes from the domestic airport.

  • Describe WHY you made the decision to develop an eco resort (100 word max) 

We made the decision to become a more sustainable hotel because we felt it was something important to work on and to educate our staff about.  We felt that if we led by example the many Costa Rican’s as well as our employees would see the benefits of our actions and take what they have seen and put it into practice in their own homes and communities

Introduction to the Butterfly Club’s Eco Rating

The Butterfly Club Eco Rating has five equally-weighted categories:

  • Energy;
  • Water;
  • Recycling and waste;
  • Land and nature conservation; and
  • Community.

Each category has five levels, designated by one to five butterflies.  Through self assessment, resort operators completing this rating will determine their own levels within each category based on their responses to items listed below.

Two categories – energy and water – have similar rating systems with Levels 1 and 2 addressing conservation of existing resources, and Levels 3, 4 and 5 addressing creation of renewable energy or capturing water.

Level five in every category also requires written sustainability policies or environmental management systems to: (1) monitor and record consumption; (2) test and apply additional conservation methods; and (3) work towards specific targets.   We require a copy of your policies if you achieve level 5 in any category.

Eco Rating Grano De Oro Energy

Levels 1 and 2 – conservation: Check all that apply:

_x__  use natural air circulation and fans, not air conditioners
_x__  use natural light during the day
___  minimize use of fossil-fuel powered vehicles, machines and equipment
___  use “on demand” or solar heating for hot water
___  air dry clothes/linens
___  wash dishes by hand
_x__  use energy efficient appliances and electronics
_x__  use low wattage fluorescent or LED light bulbs
_x__  change linens, tablecloths, napkins upon request
_x__  switch off lights when not used
Other energy conservation activities? Please list:

  • We have installed light sensors in many public and staff areas.
  • We have the lights in our restaurant on a timer system to turn on and off in accordance with the position of the sun and light available during the day.

Level 1 = four or fewer energy conservation activities

Level 2 = five or more energy conservation activities

Levels 3, 4 and 5 – renewable energy: Indicate proportion (%) of energy from each source:

___  solar
___  wind
___  hydro
___  generator
_100%__  public utility
Other energy sources? Please list:

100% TOTAL
How were these proportions developed?

Level 3 = renewable energy is employed and is less than 1/3 of all energy

Level 4 = renewable energy constitutes 1/3 – 2/3 of all energy

Level 5 = renewable energy constitutes 2/3 or more of all energy.  In addition, there are written sustainability policies or environmental management systems to: (1) monitor and record energy consumption; (2) test and apply additional energy conservation methods; and (3) work towards specific energy targets.

Attach a copy of your policies if you achieve Energy Level 5 (required).

Your Energy Level (select 1 – 5) =   2

Eco Rating Grano De Oro Water

Levels 1 and 2 – conservation: Check all that apply:

_x_  low flow faucets and showerheads
_x_  low water use toilets
_x_  change linens, towels, tablecloths, and napkins upon request
___use table mats that can be wiped and not laundered
_x_  use biodegradable laundry detergent, dish soap and hand soap
_x_  treat swimming pool with chlorine-free processes (JACUZZI)
Other water conservation activities?  Please list.

Level 1 = three or fewer water conservation activities

Level 2 = four or more water conservation activities

Levels 3, 4 and 5 – capture and treat fresh water and manage waste water. Capture water: Indicate proportion (%) of water from each source:

___  spring
___  river
___  rain
___  reuse gray
_100%__  public utility
Other water sources? Please list.

100% TOTAL

Fresh water treatment: how is captured fresh water treated?
___  naturally.  Indicate method: charcoal, ultraviolet light, other? List:
___  chemically.  List chemicals used:

Waste water management:
___  septic tanks
___  cesspools
__x_  other? List methods: Goes to the city’s sewer system

Level 3: Water is captured (from springs, rivers, rain or prior use) and constitutes less than 1/3 of water from all sources.  Water is treated chemically.  Water disposal does not minimize damage to coral reefs and rain forests

Level 4:  Captured water constitutes 1/3 to 2/3 of all water.  Water is treated naturally. Water disposal minimizes damage to coral reefs and rain forests

Level 5:  Captured water constitutes more than 2/3 of all water.  Water is treated naturally. Water disposal minimizes damage to coral reefs and rain forests.   In addition, there are written sustainability policies or environmental management systems to: (1) monitor and record water consumption; (2) test and apply additional water conservation methods; and (3) work towards specific water targets.

Attach a copy of your policies if you achieve Water Level 5 (required).

Your Water Level (select 1 – 5): 2

Eco Rating Grano De Oro Recycling and waste

Check all that apply:

_x__   use durable service items, e.g. cups, glasses, dishes, tableware, storage items
_x__   buy fresh and local to reduce packaging and emissions from transportation
_x__   purchase in bulk to reduce packaging
_x__   recycle paper, glass, plastic, aluminum
___   minimize emissions from fossil-fuel powered vehicles, machines & equipment
___   zero waste in the kitchen
_x__   serve local water, not bottled water
_x__   cleaning products are biodegradable
_x__   compost organic matter
Other methods to recycle waste? Please list.
Non-compostable organic matter is sent to a pig farm to be used as feed.

Level 1 = four or fewer recycling activities

Level 2 = five recycling activities

Level 3 = six recycling activities

Level 4 = seven recycling activities

Level 5 = eight or more recycling activities.  In addition, there are written sustainability policies or environmental management systems to: (1) monitor and record recycling and waste; (2) test and apply additional recycling and waste conservation methods; and (3) work towards specific recycling and waste targets.

Attach a copy of your policies if you achieve Recycling and Waste Level 5 (required).

Your Recycling and Waste Level (select 1 – 5):   4

  

Eco Rating Grano De Oro Land and nature conservation

Check all that apply:

_x__   minimize tree removal when building
_x__   use only botanical (plant-based) herbicides & pesticides in garden & grounds
___   maintain organic gardens as food source for resort
_x__   use biodegradable cleaning products
_x__   minimize external illumination
___   take additional specific actions to preserve the local habitat.
_x__   Landscaping with native plants
Please list actions
and projects:

Level 1: one or two land and nature conservation activities

Level 2: three land and nature conservation activities

Level 3: four land and nature conservation activities

Level 4: five land and nature conservation activities

Level 5: six or more land and nature conservation activities.  In addition, there are written sustainability policies or environmental management systems to: (1) monitor and record land and nature conservation activities; (2) test and apply additional land and nature conservation methods; and (3) work towards specific land and nature conservation targets.

Attach a copy of your policies if you achieve Land and Nature Conservation Level 5 (required).

Your Land and Nature Conservation Level (select 1 – 5):   4

Eco Rating Grano De Oro Community

This category addresses policies and activities regarding staff, guests, suppliers and other members of the community.

Check all activities that apply:

_x__  hire staff residing near the resort          _75__% local nationals
_x__  use local suppliers                             _70__% purchased goods produced locally
_x__  re-invest resort income locally            100_% income re-invested locally
_x__  pay above local prevailing wage
_x__  pay into local social security
_x__  provide health insurance or coverage
_x__  use regular staff meetings to educate staff about sustainable processes throughout the resort, in the garden, with waste disposal, etc
_x__  provide educational awareness programs for staff, guests, suppliers and other members of the local community
___  provide sustainable transport to work for staff
_x__  take additional specific actions to support the local community. Please list actions and projects.
We founded and support a social project called Casa Luz for poverty stricken, abused and homeless adolescent mothers and their children, many of which come from San Jose.  Casa Luz provides shelter and the necessities to these young families as well as helps to integrate them back in to society by teaching them life skills and encouraging them to study.
___  Have enrolled your staff in any personal green training/certification schemes such as ecohelpline.com green leaf certification.

Level 1: one or two community activities

Level 2: three to five community activities

Level 3: six to seven community activities

Level 4: eight to nine community activities

Level 5: ten or more community activities.  In addition, there are written sustainability policies or environmental management systems to: (1) monitor and record community activities; (2) test and apply additional methods to support the community; and (3) work towards specific community targets.

Attach a copy of your policies if you achieve Community Level 5 (required).

Your Community Level (select 1 – 5):   4

YOUR OVERALL ECO SCORE (add your level for each category and divide by 5and enter the result with the decimal point, e.g. 3.6):    3.2

We have three final questions which are not part of the eco rating: 

  1. Please describe your single most important eco achievement:

Our single most important achievement is the social project Casa Luz that we founded and support.
Casa Luz is a home for abused, unwanted, adolescent mothers and their children.  Many of these mothers have never had a home or what we know as a family.  They come from extreme poverty and have nowhere else to go.  We provide for all of their needs as well and give them spiritual guidance and educate them with life skills.  The young mothers are encouraged to go to school and it is obligatory for their children.  Once they have completed the program and are ready to reintegrate into society we have a second stage where the girls that have earned the respect and taken responsibility for their lives go.  In this stage they are guided in finding a job and have the chance to live rent free with day care for their children while they get back on their feet.  For more information visit www.casaluz.org