Sustainability is the key word

In the 18th show of the second edition of BW HOTELIER’s The GM Show, industry experts discussed on the topic, Green Horizons of Hospitality: India's Sustainable Revival Story

It is time we all embark on a journey of sustainable transformation in the Indian hospitality landscape by exploring pioneering practices that have been inspired by India’s conservation heritage and exemplified by industry leaders like ITC Hotels as we collectively pave the way for a greener hospitality future. During the 18th episode of BW HOTELIER’s The GM Show Season 2 titled Green Horizons of Hospitality: India's Sustainable Revival Story, a group of distinguished panellists from the hospitality industry voiced their opinions on the subject. These included Jalaj Rohatgi, GM, InterContinental Marine Drive Mumbai; Ajit Singh Garcha, Area GM, The Park Hyderabad; Ajoy Balkrishna, GM, Fairfield By Marriott and Sheetal Singh, GM, Ginger Mumbai Airport. 

The show began with the host Bhuvanesh Khanna putting up the first question to Jalaj Rohatgi on reflecting on India’s historical conservation practices and how they inspire modern-day sustainable initiatives in the hospitality sector. To this, Rohatgi said, “Sustainability for us Indians has always been a part of our traditions and culture and is not new for us. We hope to bring back the legacies that have been there for a long, long time and use that as a source of inspiration. Using natural resources and local producers has always been part of our culture. The idea of sustainability is to use all the available resources and not have any kind of wastage.”

The next question was directed to Ajit Singh Garcha on how can adopting green practices enhance brand reputation, attract conscious travellers and drive business growth. Garcha replied, “Tourists including Gen Z understand the need of sustainability and are ready to pay more for it. If we are not going to move towards sustainable luxury and we are not going towards moving our carbon footprint, we will not be the first choice of the upcoming traveller. Sustainability is no more a fancy word, and no more a part of a presentation. It needs to be practiced and people need to see it happen at ground level.” He felt the government can play a very important role by passing the laws and ensuring the regulations are in line with sustainability.

The moderator then turned to Ajoy Balkrishna and asked him to highlight the sustainable architectural and design practices that integrate green features and reduce the environmental footprint of hotels. Citing the example of his hotel, Balkrishna shared, “We are a completely smoke-free hotel and do not encourage and permit smoking anywhere in the hotel. The younger generation is much more conscious about sustainability which is a fairly good sign for future. Reusing water while implementing rainwater harvesting are small things that can make a huge difference. We are going back to the olden days, stepping back a little bit and thinking about the future can help a bit.”

Next up was the question for Sheetal Singh and the host asked her how exploring the application of ‘reduce, reuse and recycle’ principles to minimise waste and resource consumption in the hospitality value chain. “The earth is all we have in common and we must save it. We just don’t create memories for our guests, we also take a strong stand when it comes to our commitment to the environment. The concept of circular economy should be followed, which includes designing waste out of the system, keeping resources in use for as long as possible and extracting their maximum value. I feel we are fortunate to make a difference by being representatives in our hotels on sustainable practices and also being able to educate society about sustainable initiatives and reduce carbon footprints.”

After another round of interesting questions to each of the panellists, the show culminated with the host-moderator Bhuvanesh Khanna thanking the esteemed panellists for sharing their thoughts and views on the subject and informing about the next GM Show at 4 pm on September 14.


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