RCI Announces Sheraton Vistana Resort of Orlando as its Platinum Green Award Winner
Leading global exchange company recognizes affiliates for their sustainability efforts
LAS VEGAS (April 4, 2012) – RCI, the global leader in vacation exchange, announced the winners of the RCI Green Awards at a ceremony during the ARDA World 2012 Annual Convention and Exposition this week. The RCI® affiliated resorts honored with these awards are: Sheraton Vistana Resort, Grand Pacific Palisades Resort and Bluegreen Odyssey Dells.
“RCI is passionate about protecting the environment and recognizes the opportunity that hospitality companies have to make a positive impact through sustainability efforts,” said Geoff Ballotti, CEO, RCI. “This very special award recognizes our affiliated resorts that actively engage in sustainable practices and demonstrate a commitment to incorporating green measures into daily resort operations.”
The Platinum RCI Green Award for 2012 goes to Sheraton Vistana Resort in Orlando, Fla. This RCI Gold Crown resort was entirely renovated in 2011. All villas are equipped with double-pane, low-emissivity (low-E) windows and sliding glass doors, low-flow toilets and energy-efficient appliances. The team also eliminated the use of Styrofoam on resort grounds, uses only environmentally-friendly cleaning products and uses filtered water stations instead of bottled water.
"At Sheraton Vistana Resort, doing the right thing for the environment and for our communities is more important than ever,” said Glen Vlasic, general manager, Sheraton Vistana Resort. “Our owners and guests understand the importance of sustainability, and our associates are passionate about doing their part. We strongly believe that our efforts to support a healthy environment serve the interests of both current and future generations, as well as constitute the foundation for enduring success."
Grand Pacific Palisades Resort of Carlsbad, Calif. is taking home the Gold RCI Green Award. This resort has taken recycling to a whole new level by adding a new recycling center, which resulted in the resort recycling 41,600 pounds of paper, glass and yard waste last quarter. Water and energy conservation was also top-of-mind with new water-saving showerheads in rooms, low-flow sprinkler heads throughout the resort and programmable thermostats that reduce the energy used for air conditioning and heating.
The Silver RCI Green Award winner is Bluegreen Odyssey Dells. This Wisconsin-based resort uses only supplies that are made from recycled materials, including garbage bags that are biodegradable. The guest rooms are equipped with a master switch to cut the power in the unit when the guests are not using it, and all lights use CFL bulbs. To limit carbon emissions, the resort only hires associates who live within 30 miles of the property.
“All of the Green Award finalists were outstanding, with our three winners truly going above and beyond in their efforts to preserve the environment,” said Ballotti. “They deserve to be applauded for their hard work and enthusiasm, and serve as inspiring examples for all of us in the hospitality industry.”
The RCI Green Award winners were determined through a three-part process. First, each resort submitted a self-assessment form that included in-depth questions on the resort’s sustainability efforts. These submissions were then reviewed and scored by Rohit Verma, professor of Service Operations Management at Cornell University’s School of Hotel Administration, to determine the award finalists. Lastly, the selected finalists underwent an on-site property inspection conducted by Verma. Additional finalists were: Carlsbad Seapointe, Hilton Grand Vacation Club at MarBrisa and Wyndham Santa Barbara Resort and Yacht Club.
RCI’s offices in Europe also recently announced their Green Award winners, which were chosen through resort self-assessments reviewed and scored by Peter Burns, professor of International Tourism and Development and director of the Center for Tourism Policy Studies at the University of Brighton, U.K.
The winners of Europe’s Green Awards are: The Langdale Estate, which has established a dynamic green agenda; Trenython Manor, A Club La Costa World Resort, which sponsors and assists local efforts for sustainability; and Sahara Sunset Club, which makes an effort to work with suppliers and operational partners who have sustainable business practices in place.
The Green Award programs in North America and Europe are modeled off of a successful RCI Going Green Award launched in the Pacific region last year. To learn more about the RCI Green Award, visit www.rciaffiliates.com.
RCI is the worldwide leader in vacation exchange with over 4,000 affiliated resorts in approximately 100 countries. RCI pioneered the concept of vacation exchange in 1974, offering members increased flexibility and versatility with their vacation ownership experience. Today, through RCI® Weeks, the traditional week-for-week exchange system, and RCI Points®, the industry’s first global points-based exchange system, RCI provides flexible vacation options to its 3.7 million RCI subscribing members each year. RCI is part of Wyndham Exchange & Rentals and the Wyndham Worldwide family of brands (NYSE: WYN). For additional information visit our media center, rciaffiliates.com or The RCI Blog. RCI also can be found on Facebook, YouTube and Twitter.
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