Rome’s Bettoja Hotels Collection is demonstrating that you may not be able to single-handedly solve the world’s problems, but cleaning up your own house — or hotel — is a significant step that anybody can take. Starting this Earth Day, the hotel group will remove all plastic bottles from its restaurants and minibars.
“The elimination of plastic bottles in our nearly 500 rooms has been a great desire of ours,” said Maurizio Bettoja, president of Bettoja Hotels Collection. “We are taking action on Earth Day this year, and we hope to achieve a new sustainability goal every year.”
The group’s three hotels — Hotel Mediterraneo, Hotel Massimo D’Azeglio and Hotel Atlantico — have a total of 495 rooms. If each room were occupied and each guest consumed a single minibar offering, there would be nearly 500 fewer landfill-bound plastic bottles per day, or 180,000 per year. When you consider how one good decision can influence others, the Earth Day-inspired actions of a three-hotel chain could have a much larger ripple effect through Rome, Italy and the world.
The Bettoja Hotel Collections, founded in 1875, has been passed down through five generations of family ownership. Its three hotels are within walking distance of each other. The Hotel Mediterraneo, Bettoja’s flagship property, blends Art Deco style with maps and marble busts of Roman emperors. Hotel Massimo D’Azeglio boasts a collection of original paintings from the 1860s. Hotel Atlantico is known for its ancient wine cellar. In such high-end, artistic and history-focused hotels, plastic is an unnecessary modern intrusion. Guests will probably not bemoan its absence.
Italy is already ahead of much of the world when it comes to recycling. It’s goal of “rifiuti zero,” or no waste, has led to complex schedules of waste bins and pickup days. Residents sort trash into four different types — paper, compost, mixed materials and non-recyclable garbage. Many Italian buildings have sets of color-coded bins to make this easy. As more individuals and businesses ditch plastic altogether, perhaps the amount of waste, recyclable or not, will continue to shrink.
Images via Bettoja Hotels Collection