Trash Pickin’ and Picnickin’ is Back!

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Trash Pickin’ and Picnickin’ is Back!

What’s fun, free – and green all over? The Antlers at Vail’s ‘Trash Pickin’ & Picnickin’ Package’!

Thank you to our guests for a fantastic winter 2013/2014! The sun is out and we are preparing for summer. As a special thank you, we’d like to invite you to be a part of our green team this weekend with Trash Pickin’ & Picnickin’. You can help us pick up trash on the highway for a few hours Saturday morning (April 26), join us for a free picnic afterward (that’s optional) and we’ll give you a free night* on Friday or Saturday night.  That’s it … no other catch.  If you want to stay an additional night, we have special rates available.  But if you just stay one night … it’s a freebie! It’s our way of thanking you for staying with us, and for helping us keep our world a little cleaner place.

Guests will enjoy participating in one of its most long-standing sustainable efforts  – its highway cleanup program. General manager Rob LeVine says, “We’ve been cleaning up our two-mile stretch of Vail Pass since 1988; this year, we thought our guests might like to join us and see what a thoroughly good time we always have.” The Antlers – which has incorporated numerous eco-friendly business practices long before the term ‘green’ was coined – recently was awarded the TripAdvisor GreenLeader and Actively Green 2015 statuses, in addition to the Vail Valley Success Awards 2009 Green Business of the Year.

Call us at 800-843-8245!

*Limited availability.

 

Antlers Achieves TripAdvisor GreenLeaders Status

The Antlers team has always been environmentally conscious and we are quite proud of our longstanding leadership as a green hotel. We feel privileged to call this special valley our home, and our entire team appreciates the important role we play in reducing waste and pollution, and in leading conservation efforts. So, we are very excited to announce that we have been accepted as a Silver level GreenLeader into the new TripAdvisor® GreenLeaders™ program – one of only two Vail lodgings to achieve the TripAdvisor GreenLeaders status. The program helps travelers plan greener trips by identifying environmentally-friendly accommodations across the U.S. In addition to its TripAdvisor honor, the Antlers also was one of the first Vail hotels to earn Actively Green 2015 status as designated by Sustainable Travel International.TripAdvisor Greenleaders

While the recent green news isn’t a first for the Antlers, which was named Vail Valley Partnership Green Business of the Year several years ago, the new honors are meaningful for the hotel “because they acknowledge our continuing attention to environmentally-friendly efforts,” says General Manager Rob LeVine. “Our whole team enjoys brainstorming additional ways to save energy and reduce our impact on the planet, and we continue to implement ideas as they’re suggested. We also have been active in supporting the Vail community’s emphasis on going green – including acting as a sponsor of the Town of Vail’s portable solar VoltsWagon.”

From being a Vail Valley leader in converting wood-burning fireplaces to gas more than 20 years ago to installing an environmentally friendly laundry that’s one of the greenest in the area to smaller efforts like using refillable amenities containers in all of its suites, the Antlers has made green practices a regular part of doing business for decades. Additional eco-friendly initiatives include a highway cleanup day that guests can help with for a free overnight stay, free bus passes for employees, hotel-wide recycling, purchasing supplies with recyclable content, new smart landscape sprinkler timers with moisture sensors, investment in solar panels and wind power, participation in the Town of Vail’s Sole Power program and much more. For information about the Antlers at Vail’s many green practices, visit the Green Efforts page on the Antlers website.

TripAdvisor GreenLeaders

The TripAdvisor GreenLeaders program was developed in partnership with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s ENERGY STAR® program, the U.S. Green Building Council, and the United Nations Environment Programme. “TripAdvisor GreenLeaders are leading the hospitality industry in making efforts to improve their environmental footprint,” says Jenny Rushmore, director of responsible travel at TripAdvisor. Travelers can search for accommodations with GreenLeaders status on the TripAdvisor site and view a detailed list of environmentally-friendly practices. For more information on the program, visit www.tripadvisor.com/GreenLeaders.

Actively Green 2015

TripAdvisor GreenLeaders, Actively green, Vail hotelActively Green 2015 is a community-driven collaboration with a goal of certifying at least 100 businesses across the Vail Valley for sustainability best practices by the February 2014 FIS World Alpine Ski Championships. The program offers education, support and resources to Vail Valley business toward achieving certification as designated by globally recognized nonprofit Sustainable Travel International (STI).

 

Actively Green for 2015

AG_Certified

The Antlers at Vail once again is taking the lead.

The Antlers, along with The Wren (East-West Resorts) and the Sonnenalp, are the first resorts in Eagle County to be certified by the Town of Vail and Sustainable Travel International (STI) as “Actively Green for 2015“.

Actively Green is the brain trust of Kristen Bertuglia, the Sustainable Director for the Town of Vail, and Kim Langmaid who chairs the  Eagle Valley Alliance for Sustainability.  The goal is to certify 100 businesses in the Valley before the 2015 FIS Alpine World Ski Championships which are scheduled to be held in Vail and Beaver Creek. The process is rigorous and the intent is to show the world that our Valley is in harmony, not only with the environment, but with each other with regard to business operations.

The process began back on September 4th when the Antlers hosted the first STI Educational  Seminar with 20 other business’s.  The training for certification is an intense exercise that covers 21 steps that need to be addressed and adopted as policy.

The criteria range from educating employees and guests about green practices, tracking waste, energy and water use, monitoring green house gases, responsible purchasing and simply pledging to be a good neighbor in our community.

The certification is a “living document”.

Data is gathered and documented into categories on a monthly basis.  This information is then used to determine the environmental impact we are having as we operate our business.  Hopefully, we will see savings in water and energy use and demonstrate to employees and clients the importance of our efforts.

We are proud to be on the forefront of this effort and are excited for the all the businesses that will be joining us soon.

2015 and the World Ski Championships just aren’t that far off.

Greg

 

PS – Without our own Sustainability Coordinator (Greg Ziccardi) the Antlers wouldn’t be in the leadership position we are, both in terms of this Actively Green certification, as well as all of our ongoing efforts.  -Rob

 

Solar Panels in Vail, Only Better

Antlers solar panels 1

When I told Randi that we had just bought 14 solar panels, her response was, “Really?  Where are we going to put them?”  A logical question, I suppose.  Happily, we don’t have to put them anywhere… we don’t even have to touch them. That’s all taken care of.  All we do is write a check and then start watching for the monthly credit on our Holy Cross electric bill.  How cool is that?

Instead of being placed on our roof, Clean Energy Collective installs them along with about 1,986 of their best buddies on a two acre site down by the airport in Rifle.  The energy they produce then gets fed into the grid.  Voila!  Naturally, the site was selected for optimum exposure and efficiency.  The maintenance is taken care of in perpetuity by virtue of the purchase price plus a fraction of the energy savings from now on.  Again … how cool is that?

Antlers solar panels 2

When we replaced the Antlers roof a few years ago, we tried hard to make it work to install solar along with it.  Sadly, we weren’t able to get it done.  But hey … at this point … who cares?  This is better.  No muss, no fuss, and we’re saving about $700 a year on our electric bill.  That’s about a 7% return initially (better than any of my investments are doing these days), and it should only grow each year as the cost of energy goes up (uhhhh … that’s pretty likely).  Of course, even if the return wasn’t so obviously good, it would still feel great to be “doing the right thing”.

We at the Antlers are quite proud of all our green efforts and initiatives, but this almost seems too easy.  Like, why wouldn’t you do this?  If all goes according to plan, we’ll pick up some more panels next year, and the next year, and …

Another fun element of this project (for us, at least) is the fact that Mike Dow, son of Antlers owners Buzz and Connie Dow, works for Clean Energy Collective and is the one who sold us the panels.   The only thing better than doing this kind of business, is doing it with a member of the family (well, practically).  Since each Antlers condominium is individually metered for electricity, our next step is to point ALL of the condo owners in the right direction, so they too can sign up for this gig.  Which is exactly what I just did for my own home in Edwards.  Ya-hoo!

CEC

An All-Day Planning Session on Sustainability… Fun? Really?

Last week I got an invitation to volunteer an entire day to do an “alignment workshop” with the Eagle Valley Alliance for Sustainability.  On the surface, that offer was slightly less than compelling.  Given my somewhat stressed schedule (so what else is new?), I was really tempted to just say, “Sorry”.

Because it was my friend Kim Langmaid (the new President of EVAS) asking, and because the Antlers has been the Official Hotel of EVAS and largely because Bob Vanourek was facilitating (who’s at the very top of my all-time business heroes list), I said yes.  It turned out to be the best decision I’ve made in awhile.

Fifteen of the brightest people I know, led by a genius, in an incredibly valuable planning session.  What’s more, it was actually fun.  Bob’s alignment process addresses everything from Purpose, Vision, Values and Goals, to Strategy, Structure, Action Steps and Communication.  Much of that is covered in his book Triple Crown Leadership, plus a whole lot more.  

We spent the entire day on the initial “high-level” pieces.  As a sidebar, when we were talking about the Purpose of the organization (what many call a “Mission Statement”) I was particularly struck by one of Bob’s slides.  It reflected the stated purpose of the United States Humane Society … Celebrating Animals, Confronting Cruelty.  Wow … how’s that for powerful?  It made me think that every Mission Statement ought to be limited to four or five words.

At the end of the day, I admitted to feeling somewhat guilty that I had only spent half the time thinking about the future of EVAS, and the other half applying it all to the Antlers. I can’t wait to put it into practice.  Happily, EVAS has already started to.

Rob

High Altitude Inspires Elevated Thinking at Elevate Vail 2012 Summit This Fall

Antlers at Vail offers discounted hotel rates for international symposium

Antlers at Vail hotel   Antlers at Vail sponsors Elevate Vail 2012

Left, Antlers at Vail hotel; right, photo by Jack Affleck

What does it take to create and sustain special places? The global symposium Elevate Vail 2012 brings together future-minded business leaders, developers, planners, architects, builders and travel professionals from September 25 – 27, 2012 for panel discussions, interactive workshops, site tours, seminars and other presentations about the thoughtful development and caretaking of special places.

The Antlers at Vail hotel is a sponsor and official lodging hotel for the event, which will be held at the nearby Sebastian Vail. ElevateVail 2012 participants will save 35% off standard room rates; studio suites are $156 per night; a one-bedroom suite is $182 per night and a two-bedroom suite is $273 per night, subject to availability.

“We’re excited to welcome our colleagues from ‘down under’ to the Vail Valley this year,” says Antlers General Manager Rob LeVine, who attended the inaugural 2011 Creating Special Places event in Queensland, Australia. LeVine will speak about Sustainable Tourism on September 27.

Elevate Vail 2012 is produced by Regional Breakthroughs/Australia, and features a faculty of international speakers and presenters. Registration is $1450, and includes priority access to all event sessions, special tours and activities, an exclusive gift bag and more. For additional information, visit www.elevatesymposium.com.

The Antlers at Vail offers condominiums ranging from studio suites up to four bedrooms, and each room includes a fully-equipped kitchen, fireplace, free Internet access and free parking in a heated indoor garage. The Antlers Vail is conveniently located with easy access to the ElevateVail/2012 sessions, and the free Vail town shuttle stops just footsteps away. For more information, call 1-800-843-8245 or visit the Antlers at www.antlersvail.com.

Media Contacts: Rob LeVine, General Manager, Antlers at Vail, 970. 476. 2471, RLeVine@antlersvail.com; or Darla Worden, WordenGroup Strategic Public Relations,darla@wordenpr.com, 307.734.5335.

Greg Gone Green

“Going Green” in the lodging industry is not a trend anymore; it’s a way to do business.  Since the early eighties, the Antlers have been committed to green practices.  Recently we have introduced even more initiatives.  Our Sustainability Coordinator believes the new innovations available to all of us not only save energy and reduce waste, but often save the other kind of green ($) at the same time.  “There truly is a balance, sacrificing comfort or quality is not part of the equation anymore.”

A few examples that are now in place, or soon to be in place are the refillable amenities containers that are in all the guest condominiums. Standard globe lighting is being replaced with more expensive but longer lasting L.E.D lighting. Energy management systems are being installed in some of our condominiums which recognize when a room is not occupied and activates a “sleep” mode for energy consumption. We are investigating and considering the idea of “staging” the energy consumption in our building in order to not reach peak demand periods as other properties do.

Some of these ideas and many more are unique to the Vail Valley.  We have taken the lead once again and hope to continue to set an example for all others to follow.

Greg Gone Green

Since being deputized as the official environmental sustainability coordinator (or green guy doing that green thing) at the Antlers, some of my assignments involve extensive travel.  I continue to ask Rob to send me to Italy, France and China so I can study and report back of “people practices” around the globe; but he doesn’t feel compelled or questions my real intentions. I was however, given permission to travel back to Cleveland and, using my vacation days, I would like to disclose the progress I observed after only 4 months time. (Please reference “Us and Them” blog – 6/12/10)

They aren’t doing very well and I find myself  becoming more of a big pain the culo.

My cousin Tim, who I dearly love, owns and operates the Cleats Restaurants in Ohio.  He recently started to recycle cardboard after I hounded him about it last time I traveled to the Great Middle East.  Metro Waste is the local hauler and I told him “I’m not eating any more of your free food if you don’t start doing something.  These guys pick it up and all you have to do is throw it in a different container.”  Trust me when I say there is a lot of cardboard going into those bins from the everyday operation of 14 restaurants.

Now I’m on him about the glass and aluminum.  “You’ve got to be kidding?  You can put it all in one container, it’s called co-mingle, and you cut back on a tremendous amount of waste and…. the general public will finally begin to respect you.

 He said “I wish you weren’t my cousin. Would you please leave me alone?  The girls (waitresses) wouldn’t take the time to separate things and I wouldn’t ask them to do it”.

So I asked them. “I’m not going to drink any more of your free beer if you don’t consider this.”

They said “Good.  We need your table”.

I will continue to be his pain until I make him understand that he, and countless other business operations, are needlessly throwing away millions of pounds of reusable products.  When he starts to recycle, and I’m sure he will, I can’t wait to tell him about the Food Service Technology Center in San Fransisco that studies energy and water efficiency in commercial kitchens.

Greg

Rob.  If you read this you might want to send me to Paris, Rome, etc so I can explain and convince others of the practices in the Western World (or maybe I should just focus on The Antlers).

Health and Wellness Yoga Class and Lunch

For the Week of September 27 – October 3 Antlers will be feature some activites to help you and your family get back to “nature” first is a Yoga class lead by instructor Tracy Long, this class will be for beginner and and experienced a like followed by a lunch presented by Antlers in house caterer Chef Barry Robinson. Over lunch participants will learn about some healthy cooking techniques and Chef Barry will share some of his favorite healthy recipes.

When: Saturday October 2, 2010
Time: Yoga 10:00am to 11:15am Lunch starting at 11:30am.
Where: Antlers at Vail Swimming Pool Deck (weather permitting)
Cost: Lodging Package $170.00 for a studio condominium and 1 space for yoga and Lunch.
The fee for additional attendees or guests without lodging is $50 (including Yoga Class and Lunch
 
 

Vail Pass From the Side of the Road

                  

I 70 looks a lot brighter today.  That’s because the Antlers Staff cleaned it up for the 22nd year in a row.  It’s gotten to where we feel that our 2 mile stretch of highway atop Vail Pass is an extension of the Antlers property, or maybe even like a very lazy employee that can’t clean up after himself.  Either way, we know when this extra piece needs to get polished.

There were 18 of us this year and we even had a few guests help out (thank you Katie, Bob, Linda and Tim for joining us).  These are some smart people.  They saw the ad for the Highway Special and took advantage of the “Stay one Night and Get one Night Free with a catered Lunch afterwords and you get to keep any Valuables you may find if you help Us clean up on Highway Special Day”.

Together, we managed to leave 40+ orange bags of trash along our 2 mile stretch of highway.  That may seem like a lot (and it is), but those of us that have been doing this for awhile observed that it wasn’t as much as last year.  This means one of two things;  1. Either there is less traffic on I70…or… 2. People are actually conscience of the fact that throwing garbage out your windows at 65mph is really not a cool thing to do anymore.  I don’t think it’s number one, so I choose number two.  (Just an aside to throwing things away in the wrong place; Darwin, one of our houseman extraordinaires, who joined us on our “walk”, didn’t mind at all that someone; 1. consciously or 2. unconsciously, threw away a $100 bill.  I don’t think it was number one, so I’m going with number two).

Lots of sunshine, a great lunch, a bunch of laughs, and a good feeling about getting all that junk out of the gutter.  It was a great day and thanks to everyone that helped out including our buddies from CDOT that follow up and the other buddies we work with that stayed behind to run the “ranch”.

I Guess a Little Green,

I need to pick up this milk carton and I can’t get this stupid bag to open.

Greg