Vineyard adds more green credentials

Time of article published Feb 11, 2011

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The Vineyard Hotel & Spa Conference Centre has incorporated sustainable development principles into all levels of event management.

“The Conference Centre has been operating on green electricity since September 2009 - it is a key component of our overarching environmental programme,” explained Chris van Zyl, the group environmental manager and horticulturist at the Vineyard Hotel & Spa.

“Green electricity” is generated from renewable sources such as wind, solar and wave power. These are environmentally friendly alternatives to conventional electricity that is generated from fossil fuels such as coal, oil and natural gas. Fossil fuels are an enormous source of greenhouse gas emissions (such as carbon dioxide), contributing to the present global warming crisis, and are finite in supply.

“Our Conference Centre runs on green electricity generated by the Darling Wind Farm about 70km north of Cape Town. It is South Africa's first commercial wind farm and the City of Cape Town has created a financial mechanism called Green Electricity Certificates which enables us to buy green electricity from the Darling Wind Farm,” van Zyl continued.

A number of other initiatives have also been implemented in the Conference Centre, for example: All paper used is 100 percent recycled. Filtered water and ice is provided in carafes. All menus include local, organic seasonal fruit and vegetables as well as free-range chicken and meat when available. There is a waste separation system in place in the back-of-house and more than 75 percent of waste is sent for recycling. Energy efficient lighting has also been installed in the foyer areas of the conference centre, reducing the consumption in these areas by up to 70 percent.

“The events and conferences we host are truly 'green'. It is an initiative that has our full commitment and I'm very proud of what we have achieved in this regard,” added Robyn van Oudtshoorn, the hotel's conferencing and events manager.

Substantial in size and equipped with the latest in cutting-edge audio-visual equipment, the Conference Centre spans two sun-filled floors, each having the capacity to cater for up to 280 guests. For flexible conferencing solutions, both the upper and lower level may be divided into three fully-equipped smaller conference rooms through the use of sliding soundproof panels. Rooms may function simultaneously or independently.

With parking for up to 200 cars and special access for vehicles and other large pieces of equipment, The Vineyard Conference Centre is the perfect setting for launches, exhibitions, conferences, weddings and a host of other occasions.

The Vineyard Hotel & Spa is respected for its environmental and social awareness ethos. The hotel won the Imvelo Award for 'Investor in People' and was a finalist in the category 'Best Single Resource Management' in 2010.

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