Combate Beach Resort nabs PRHTA’s environmental excellence award
Combate Beach Resort recently received the endorsement as a ‘Green Hotel,’ from the Puerto Rico Hotel and Tourism Association (PRHTA) and its Conservation Committee for its program and practices of corporate environmental sustainability, it announced.
Combate Beach Resort was evaluated under the requirements of the Sustainable Tourism and Environmental Performance Stewardship program, one of the most complete and demanding programs in Puerto Rico. It joins a select group of hotels that have completed this process on the island.
Since its opening in 2011, Combate Beach Resort has sought to improve its efficiency and constantly reduce the use of energy, water, maintenance materials, and the amount of waste it generates. To achieve these objectives, it has invested more than $700,000 in systems, equipment, and technologies that reduce its environmental footprint, hotel executives said.
“The conservation of resources is fundamental to stay competitive in the market,” said Xavier A. Ramírez, general manager and co-owner of the hotel. “Although we provide one of the best hospitality products in the region, market conditions limit the ability to increase rates.”
“These eco-friendly practices have allowed us to reduce operating costs, maintain attractive rates and grow consistently year after year,” he said,
“So far, we have implemented more than 30 eco-friendly practices in the design of our physical plant and operational processes, and we are evaluating others,” Ramírez said. “In fiscal year 2017-18, we grew again in occupancy, and we were able to reduce the average energy consumption per occupied room by 28 percent, versus the previous fiscal year.”
The Combate Beach Resort’s efforts and environmental results have been recognized locally and internationally. In 2015, Combate Beach Resort received the certification as a “Green Leader-Gold Level,” from TripAdvisor. In 2017, it received two recognitions during the Puerto Rico Manufacturing Association’s Environmental Summit, in the categories of “Environmental Innovation Project” and “Waste Minimization Project.”
Tomás Ramírez, president of XJTT Hospitality Inc., owner and operator of Combate Beach Resort, said one of the most innovative projects has been the construction of the EcoSuites rooms — the first hotel rooms endorsed by the Puerto Ric Tourism Company, designed from 11 discarded 40-foot freight containers.
The containers were redesigned and modernized to turn them into 320 square-foot rooms.
“Every year, we get hundreds of tourists from around the world who want to stay in these rooms,” Ramírez said.
“For our team, it is a great honor to receive this environmental recognition from the PRHTA and its Conservation Committee,” Xavier Ramírez said.
“We know of the great work they have been doing for the past 15 years to educate, promote and share knowledge and sustainable practices of excellence among the companies that make up the tourism industry in our island,” he added.
According to Tomás Ramírez, the next step in the Combate Beach Resort’s eco-friendly route is to implement a rainwater collection and reuse system.
“With this project, we strive to recover and reuse around 140,000 gallons of rainwater, annually,” Ramírez said.