Heathrow Airport Hotels has 30,000 new employees who are all busy bees – literally.
The award-winning hotel, at Heathrow Airport’s Terminal 4, is working towards improving its green status, with the introduction of a whole host of measures to cut down waste, along with reducing water and energy usage. And as part of those measures the hotel now has four beehives which are home to thousands of bees.
Currently the honey produced is gifted to guests and clients on special occasions, but with another 50,000 bees taking up residence this year, it will also then be available as part of the breakfast offering.
“Plan Bee” is one of a number of forward-thinking initiatives which have been adopted, with the aim of the hotel cutting waste and water usage, as well as reducing energy consumption.
The hotel has its own Chef’s Garden where herbs, vegetables and fruit are grown and used across its three OXBO dining experiences – OXBO bar, OXBO Café and OXBO Kitchen.
Half empty bottles of water left by guests are collected and added to a water butt next to the garden, which is then drained and used to water the various fruit and vegetable beds.
Fruit and vegetables trimmings are also collected and put in rotating compost bins, which speed up the rotting process and within a matter of months can then be used as compost on the garden beds.
Chefs also work closely with suppliers to ensure that produce is sourced locally whenever possible and is sustainable.
Poultry comes from farms in Hertfordshire, game from Royal Berkshire, pork from Essex, lamb from Midlands, while all the beef used is from the UK.
At the same time the fish served is caught in the North Sea and from the English Channel and purchased through markets at Brixham.
The hotel’s commitment to sustainable food sourcing and food upcycling ladders up to Travel with Purpose, Hilton’s ESG strategy to drive responsible travel and tourism globally.
Oliver Stockland, area general manager, Hilton, is very proud of the measures the hotel has taken and the positive response to them.
“We are constantly looking at all the areas of our operation to come up with solutions for being more sustainable, but while still maintaining the same high standards for our guests,” he said.
“As part of our aim, last year we saw a positive reduction of energy consumption of 24 per cent thanks to a number of measures we put in place such as the installation of 100 per cent LED lighting systems and a room energy management system.
“In addition to that, growing our own herbs and vegetables in the chef’s garden means the produce is as fresh as it can be when it’s used in our restaurants and that’s something that our guests greatly appreciate.”
The award-winning property was named the World’s Leading Airport Hotel for five consecutive years and Europe’s Leading Airport Hotel for the past eight years.