Brands around the globe are hopping on the sustainability bandwagon, and for good reason. According to Expedia, 90% of travelers are seeking more eco-friendly travel options. Consumers consider environmental impact and supporting local economies, communities, and cultures as contributing factors to their choices, and 3rd party certification is the best way to signal to your guests that your property has taken all aspects of sustainability into consideration when it comes to its operations. 

Following a certification process can help your hotel identify and implement ways to improve your impact across a wide range of sustainability criteria. They can help improve efficiencies (read: reduce costs), demonstrate compliance with local regulations, and satisfy customers who are increasingly aware of social and environmental initiatives. 


There are two types of certifications for hotels: The first is for the building itself, like LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) and BREEAM (Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method).

Fun fact: ITC Windsor is the first hotel in the world to achieve “LEED Zero Carbon Certification”

The second is for how your hotel operates. Things like energy and water efficiency, waste management, and biodiversity conservation are all criteria that count towards certifications. 

Some of the most popular and reputable operational certifications are Green Key, which represents a commitment by properties to adhere to a rigorous documentation and frequent audits to ensure compliance with their strict guidelines, and GSTC (Global Sustainable Tourism Council), which includes members such as Hilton, Airbnb, and Four Seasons. 

“Certifications like LEED are one of the best ways that hotels can show their guests that they’ve gone above and beyond not only for them, but for our planet” - John Peterson, Energy Consultant at SIG (Sustainable Investment Group)


Hotel Vin minibar set - In-Room PlusAmenities matter! Sourcing eco-friendly, plastic free amenity and minibar products can help you achieve your sustainability goals. Pictured: Plastic-free minibar set for Hotel Vin



Accor Group is an ecosystem of brands that are committed to their comprehensive sustainability strategy, including supporting their 5,400 hotels in obtaining an external sustainability certificate. According to Accor, they are “committed to achieving Net Zero carbon emissions by 2050 in line with the Paris Agreement and also engaging in absolute reduction of our greenhouse gas emissions.” 

Moving the hospitality industry towards a more sustainable future through 3rd party certifications will have nothing but a positive impact on our climate, local ecosystems and economies. Showing your guests your commitment to efficient building and operations also means earning a reputation among travelers as a business that cares. 

For more information on 3rd party certification for your property, check out this factsheet from the Sustainable Hospitality Alliance.