Cinnamon Bey Beruwala became the first hotel in Sri Lanka to be awarded the LEEDV-2009 Gold certification after observing and meeting the expectations of all green standards required of a business entity. Its sustainable efforts from its inception as a project were recognised and rewarded by LEED as one of the best projects in Sri Lanka.
Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) is a set of rating systems for the design, construction, operation and maintenance of green buildings, homes and neighbourhoods. Developed by the US Green Building Council (USGBC), LEED is intended to help building owners and operators be environmentally responsible and use resources efficiently. LEED is the most popular and most recognised green rating system in the world and obtaining a certification is deemed very prestigious for any organisation.
“There aren’t many businesses which approach sustainability through the discipline of engineering but I am proud to say that Cinnamon Hotels & Resorts is a hotel chain that drives sustainability through modern engineering techniques. Obtaining LEED Gold certification shows how far we have come in this journey and I am pleased to announce that this only one milestone in a series of such achievements we have envisioned as a group,” said Cinnamon Hotels & Resorts Head of Projects & Engineering and John Keells Group Vice President Michael Jayasekera.
The LEED Version of 2009, which is the current rating system, audits and examines five key areas as follows: sustainable sites which look at ecological impact, water efficiency – which covers reduction of total water usage and water efficient landscaping, energy and atmosphere – for energy efficiency of the building and integration of all systems and equipment properly into the building envelope. The fourth area is material and resources which cover what green materials have been used in a particular project and finally indoor environmental quality which looks at measures taken to prevent air pollution and strategies established to gain more daylight into the complex and less thermal energy. A minimum of 60 points were required to receive the LEED Gold certification, which Cinnamon Bey Beruwala comfortably achieved.
“With this achievement, John Keells Group has let all sectors of our society know that we can meaningfully address the threats to our planet, that all businesses, even those that operate large and complex hospitality arenas, can reduce energy use, protect our climate, and protect biodiversity,” commented Environ Sustainability Globe Ltd. Co-Directors Keerthi Ratnayake and Dr. Rahula Attalage.
Key green features
Some of the key green features in the hotel building included: an energy efficient envelope and mechanical, plumbing and electrical systems, resulting in utility cost savings of 32.2% and innovative water management strategies that allow the building to use 65.62% less potable water than a conventional building. During construction, 70% of the construction waste was diverted from landfills and sent to recycling plants for reuse. Innovative water-efficient landscaping system that was in place also reduced the potable water usage in the irrigation system by 100% and a commendable strategic Erosion and Sedimentation Control System kept the contamination and pollution to the eco system at a minimum.
These were only some of the focus areas in their environmental sustainability journey and Cinnamon Hotels & Resorts strives to continuously improve their green initiatives across all properties, to portray themselves as a good corporate citizen. “We are very proud that Cinnamon Bey Beruwala was the only hotel in Sri Lanka to be awarded the LEED Gold certification. The Environment plays a key role in sustaining the modern day hospitality business and Cinnamon Hotels & Resorts believes it is our responsibility to communicate this message via solid action on ground. Being one of the pioneers in environment friendly hospitality business, Cinnamon Hotels & Resorts has taken many initiatives towards our five pledges in the leisure sector, including ‘I will be green’ where employees are encouraged to carry out responsible tourism” said Sri Lanka and Maldives Resorts Sector Head and John Keells Group Executive Vice President Sunimal Senanayake.