The Palazzo is, by all standards, a luxury hotel with elegant and well-appointed bi-level luxury suites. But the hotel has also received LEED-Silver New Construction award from the US Green Building Council
I was recently invited by the hotel to experience their LEED silver eco-friendly luxury.
TVs are everywhere – in the comfy living area, and the plush bed area, and even in the bathroom. Soak in the tub and watch TV. Or shower in the separate glass area. The colors are soothing and low key beige and taupe. As an added touch, I could lay in bed and operate the curtains and drapes to reveal the sun drenched LV vista. A true delight to be able to bring sunlight into the room without getting out of bed.
And yet, there is one important difference between my stay in The Palazzo, and some of the other luxury hotels in Las Vegas. The Palazzo is a LEED Silver hotel, meeting rigorous standards for reducing the impact on the environment and promoting sustainable vacationing.
In particular, the scarcity and corresponding wise use of water is crucial. Although guests will likely not be aware, there are water-efficient showerheads, high efficiency toilets and low-flow bathroom faucets. The hotel also uses a refrigerator air system that uses less water for cooling. More efficient lighting reduces the interior heat buildup in rooms and lowers the need for the air conditioning.
Electric consumption is also reduced by room motion sensors, pioneered at The Palazzo. Guests come in and set thermostat, but when they leave the room the system automatically goes into hibernation. When guests come back, the air conditioning wakes up and immediately resets itself to the guest’s desired temperature level
I also appreciated that lights are turned on and off via one switch by the door. Turn the lights off with one flip on the way out, and turn them back on the same way when returning instantly lighting up the room.
Solar energy is also a key part of their ecological efforts – both thermal and electric. The swimming pools use solar heated water. In the summer, the pools require less heating, and the excess solar energy is diverted to the hotel’s hot water system for use in kitchens and hotel suites.
There’s also a robust recycling program, that sorts the trash into dry and wet waste from the restaurants, casino, and suites. “We’re the largest recycler in the Valley with 45 tons of recyclables a day, out of 70 to 80 tons of waste during peak,” says Nicholas Rumanes, Vice President of the Las Vegas Sands Corp., the parent company of The Palazzo, with justifiable pride.
If You Go: It’s easy to get to Las Vegas from Albuquerque. Southwest has direct flights from the Sunport and often has internet specials. If you drive, it’s about 10 to 12 hours (you will need to take rest breaks) but the drive includes some spectacular scenery around Hoover Dam. (It also includes some really boring segments as well.)
There are many luxury hotels around the world. Some are so spectacular that one might be tempted to ignore the eco aspects. But some are plush, lush, and green and it makes being a supporter of sustainable travel a pleasure – The Palazzo is one of them.
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