Hotel Jakarta Amsterdam: Where Circular Economy Meets Hospitality
Can a hotel be luxurious and sustainable at the same time? Is it possible that a hotel with as many as 200 rooms can generate its own electricity? Could a hotel serve as a social hotspot for locals? These are the questions I asked myself before writing this article.
At Sea Going Green, we work hard to make the tourism industry more sustainable. We don’t do this on our own, but in collaboration with visionaries and pioneers to spread the word that becoming more sustainable is profitable and doesn’t exclude luxury.
One such pioneer that I will highlight in this blog is the newly constructed Hotel Jakarta Amsterdam in The Netherlands. The hotel is situated in the Java Island area of Amsterdam, where ships once left for Jakarta, Indonesia as a part of the Dutch spice trade in the seventeenth century. This hotel offers astonishing views of the huge ocean cruise liners that arrive in Amsterdam every day. Upon entering the building, you will escape the city and feel as if you are in the middle of a botanical garden in the heart of Java. The hotel lets you travel to Indonesia and experience local cuisine without even having to take a plane.
As dedicated environmentalists, we (Maxime, Arin and Emma) prepared a long list of detailed questions to see how the Hotel Jakarta represents the “green future” aligned with how we conceptualize sustainability. After Wes (staff member of Hotel Jakarta) showed us every corner of the hotel and proudly explained the concept, we were blown away. There is a clear reason as to why the hotel has achieved so many environmental accolades, including the BREEAM “Excellent” score.
In this blog, I will touch upon the hotel operations, especially electricity consumption, waste production and other practices that incorporate sustainability to showcase the forward thinking concepts that Hotel Jakarta Amsterdam embodies.
We all know that a huge hotel needs a lot of electricity to operate. The architect of the hotel incorporated many smart technologies, including these four:
1700M2 of solar panels have been installed on the roof and on the sunny side of the building.
The massive garden in the middle of the building is not only beautiful but also plays a major role in energy consumption. The garden cools down the entire interior by 5 degrees Celsius (9 degrees Fahrenheit), so air conditioning is rarely needed.
The hotel uses the water from the surrounding IJ river to cool down the building through its floors.
There is a ground source heat pump under the hotel which uses the natural heat to warm up the hotel’s water.
All these measurements combined make it possible for the hotel to generate 100% of its voltage, making it close to self-sufficient.
Together, the hotel developed innovative concepts with its partners to reduce their consumption drastically by using the following methods:
a sophisticated water irrigation system that uses rainwater and greywater to water the garden and plants.
water-saving showerheads and taps have been installed to reduce their guests' consumption.
all plastic water bottles (besides in minibars) were banned and replaced with their own water filtration machine that purifies tap water.
Food Sourcing and Disposal
The Hotel Jakarta Amsterdam’s restaurant and bakery both have their own pastry chef who uses mainly local ingredients. The food waste is taken care of by a food waste recycling press. It presses all of the water out of the food and generates dense blocks that are picked up and used as compost.
The hotel tries to reduce its single-use plastic consumption to a minimum. They have a strict attitude against single use plastics and do not sell plastic bottles and offer eco-friendly straws. The hotel staff also refill bathroom toiletries instead of offering small travel versions.
All of the staff wear uniforms made out of recycled tissues via a collaboration between fashion labels By Rockland x Hacked By.
A Unique Touch to Your Biking Experience
Their partner Roetz produces bikes made out of second-hand materials in their Fair Factory and employs people who have difficulties in finding a job. These bikes are available for rent to hotel guests in order to encourage sustainable and healthy travel within the city.
If you ever find yourself in Amsterdam, go ahead and check it out yourself. Get an exotic drink at the Skybar Malabar on the 8th and 9th floors with an amazing view of both Amsterdam Centraal and Amsterdam Noord, while the live DJ plays his set or escape the noise of the city by entering the jungle and enjoy a hand-made raspberry tartlet at their Bakkerij Westers.
Looking for more information about their commitment to nature? Here’s a link to their sustainability manifesto.
A big thank you to Wes and his team for inviting us and letting us see what the future of sustainable hotels will look like!