are dedicated to long- term success; this is achieved through sustainability in the economic, the ecological and the social sectors.
There is a balance which is realized through the simultaneous and equitable implementation of these sectors. The efficiency of the establishment and the employees should, therefore, be assured and improved.
Biological Building Standards
The biological building standards were enforced even during the building process: for a lasting effect which conserves resources and allows sustainable commerce.
- The renunciation of PVC- floors and rugs; rather, the exclusive use of highquality German oak parquet and virgin stone floors.
- The use of environmentally- friendly building materials. The walls were painted with a mineral based ‘Biosil’- paint which contains no solvents, no emollients and no preservatives. This paint has an outstanding ecological profile and is, therefore, adequate for individuals with allergies.
- The use of natural plaster instead of wall- paper. The combination with the Biosilpaint makes for a positive climate in the rooms.
- It was made possible, through a great effort in the architectural planningprocess, to have a large use- able area available with just a minimal use of actual land area (central development). The final amount of square meters of use- able area available was realized with a relatively small use of actual land surface.
- The elimination of the loss of warmth was achieved by using environmentallyfriendly insulation in the façade, the roof and the floors.
- The installation of high- quality solid wood windows with high R- value glass panes, sound barrier insulation and aluminum sheathing for weather protection (renewed painting is not necessary).
- The use of long- lasting, high- quality materials allows renovations to be avoided; eliminating the resulting rubble.
- Special insulation for the tiled- roof and insulation of all pipes and tanks.
Nearly the entire cooling required for the gastronomic area is generated through a central compressor, reducing the consumption considerably. The waste heat which is generated is re- directed for the generation of hot water.
All rooms have a central electrical switch which turns off the electricity when the room is deserted. This eliminates the stand- by function of the electrical equipment and the field around the bed can be removed from the electrical circuit- eliminating the ‘electro- smog’.
The newest standard of mini- bars has a highly efficient insulation (glass doors are refrained from) and absorption technology; the savings are approximately thirty percent (30%) of the energy which would be used for a conventional refrigerator of the same size. The operation is without a compressor and, therefore, quiet and self- thawing. The use of energy- saving light bulbs (that is, LED- technology), within the entire hotel, results in a savings of up to eighty percent (80%) of the energy used in comparison to standard light bulbs. Motion detectors, time- clocks and twilight/ daybreak switches are used to control the interior hallway lighting and for the exterior lighting.
The entire hotel is heated by the community heating complex from the Town of Heidelberg. The number of polluting chimneys is reduced with each connection to the community heating complex. The combined heat and power generation system accounts for approximately ninetyfive percent (95%) of the energy needs. This form of co- generation of heat and power is one of the most effective thermodynamic processes available; eliminating the transportation and the storage of fuels. The fact that the public utility company is nearby ensures an extra- efficient process.
Water, one of the most important of the basic necessities, is becoming scarcer on a global level. We are trying to minimize the consumption without imposing on the comfort of the guests. This is done, for example, with the use of flow- restrictors which have been installed on the sinks and the shower- heads in the rooms. The flushing of the toilets can be regulated with a water- saving push- button. The bath- tubs use thirty percent (30%) less water than normal bath- tubs due to the construction method which utilized a formfitting blueprint.
Water efficiency is paid attention to, as well, in the gastronomic section during washing and cleaning. An efficient glass- washing machine is used to clean the glasses. The dishwasher, in the kitchen, has a regulator which allows the use of a minimum amount of chemicals for the wash- cycle. These measures reduce the water consumption while, at the same time, keeping the regulations for hygienic standards intact.
A central water softening system was installed to assure the minimum use of chemicals and the protection of the water pipes. Disinfectants and urinal pucks were completely eliminated.
A lot of individuals generate a lot of garbage. The avoidance of garbage generation is practiced in all areas. The use of throw- away packaging is eliminated, even at breakfast, by purchasing larger packaging (for jam, honey, butter, muesli, etc) and serving them appropriately. Soap and shower gel are supplied in refill- units in the hotel rooms. Paper towels are gathered separately and are recycled with other paper products. There is a team- effort with professional garbage and recycling companies which guaranties a qualified waste disposal.
The use of regional and seasonal products for the kitchen, as well as the use of as many other regional products as possible, is of utmost importance. The use of regional products results in a short transportation distance, thereby adding to the freshness and flavour of the food; the total energy output balance is, also, positively influenced.