Sustainability

Stephen Bailey
Hotel Britomart - An Eco-Hotel in a Capital City
Hotel Britomart - An Eco-Hotel in a Capital City
Stephen Bailey

New Zealand’s first 5 Green Star Design and Build Hotel is located in Middle Earth. Actually, it’s not. You may expect a top New Zealand eco hotel to be deep in wilderness, but Hotel Britomart is located in downtown, waterfront Auckland. 

It’s on the dockside in what was recently one of New Zealand’s most neglected areas. The 19th-century warehouses have been revived and Hotel Britomart is part of a major neighbourhood renewal project. 

Hotel Britomart

As a 5 Green Star Hotel there are the basics, such as refillable toiletries and plastic-free mini-bars. Duvets are made with fibre from recycled plastic bottles and of course there is organic linen. 

What’s impressive is how sustainability started with construction, by incorporating the Green Star standards. Hayley Koerbin, the sustainability lead on the project explains.

“There are no government or council regulations for having Green Star certification. A lot see cost as a barrier. But if you think about the building and design it well from the beginning, you won’t see an increase in costs. So sustainability features are integrated into the design, rather than being an additional and costly add on.”

Hayley Koerbin
Hayley Koerbin

80% of the hotel’s construction waste has been re-used or recycled. The building is designed to minimise temperature changes, which means less heating and up to 50% lower greenhouse gas emissions. Reclaimed water was used in the construction and all taps come with efficiency fittings. Koerbin also highlights the use of natural light to reduce energy use. 

Northland driftwood has been dipped in brass and used to create the door handles. Stonemasons crafted bluestone boulders and some of the walls are simply earth, cracked and blackened using a local new Zealand technique. 

Hotel Britomart opened its doors to guests on October 1st 2020. The interesting question is how the sustainable approach to construction will be maintained via all the hotel’s operations. But certainly, achieving a 5 Green Star Design and Build standard suggests a long-term focus on a heightened level of sustainable practices. 

The Rangai Suite

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