Hotels, by their very nature, can be some of the least-environmentally places around, but these days that reputation is changing. Hotels—both their designs and their furnishings—are looking more sustainable as developers and owners increasingly go for LEED certification for reasons both altruistic and practical.
To that end, designers and architects are incorporating more sustainable products into their projects, prompting manufacturers to expand their ranges to meet the increased demand. For Bette Lissak, president of Paradigm Trends, a manufacturer of accessories with a large base of hospitality clients, “It started about five years ago and has been getting stronger and evolving.”
For starters, over the last 30 years or so, the company has been meeting their clients’ needs by offering metal products made with recycled aluminum, stainless steel and brass. More recently, Lissak notes, there was a push into bamboo. “Now they want something that looks natural rather than highly finished,” she says, as designers envision rooms that have more of a home-like—and less of an industrial—feel. Enter mango wood. It’s widely available and can take all sorts of finish treatments. “It’s more adaptable, well-priced and easy for us to use,” notes Lissak.
Some of the company’s new products also address earth-friendly requirements. For example, by popular demand, Paradigm Trends now offers a dual-chamber wastebasket so trash and recycling can be separated in-room, a new mandate for types of green certification. With clients ranging from The Ritz-Carlton to Canyon Ranch, Lissak doesn’t see the shift to sustainable products as a merely a flash in the pan. “People are looking at it as an asset,” Lissak points out.