With Earth Day on our mind, it’s time for a quick check of the greenest hotels in New York City.
The super-greens are hotels that have earned LEED certification, third party proof of adherence to the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design standards set by the U.S Green Building Council.
As with most worthy things, getting certified isn’t easy. A building must meet a battery of requirements in six categories including water efficiency, energy and atmosphere, indoor environmental quality and innovation in design. Those that check all the boxes are categorized as Certified, Silver, Gold or Platinum.
Don’t look for LEED certification at budget properties. Certification is an amenity requiring time and investment, and hotels can charge for it. But besides a safe, healthy atmosphere, guests will know they’re staying in a building that typically has cut back energy usage by 30 to 50 percent, trimmed carbon emissions by 35 percent and eliminated 70 percent of solid waste.
Our latest informal tally shows nine New York City properties that check all the LEED boxes.
While Platinum status remains elusive, five hotels have grabbed the Gold — Conrad New York, Crosby Street Hotel, Element New York Times Square, Intercontinental New York Times Square and the NoMad Hotel.
Three hotels own Silver status — Andaz 5th Avenue, Andaz Wall Street and Fairfield Inn & Suites Midtown Manhattan/Penn Station
The New York Edition hotel is Certified.
Though they haven’t achieved LEED certification, a fast-growing contingent of the city’s hotels are embracing environmental initiatives. It’s become increasingly easy to find properties that recycle paper, cardboard, ink cartridges and aluminum, sport roof gardens and sedum plantings to regulate building temperatures, offer duo-flush toilets that conserve water and join soap recycling programs that collect used soap to be sanitized and sent to nations in need of it, to name a few popular green initiatives.
Our informal list of hotels participating in environmental programs includes Aloft Harlem, the Benjamin, Courtyard New York/Chelsea, The Greenwich, The High Line Hotel, Ink48, the Intercontinental New York Barclay, The Muse, The New York Hilton/Midtown, The Lotte New York Palace, One Hotel Central Park, One Hotel Brooklyn Bridge, Refinery Hotel, Park Central Hotel, Iberostar 70 Park Avenue, Sheraton New York Times Square, Westin New York Grand Central, Westin New York Times Square. Westhouse New York and Whitby Hotel.
If you know of any we missed, let us know.