Starwood inks deal to recycle hotel soap, shampoo

Discussion in 'Starwood | Preferred Guest' started by sobore, Apr 23, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. sobore
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    sobore Gold Member

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    http://travel.usatoday.com/hotels/p...ens-to-unused-hotel-soap-and-shampoo/167172/1

    Ever wonder what happens to used soap and shampoo at hotels?
    Most are thrown away. About 1 million bars of soap are tossed out daily by U.S. hotels, according to Clean the World, an Orlando-based nonprofit organization that recycles used and unused soap for distribution to developing nations and domestic homeless shelters.
    In time for Earth Day, Clean the World announced that it inked an agreement with Starwood Hotels to collect and recycle soaps, shampoos, conditioners, lotions and gels.
    The deal is Clean the World's first to cover an entire multi-brand hotel network.
     
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  2. SC Flier
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    SC Flier Gold Member

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    "About 1 million bars of soap are tossed out daily by U.S. hotels."

    If frequent travelers really want to help, buy a travel soap box to allow you to reuse your bar of soap.

    Edited to add: The recycled soap does not get returned for use at the hotels.
     
  3. Scottrick
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    Scottrick Gold Member

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    I like the idea. I assume these are the used bars and bottles that they're processing, not the leftover ones that are put out but not used? They always did seem to get wasted. Some hotels have started provided bars with a hole in the middle, which makes sense because you get the same large surface area but less total volume. Of course no Americans would ever buy recycled soap 'cause we're all sissies here. I think more hotels should start using liquid soap, as long as it's not the cheap pink stuff you see in public restrooms. Less mess, less waste.
     
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  4. jbcarioca
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    jbcarioca Gold Member

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    That is a really good idea. Some airline lounge showers already do that. IIRC AF at CDG, AA LHR, Virgin JFK and several others are already doing it. Makes sense to me.
     
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  5. KyRoamer
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    KyRoamer Gold Member

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    When you think where that soap has been, you have to hope the recycling has high standards for sanitizing the soap.
     
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  6. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    Indeed... I'll start bringing my own soap if they start recycling.

    Between this and the sheets not being changed, it's getting ickier and ickier to stay at a hotel. :)
     
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  7. Scottrick
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    Scottrick Gold Member

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    They're not planning on giving the recycled soap to customers. They plant to give it to people who can't afford soap in third-world countries.

    As for sanitation, my guess is they're using autoclaves, which use heat and pressure to kill just about anything. It is not simple boiling. We use them all the time in research to sterilize equipment and reagents. Even though they stink, believe me, they work wonders. ;) I have never had problems with contamination due to a bad autoclave, only due to my only negligence afterward.
     
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  8. SC Flier
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    SC Flier Gold Member

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    From the article:
    "Since its founding two years ago, Clean the World has distributed more than 8 million bars of soap to families in the U.S. and more than 40 countries, including Haiti, Japan, Zimbabwe, Uganda, India, Honduras, Mexico and Albania. It estimates its efforts have diverted about 550 tons of hotel waste from polluting landfills in the U.S. and Canada."

    I did some reading up on this partnership last year when I learned that the Westin Riverfront was a partner with them.

    Here is the agency's website:
    http://www.cleantheworld.org/

    From their FAQ:
    "Soap is recycled using two methods: re-batching and sanitization"
    (Additional details about these methods are in the FAQ.)
     
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  9. KENNECTED
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    KENNECTED Silver Member

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    Some property, like the SLS Beverly Hills do. However, some felt the bottles of shampoo and soap gave this particular luxury property a "cheap" feel when it came to in-room/bathroom amenities. I totally disagree with that assessment.
     
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  10. thetravelloop
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    thetravelloop Silver Member

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    I love the irony of dirty soap.
     
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  11. SC Flier
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    SC Flier Gold Member

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    If a liquid dispenser looks classy, I'm good with it. If it looks industrial or doesn't work, it's cheap.

    Alofts use Bliss products. A bar of soap at the sink. Liquid foaming soap and shampoo in the showers. I like the bar soap, and it travels well (I'll pack a bar for reuse at my next destination rather than unwrapping a new bar every day.) I very much dislike the shower gel; don't let it get in your eyes because it really stings! I also once had a problem with one of the shower gel dispensers that simply wouldn't pump even though the dispenser was full.

    I dislike Westin's current soaps. This is a real shame because I loved many of the Westin soaps in the years before this current line, and it's impacted my overall opinion of the Westin brand. I especially dislike the leaf-shaped bar soaps that get soft so easily and make a mess of the soap dish. These are not bar soaps that I would pack for reuse.
     
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  12. SC Flier
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    And the irony that soaps actually pollute landfills rather than help clean them up. :D
     
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  13. KENNECTED
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    I think "classy" is subjective. :) I think a dispenser has to function well (especially over a long period of time) along with work in the design scheme. If those two things are right, I can't complain.

    I've yet to stay at an Aloft so I cannot comment on their products.

    I don't like Westin bathroom amenities at all. I didn't like the previous set of amenities either. They were horrible and did not moisturize one damn bit! Oh and that fragrance/smell...OMG! It smelled like old ladies retirement village! But you're right, that leaf starts to disintegrates as soon as it comes in contact with water. After washing your hands with that "bar" of soap and letting is sit for a while, it looks more like a suppository than a leaf.

    I've stayed at a few Sheratons and their products aren't great, but not bad. Just average, but nothing really to compliment or complain. IIRC, the Four Points amenities are decent and are a Bliss product.

    I do like the W Bliss products a W Hotels, on occasion I buy the products. I was a consumer of the Bliss line prior to it's partnership with W hotels.
     
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  14. SC Flier
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    This discussion reminds me of something unique about SPG's Mexican Haciendas: IIUC, their soap products and containers are made by the local residents.
     
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  15. canucklehead
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    canucklehead Gold Member

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    If SPG can find a re-use for the bars of soap (with the exception of leaving it for the next guest, I am all for it! I usually use one bar and transport it between the shower/sink, but I like sc flier's suggestion of taking my own bar with me and using it instead of the hotel one. I also totally agree with the green leaf soap, they are great for decoration (I gave a bunch for my sister and SIL to decorate their guest bathroom! :)

    The liquid dispensers remind me of the showers in the gym. While it may be fine for the gym, it lacks finesse in a hotel. Having said that, I agree with sc flier, if it can integrate into a bathroom and still look nice, then I would be all for it. My other concern for mass use dispensers in resident coliform and other bacteria. Similar to anything that gets mass-use (hand-dryers...), it can pick up bugs and they can live there. Also, if they decided to switch to bactericidal soap (e.g. chlorhexidine, triclosan....), I would be dead against it -- those are a quick path to superbugs! :mad:

    I think the only ones I have liked from the SPG line were the Bliss or the Molton Brown products, though I did appreciate the Laboratoire Remède line at the St Regis, but that would probably break the amenity budget! :D
     
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  16. avflyer
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    Kudos to Starwood.
     
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  17. RestlessLocationSyndrome
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    As with any program with the intent of being green.... is this truly green? Does it really make environmental sense to collect soap from all over the US, recycle it, and then to ship it other countries for reuse? There is money that is donated to support the operations of Clean the World organization... is this the most efficient use of funds or would it be better to just use the funds to buy soap at cost from the large manufacturers instead? Don't get me wrong, I am all for being green and recycling... I just hope that when we undertake green activities, they truly are green in execution, not just intent.
     
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  18. I totaly aggree about dispensers I did find a great one dispenser that is well made and classy and utilizes whatever brand the property is using check out youtube for Aquamenities http://youtu.be/NxYQmbfshXs
     
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  19. ACMM
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    Welcome to milePoint kaqua. Glad to have you onboard and congratulations on your first post :)
     
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  20. jupper
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    jupper Silver Member

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    I have found that at some hotels they both offer your the small bottles, but then for example also have dispensers with other products, like Dove and such. I'm partial to the smaller bottles for on the go, but if I'm staying for a couple of days, the dispensers sit more well with me.

    Then again, I bring some of my own stuff with me, if I really wanna smell nice for the ladies. :)
     

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