Ramada Santa Barbara is the only hotel on the South Coast to achieve the Environmentalist level, and joins the Fess Parker as the only other certified hotel in the Santa Barbara area. The Ramada Santa Barbara has several unique environmental features including a pool heated by solar panels, electric vehicle charging stations, LED lighting, permeable pavers, water-conserving fixtures, and plates made from sugarcane. But in addition to its physical features, the hotel implements a wide variety of green operational practices that go on behind-the-scenes.
"By institutionalizing many of the great things our staff members practice on a daily basis, like recycling responsibly, turning off the lights when they leave a room, and purchasing eco-friendly products whenever possible, we created a policy that simply formalizes our existing commitment to the environment," said Ramada Santa Barbara general manager Tom Patton.
Engaging staff members and implementing new technologies is an approach that is certainly paying off when it comes to going green. The CA Green Lodging designation is the hotel's third green certification in less than a year, following closely on the heels of its gold certification through Audubon International Green Lodging, and Santa Barbara County Green Business Certification.
Sundowner Sustainability Consulting, a Santa Barbara-based company that served as the hotel's consultants for all three certifications, has some insight into the secret of Ramada Santa Barbara's continued success.
"Each time we come back, Ramada Santa Barbara has really taken our recommendations to the next level, and they're not afraid to continue experimenting with new technologies and practices that will improve their environmental performance. Their willingness to innovate is what makes pursuing, and more importantly, achieving additional environmental certifications possible," said Sundowner Managing Partner Ellie Perry.
The California Green Lodging program, administered by the State of California's Department of General Services, recognizes lodging facilities that demonstrate best practices in water and energy conservation, waste minimization, recycling, environmentally friendly purchasing, program sustainability, and pollution prevention.