Pursuit Collection

Hotel stays can be a relaxing way to treat yourself, but they can also be tough on the environment. However, a few changes can make a big difference in reducing waste and conserving energy for an eco-friendly stay.

Promise to Place is a commitment that guides Pursuit’s operations in Canada, Iceland and the United States. It helps keep us accountable in three focus areas:

  • Stewardship: How we work to manage and improve our impact on the environment. 
  • Respect: How we make sure that everyone we cross paths with knows they’re warmly welcomed. 
  • Community: How we celebrate and support the places we’re lucky to live and work. 

Keep reading to learn four sustainable tips for your next hotel getaway.

Reduce waste during your stay

Even small steps to reduce waste have an impact. Use recycling bins provided by the hotel and ask a staff member if you can’t find one. The garbage bin liners in your room need to be removed even if you only drop one thing in, so consider using only one garbage can to save a plastic bag. You can also reduce single-use plastics, like water bottles and take-out cutlery, by packing a refillable bottle and travel utensils. Many hotels have moved to wall-mounted bottles but consider bringing your toiletries in reusable bottles to reduce unnecessary waste.

Lady reads from a book while enjoying a glass of wine

Pursuit partners with locally owned, eco-friendly skin and hair care producers to provide amenities in our Banff and Jasper hotels — all in refillable containers. The businesses include Aleppo Savon, ethically sourced, all-natural, cruelty-free soap handcrafted in Calgary; Jade Refillery, a package-free storefront in Jasper that produces all-natural, vegan and paraben-free body cream; and Rocky Mountain Soap Co, a Canmore-based company specializing in environmentally friendly skincare and hair products.

Water is one of the biggest resources used in any hotel, and you can cut down your consumption by taking shorter showers and choosing to have your linens and towels washed less frequently — most towels can be used two to three days before they need washing, suggests Keegan Maravillas, general manager, Glacier Park Lodge.

David Barbour, general manager of Banff Lodging and Banff Gondola, notes that properties in Banff and Jasper offer an optional stay-over service. This gives guests staying more than one night the opportunity to opt into not having their rooms serviced daily rather than receive it automatically. Choosing this option significantly reduces hotel laundry.

Don’t forget about food waste

Food waste all adds up, and many restaurants are taking care to address the issue. Increased in-room dining during the COVID-19 pandemic prompted Elk + Avenue Hotel in Banff to introduce in-room organics (composting) bins to divert food waste from landfills, from compostable packaging to uneaten portions. The program, which received the Town of Banff Trailblazer Award, was made possible through EcoStay and has diverted nearly 30,000 kilograms (about 66,138.6 lbs) of organic waste from landfills — roughly five times heavier than an elephant.

Four friends relax in a lounge area at Denali Backcountry Lodge

Choose hotels that support local

Tourism drives many local economies, and hotels can contribute by working with local suppliers and supporting community initiatives. Check out menus on hotel websites to see if they source local, seasonal products or if they sell locally made items in retail boutiques. Sourcing local means food and goods travel shorter distances, reducing pollution, the hotel’s overall carbon footprint and boosts local economies. Many of Pursuit’s hotel restaurants support sustainable suppliers and have farm-to-table partnerships. For example, Grouse Mountain Lodge in Montana partners with the Birch Creek Hutterite Colony and Brazen at the Mount Royal Hotel and Farm & Fire at the Elk + Avenue Hotel source local. Some hotels connect with the community through other initiatives, like partnering with guides to provide tours or guest experiences that share the local culture, while some have internship programs through local post-secondary institutions to support students on their chosen career path. The Talkeetna Alaska Lodge supports the Jessica Stevens Community Foundation (JSCF), which supports Talkeetna and Upper Susitna nonprofit initiatives such as healthcare, education, and social engagement programs.

Find ways to conserve energy

Like reducing waste, small choices go a long way toward the journey to a healthier, more sustainable planet. Conserve energy by turning off lights and unplugging electronics when not in use or look for rideshare and nearby public transit options if you’re venturing out.

A couple enjoy a beer and wine while sitting across from the fireplace

You can also research how hotels are implementing energy-saving initiatives. Banff Jasper Collection use and EcoFund towards environmental projects to reduce impact and improve sustainability, such as installing LED lighting and HVAC retrofitting to conserve energy.

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