SOURCE: Seven4one Inc.

October 20, 2008 06:00 ET

First "Green" Southern California Hotel Combines Modern Luxury With Eco Principles

At Last... Uber-Chic Lodging and Green Responsibility Intersect at the Beach

LAGUNA BEACH, CA--(Marketwire - October 20, 2008) - Seven4one in Laguna Beach, CA is setting the "green" standard in the emergent trend of boutique lodging that's chic with a vision. The first truly green and modern hotel in Orange County, California, features a list of more than 35 "green" infrastructural and operational elements that enhance virtually every aspect of its daily operations. With this comprehensively green approach -- from spa water on in-room tap, bamboo-blend bath towels, and green-certified mattresses to card-less door locks, a largely organic kitchen, lighting sensors, and Energy Star appliances -- Seven4one differentiates itself from other hotels in the region with a forward-thinking approach to traditional hotel operations.

"It's not that difficult to think green, plan green, and operate green," notes S4O General Manager, Julia Cattaneo. As more vacationers actively seek green accommodations where they can indulge with a conscience, Seven4one finds itself sought out for more than just its sleek Euro-style furnishings, intimate lounges, and rock-star-worthy personal attention. It hopes to serve as a model for the industry. "Both management and staff are personally committed to environmental sustainability and believe in reducing our eco-footprint as much as possible," says Cattaneo. "We each adhere to strict operational policies and procedures and measure our progress against meaningful benchmarks that are related to hospitality best practices and responsible business practices."

There is no sacrifice in the hip vibe, quality of products, or the guest experience as a result of the 12-room hotel's deeply green business model. Quite the contrary, says Cattaneo. "Seven4one caters to a discerning clientele, so we are very aware of the fine line between luxury and eco-friendly." As an example, Molton Brown of London, the property's purveyor of bath and body amenities, designs their high-end, environmentally sensitive products in refillable dispensers. "Our guests have really enjoyed the amazing Molton Brown line. They feel good about doing a little something for the environment while enjoying a superior bathing experience."

Molton Brown's eco-luxe products are just the beginning of S40's green-minded interior design and architectural inspiration. What continues in the bathroom with refreshing yet low-flow showerheads and sink aerators, dual-flush, low-flow toilets from TOTO, and hot water from Noritz ISO 14001 certified tank-less water heaters (providing continual on-demand hot water that eliminate the wasted energy of traditional water heaters), extends to every part of the guest rooms and suites, common areas, and behind-the-scenes operations.

Keyless and card-less pin-activated door locks from KABA mean no more traditional plastic keys, while LG's 42-inch LCD flat-screen TVs and Art Cool HVAC systems use low energy and eco-friendly components. Seven4one incorporates further green innovations through indoor and outdoor lighting sensors, energy-efficient windows, Energy Star appliances, and a decidedly modern landscape of native and low-water-use plants. Guests appreciate the fresh air and natural light of an ocean-view second-floor terrace and an outdoor courtyard that's peaceful by day, jazz-laden martini lounge by night.

Operational and service-related initiatives include a guest room towel and linen optimization policy, complimentary in-room spa water in lieu of overpriced plastic water bottles, chemical-free cleaning and laundry products, and daily newspapers on a request-only basis. Custom designed mattresses are green-certified and part of the EPA's Waste-Wise Partnership. Hotel-wide, paper, plastic, and glass are recycled, single-use packaging is limited, and public restrooms feature laundered cotton towels (instead of paper).

The kitchen at S4O contributes to the hotel's green philosophy by utilizing organic and locally grown or produced provisions. Chef de Cuisine Jessica Alexander avoids char-broiled and deep-fried foods and often procures foods that are natural, cage-free, or wild. The hotel offers the latest in organic spirits and purchases only free-trade coffees and teas. Bartenders pour many of S4O's signature martinis with organic vodka, while many of the hotel's wine offerings come from wine makers who practice environmental and sustainable stewardship.

"Being first in a market has its benefits," says Daniel Sussman, Managing Partner of The Brendan Group, the hotel's developer. "As the first truly green and modern hotel in Orange County, California, and specifically world-famous Laguna Beach, we're afforded some great marketing and promotional opportunities with other like-minded businesses." The small size of the property makes it ideal for group buyouts. As Sussman points out, "Companies that practice a policy of green travel and meetings find themselves right at home and right with the environment when staying or meeting at our unique, contemporary hotel at the beach."

Seven4one's goal, says Sussman, is, "To help guests quickly immerse themselves into the laid-back So Cal beach lifestyle, experience levels of service typically reserved for the rich and famous, and dine on 5-star cuisine -- all while keeping a watchful eye on our environment."

In just two months on the Orange County hotel scene, Seven4one has quickly attracted guests from across the globe. "The Brendan Group plans to take this progressive business model to other cities in the years ahead," says The Brendan Group Co-Founder Brent Eneix. "We are confident that our solutions will enable continued growth -- in revenue, in brand awareness, and in earth-friendly operations. We have already begun the search for our second location and will definitely incorporate everything we have learned about developing and operating a green hotel into our next project." As many of S40's guests would agree, "It has become second nature to think and act green," notes Eneix.

Seven4one is a proud member of the Green Hotel Association and is an EPA Waste-Wise Partner.

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