Aloft & Element Hotels
Miami hotels make guests happier and reduce environmental impact with energy technology subscription.
LED Lighting and Smart Thermostats
The Aloft Miami Doral and The Element Miami Doral, sister hotels under Starwood Hotel & Resorts - which recently merged with Marriott - are go-to destinations for tech-savvy Miami visitors. The Aloft hotel features mobile check-in, Siri voice-activated rooms, and a robotic butler named Botlr. The Element, a leader for environmentally conscious hotels, is LEED certified Silver by the US Green Building Council and boasts water-efficient fixtures, ENERGY STAR® rated appliances, and an extensive recycling program.
OnPeak Energy is a Florida-based Energy Performance Contracting (EPC) company that works with building owners to evaluate, install, and finance investments in energy saving equipment. OnPeak approached Vanessa Vielma, Hotel Complex General Manager, with a proposal to install a combination of LED lighting and smart thermostats in both hotels. Vielma saw the technologies' potential to improve both guest experience and sustainability. However, she needed a solid financial argument to justify the expense.
To prove the value of the smart thermostats solution, OnPeak implemented a demo in select rooms in both hotels. The thermostats are equipped with occupancy sensors and Energy Management Settings (EMS) which automatically set back temperature when rooms are unoccupied and recover temperature when guests return.
Over the course of 30 days, the thermostats generated a 40% reduction in HVAC runtime in the participating rooms. Impressed by the savings, Vielma approved an installation of the thermostats for all of the guest rooms in both hotels
To supplement the HVAC savings, OnPeak designed a comprehensive LED lighting retrofit for the hotels, including the lobbies, stairways, service corridors, parking lots, guest rooms, bathrooms, gym, pool, and accent lighting.
OnPeak didn't stop there. Recognizing the need for hotels to preserve capital for core improvements, they took their proposal a step further by adding the lighting system into the Sparkfund subscription contract. The subscription allows the hotel to instead pay for the lighting over time from their operating budget. It also guarantees the performance of the lights to ensure guest comfort and safety throughout the facilities.
The comprehensive LED upgrade has reduced lighting loads by 58%. The smart thermostats, by optimizing HVAC runtime, have generated savings of $172 per room per year. The thermostats have also created additional maintenance savings by lowering humidity in the guest rooms and preventing subsequent damage to wallpaper.
The subscription was the perfect strategy to get new, energy saving technology into our hotels. Without any capital investment, we were able to improve guest experience, further our sustainability leadership, and lower our energy costs.
Vanessa Vielma, Hotel Complex General Manager