I stayed at the conference hotel while in Portland, called the DoubleTree. I noticed the compost bin in the lobby right away and realized this was no ordinary hotel. In my room the little garbage cans were split in two, one side for recyclables, the other for non. Tying in with our food policy conference, the hotel had organized a behind the scenes look at their waste management system – what a great idea. Sadly, I missed both tours because I was on a tour myself.
Conference organizers told us that the hotel had a real commitment to local food – and that was evident by the delicious, seasonal meals we were served. All the chefs trouped in at the closing plenary just so we could applaud them. It was a nice moment. Food workers don’t get enough credit and are often underpaid and exploited. Learned a lot about that at the conference. Turns out the DoubleTree has an actual pledge to purchase local and sustainable products across the board. They practise triple bottom line accounting, which includes caring for their staff.
The hotel layout was ideal for a conference. (They specialize in green meetings too.) Everything very convenient with good service on the double. Central location, right on the Max line. Across from a giant mall – for those of us who like to break up the workshops with a shopping tour.
When I got home, I looked at their web site. Seems they were the first sustainable hotel in Portland with a Green Seal certification to prove it. And they publish an annual sustainability report.
I also liked that when we got off the Max and didn’t know which direction to go, we could look up and see those two trees on the tower. Green beacon.