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Sustainable and Responsible Tourism » Blogs » Green Key Eco-Rating Program -Island "Green" Hotels

  • Green Key Eco-Rating Program -Island "Green" Hotels

    Posted by Shawna Quinn April 25, 2014 - 303 views - 0 comments - 0 likes - #green key  #eco hotels  #green accommodation 

    The hospitality industry is evolving, as is all industry, and environmental responsibility and sustainability is now a priority in how companies conduct and market their business. Many consumers demand environmental sensitivity when they travel, and tour companies, restaurants, and hotels are being forced to consider how their businesses are perceived in terms of their sustainable practices.


    In some ways, this has led to problems with “green-washing”, where corporations label their enterprise as “eco-friendly” or “green” without having to be accountable to these claims. However, initiatives such as the Hotel Association of Canada’s Green Key Eco-Rating Program have provided a way for businesses in accommodations to audit, benchmark, and reduce their environmental footprint. It also allows consumers to have a quick reference to how well an hotelier is performing when making responsible decisions on where to stay.


    The Green Key program awards businesses a rating from one to five keys based on their operations. Below is a description of each rating, but you can learn more on the Green Key Eco-Rating website.


    Rating Descriptions

    1 Green Key

    A hotel that has taken steps to reduce environmental impacts by analyzing its operations and identifying opportunities for improvement. An action plan focusing on resource conservation and waste minimization has been established, and is supported by a firm commitment to continual improvement.

    2 Green Keys

    A hotel that has taken considerable strides to identify environmental impacts and implement policies and programs to minimize its ecological footprint. A firm commitment to continual improvement has resulted in programs and actions that have shown effective results.

    3 Green Keys

    A hotel that has taken significant steps to protect the environment. Strong environmental programs, best management practices, training programs, and engineering solutions have been implemented which have benefited the environment and the local community.

    4 Green Keys

    A hotel that has shown national industry leadership and commitment to protecting the environment through wide ranging policies and practices. Hotel has mature programs in place that involve management, employees, guests, and the public, and which have shown substantial and measurable results.

    5 Green Keys

    A hotel that exemplifies the highest standards of environmental and social responsibility throughout all areas of operations. The hotel employs cutting edge technologies, policies, and programs that set the international standard for sustainable hotel operations.



    Vancouver Island has a plethora of accommodation options that have committed to environmental initiatives and have registered with the Green Key program. Below is a list of some of the highest rated eco-friendly options on the island.


    4 Green Keys


    Sooke Harbour House (Sooke) –

    Best Western Chemainus Festival Inn (Chemainus) –

    Howard Johnson Hotel & Suites (Victoria) –

    Coast Victoria Harbourside Hotel & Marina (Victoria) –

    Inn at Laurel Point (Victoria) –

    Comfort Hotel Victoria (Victoria) –

    Harbour Towers Hotel & Suites (Victoria) –

    Sandman Hotel Victoria (Victoria) –

    The Oswego Hotel (Victoria) –

    Days Inn Victoria on the Harbour (Victoria) –

    Hotel Grand Pacific (Victoria) –

    Hotel Rialto (Victoria) –

    Chateau Victoria Hotel and Suites (Victoria)

    Magnolia Hotel & Spa (Victoria) –

    Coast Bastion Hotel (Victoria)

    Tigh-Na-Mara Seaside Spa Resort & Conference Centre (Parksville) –

    Black Rock Oceanfront Resort (Ucluelet) –



    5 Green Keys


    The Fairmont Empress (Victoria) –

    The Parkside Hotel and Spa (Victoria) -


    What are yor thoughts on this program? Do you think it's a successful way of making hoteliers accountable for their eco-practices? Do you have other "green" accommodations to add to the list? We'd love to hear your input!