Moving Towards Sustainability:

Australian Hotels take action to become more sustainable.

A number of hotels in Australia are leading the pack when it comes to working to improve sustainability in their business and operational practices.

Changes have been a long time coming in Australia, with the Alto Hotel on Bourke in Melbourne being one of the few hotels to totally embrace the concept in the last decade. But others are starting to make changes to their business model to move towards sustainability. In this article we highlight a few of the best environmental practices in Australian hotels.

Alto Hotel on Bourke


What makes a hotel more sustainable?

Some of the 10 best sustainability trends and initiatives for hotels are relating to the following areas:

  • Energy conservation
  • Amenities (no little bottles adding to the world’s trash)
  • Waste reduction and efficiency
  • Cleaning products used wisely with minimum impact on the environment
  • Local food products offered at the hotel restaurant
  • Guests encouraged to make sustainable decisions
  • Promotion of local culture
  • Water conservation
  • Operational changes and green teams
  • Promotion of sustainable means of transportation

Crystalbrook Kingsley

This fabulous Newcastle hotel is leading the way in its initiatives to minimize its environmental footprint. Crystalbrook Kingsley is sustainably-led, simply sophisticated and steeped in history.

We particularly love their “Footprint Free Stays” concept. Guests can take the pledge to minimise their environmental footprint while on holiday and get $10 in dining and drinking credits.

To experience a Footprint Free Stay, guests can:

Opt out of having their room serviced
Say no to single-use plastics
Turn off unnecessary electronics
Recycle all waste items that can be re-purposed – there are separate bins separate bins in the room for guests to recycle.

Image of hotel room

In March, 2022, the hotel group became the first in Australia to introduce 100% waste free bathroom amenities across its portfolio.


As well, the Crystalbrook Collection of hotels continues to build on an extensive recycling program including glass, cardboard and co-mingled products.

The hospitality group sources 80% of its produce from within a three-hour drive of its properties to minimise transport pollution and uses recycled products where possible such as wooden guest room key cards and upcycled coat hangers.

Image of wooden keys


At the restaurant, guests can read the “Climate Calorie” info of selected dishes, including whether the ingredients in each dish are locally sourced within a 3 hour drive, sustainably grown or caught, are culturally considered, using native ingredients and working with indigenous producers, consciously reduce waste using the whole ingredient and is supplied to the restaurant in eco-friendly packaging.

Read more about Crystalbrook Kinsgley and the hotel’s sustainability initiatives.


Amora Hotel Jamison Sydney

This 5 star Sydney hotel is leading the way in its initiatives to minimize its envionmental footprint. They have committed to reducing their carbon footprint by 40% by 2030 and meeting the Paris Agreement Goals of Net Zero emissions by 2050. Setting the standard for other Australian hotels to follow with their sustainability initiatives.

Hotel room

Much of tourism’s environmental footprint is embedded as carbon in the resources purchased, processed and consumed. The Amora Hotel Jamison Sydney monitors their resource use and apply best green practices to limit wastage of resources in real-time and share updates hourly with guests and staff.

They have turned sustainability into a better guest experience by giving each guest My Green Butler, a free service that advises guests on wellness, how to improve their comfort, shares resource use feedback, offers energy and water-saving tips, whilst also detailing of our fundraising for nature.

Like most hotels, they invite guests to re-use their linen and towels, which minimises laundering linen. Waste is sorted and wherever possible, recyclables are reused.

Amora Hotel bathroom

Amora Hotel Jamison Sydney is investing in more energy-efficient equipment across the hotel, and they monitor electricity use every minute to guide in conserving energy and limiting waste. They encourage their environmentally conscious guests to take advantage of the two Tesla Stations conveniently located in the hotel car park.

Amora Hotel Jamison is set to offer an innovative Green Event service for conferences, meetings and weddings. Event organisers, delegates and guests can help to conserve resources by collaborating with staff to minimise room temperature cooling/heating changes and avoid material wastage. Menus are designed around seasonal local produce and serving beverages in recyclable/re-usable containers. This way no single service plastic items nor plastic water bottles are used.

Read more about Amora Hotel Jamison Sydney and their sustainability initiatives…

Alto Hotel on Bourke

Guest involvement at the Alto Hotel in the Melbourne CBD is welcome, yet not necessary as most systems and initiatives are designed to work automatically without any effort from their guests.

The Alto Hotel is a carbon neutral hotel, powered by 100% renewable energy and leads as one of Melbourne’s few resource smart and environmentally friendly rated hotels. They have reduced their carbon footprint to an average of 13.5kg per room, compared to estimate of 24-26kg as set by the Sustainable Tourism Cooperative Research Council. Their initiatives have resulted in several awards for environmental and hospitality excellence.

Rooms are provided with dual-chamber waste bins and guests are encouraged to help by separating their waste into recyclable and general waste. Other initiatives to vastly minimise their waste output, includes:
• Installing body wash, moisturiser, shampoo and conditioner dispensers in showers rather than using disposable containers. All toiletries used are biodegradable.
• Using dual chamber eco-bins in all rooms where guests can sort their recyclables.
• Processing all organic waste on the premises, the worm castings being used as fertiliser.
• Using recycled paper and toner cartridges in the offices.
• Using recycled toilet paper and facial tissues.

Alto Hotel

Alto Hotel in conjunction with Melbourne Rooftop Honey and 9 other inner city beekeepers is part of a project to ensure the survival of bees in Melbourne urban areas.  Approximatley 65 per cent of agricultural production in Australia relies on the pollination efforts of wild bees and managed hives. Guests are then offered honey from the hotel’s own rooftop beehive & fresh herbs from the planter box garden.


Energy conservation is another area where the Alto Hotel on Bourke excels. Energy consumption of 37 megajoules per guest per night is far below the best practice target of 140 megajoules – an amazingly small amount, demonstrating the benefits of their energy conservation initiatives. This is achieved through a vast array of measures to minimise the hotel’s energy consumption:
• Card operated power in all rooms.
• 6-star rated inverter air conditioners that use 40% less power than non-inverter air conditioning.
• “Green tinted” triple glazed windows that absorb UV rays and keep guest rooms cooler.
• Purchasing 100% “Green Power”.
• Double insulation which improves sound proofing, and also saves on heating and cooling.
• Windows that can be opened completely to improve air flow and reduce the need for air conditioning.
• 100% of primary lighting and 70% of secondary lighting uses compact fluorescents.

Car Charging Station

The Alto Hotel also offers free parking for guests arriving with electric or hybrid vehicles with free recharging from 100% green energy.

Alto Hotel on Bourke

Read more about the Alto Hotel on Bourke and their green hotel initiatives…