Beyond Green: Myer Hotels Preserving Branson's Beauty

Myer Hotel properties have converted to saltwater pools which are better for the environment and extremely popular with hotel guests because the water is easier on their eyes and skin.

The Ozark Mountains is what attracts groups to Branson and that beauty needs to be preserved, said Gail Myer, vice president of operations for Myer Hotels, a string of six family-owned hotels in Branson.

“We believe as part of the stewardship of running these hotels and stewardship that comes with belonging to this community, we need to do our part to preserve that beauty and give our customers the ability to participate in it,” said Myer.

Myer Hotel properties include Best Western Music Pointe InnBest Western Music Capital InnComfort InnComfort Inn & SuitesHoliday Inn Express, and Quality Inn.

While “going green” has been an increasing trend in the hotel industry, Myer’s interest in sustainability goes way back to his educational roots- he has engineering degree.

“So early on I was taught that efficiency was an economic concept,” he said. “When I came to the hotel industry it was natural to look for ways to work on sustainability.”

They have a comprehensive strategy in place that has several prongs.

“Our customers love it. You can swim in there all day. It’s easier on your skin, it’s easier on your eyes. It’s more natural,” he said.One of the most popular efforts - in terms of hotel guest enjoyment - are the saltwater pools. Myer converted the pools from chlorine to salt water.

Another effort has to do with chemical use in the rooms and laundry. Hotel guests can opt out of having their room cleaned every day which decreases the amount of chemicals used. In the laundry, staff use an enzyme-based cleaner which is less hazardous, too. Also, linens are washed on the cold cycle which uses less energy.

At select hotels, they have installed energy systems that monitor room occupancy and will cut back air conditioning or heat in non-occupied rooms.“We have recycling system where we recycling cardboard and paper. We try to reuse goods as much as possible in our office operations. We just installed the largest solar panel by a business in Taney County. We installed 500 solar panels. That is a combination of efforts by us, Empire Electric, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and Missouri Sun Solar,” he said.

Those have been installed in phases as it takes about two and half years to see a pay back on those systems so they are a significant investment.

Myer Hotels are also replacing traditional lights with LED including testing LED lighting in parking lots.

These efforts have been appreciated by customers, said Myer.

Chris Myer, who heads up marketing for Myer Hotels, said groups, particularly the motor coach industry, is an important part of the business.

The hotels also attracts and caters to a large number of special interest groups, churches, and youth sports teams.

The efforts by the Myer team help ensure Branson’s natural charm is preserved so it continues to be a popular destination for group travel.

For more information:

http://www.myerhotels.com/

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