Catalonia Riviera Maya Resort and Catalonia Yucatan Beach awarded Green Globe certification
Green Globe congratulates Catalonia Riviera Maya and Yucatan Beach on achieving their first certification and their impressive compliance score of 82%.
Itzel Lezama, Coordinator Hygiene Control, Quality and Environment said: “We understand the relationship between sustainability and tourism. We are aware of the importance of natural resources, safeguarding local culture, social development of communities and economic justice. Therefore, we are committed to sustainable actions."
Ms. Lezama leads the planning and organization of activities by the Green Team within the resort.
Catalonia Riviera Maya and Yucatan Beach founded its own original Green Team in 2009. This group helped establish an environmental policy promoting the conservation of natural resources. The property focused on reducing energy consumption and the generation of solid and hazardous waste. In addition, environmentally friendly and ecological activities were designed to raise awareness about sustainability amongst employees, guests and suppliers.
In 2010, the Green Team was renamed ECOCAT. Members of ECOCAT, comprised of the executive and operating committees of the hotels continue to meet monthly to plan cultural, social and environmental events. In addition, new ecological ideas and solutions that will improve the hotels’ sustainable performance are provided. ECOCAT also arranges staff training courses and workshops on environmental matters such as basic ecology, hazardous waste and waste management.
Green Team initiatives are wide ranging and include significant annual events such as Earth Hour. The team organizes daytime activities for guests culminating in celebrations when the property turns off lights at night. Furthermore, all visitors and staff are encouraged to participate in the International Coastal Cleanup and Corps organized by ZOFEMAT (Federal Maritime Zone) once a year. Staff also join in with guests during regular weekly activities such as Ecological Day and beach clean ups.
Various environmental projects take place within the hotels’ grounds. At the nursery Green Team members conduct tours with guests exploring the native flora that grow within the region. Visitors can also learn about the importance of reforesting by participating in gardening activities on Arbor Day and Plant Seeds Day. And a composting area has been made to utilize fruit scraps and coffee grounds from the hotel kitchens.
Catalonia Riviera Maya and Yucatan Beach have implemented community programs which assist regional development. The hotel aims to support suppliers and craftspeople in the Mayan community by selling local honey, coffee and traditional drinks as well as jewelry, coffee mugs and calendars printed on recycled paper.
Catalonia Riviera Maya and Yucatan Beach sponsor the primary school “Miguel Ortega Navarrete" in Playa del Carmen, Quintana Roo. The hotels provide maintenance in all facilities and green areas. Hotel staff also generously support schools by gathering, donating and delivering school supplies to children and young people within Mayan communities located throughout the state. Also, with assistance from hotel partners, perishable foods are collected and donated to Mayan families.
While toys were collected and later distributed to children in Mayan communities in January to celebrate Three Kings Day.
On a fun note, the hotels have a mascot called Yaaxi which translates to Green Turtle in Maya. Yaaxi first made an appearance in 2011 and promotes all the environmental activities at the property. Other creative and innovative ideas are often integrated with CSR initiatives. Last year, a colorful Christmas Tree was created by colleagues from recycled plastic materials. And an Annual Recycling Contest is held each year to inspire creativity amongst employees. Contestants construct items from recycled materials that must have a practical usage in daily life.
For further information, please see Catalonia Riviera Maya and Yucatan Beach: www.cataloniacaribbean.com/en/
About Green Globe Certification
Green Globe is the worldwide sustainability system based on internationally accepted criteria for sustainable operation and management of travel and tourism businesses. Operating under a worldwide license, Green Globe is based in California, USA and is represented in over 83 countries. Green Globe is an Affiliate Member of the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO). For information, please visit www.greenglobe.com
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