The Days Inn Oceanfront Resort in Islamorada and Big Pine Fishing Lodge on Big Pine Key are the latest hotels to participate in the South Florida Water Management District's Water CHAMP program.
Water CHAMP is a public education program launched by the Southwest Florida district in 2002 that helps hotels and motels save water, improve energy efficiency and reduce operating costs.
The South Florida district is trying the program out in the Florida Keys first, with hotels that have fewer than 100 rooms and are not yet qualified for the more comprehensive Florida Green Lodging Program.
Participants implement reuse programs that encourage guests to use towels and linens more than once during their stay and install high-efficiency faucet aerators, provided by the district, in every guest room.
Each Water CHAMP hotel and motel receives an orientation briefing for property managers as well as training materials, linen reuse pillow cards, towel reuse door hangers and promotional materials for guests — all at no cost to the facility.
The Days Inn and Big Pine Fishing Lodge join a dozen hotels enrolled earlier: Bayside Inn, Key Largo; Chesapeake Beach Resort, Islamorada; Hampton Inn and Suites in Islamorada; Ocean Dawn Suites, Islamorada; Bay View Inn and Marina, Conch Key; Conch Key Cottages, Conch Key; 1800 Atlantic Condominiums, Key West; Coconut Mallory Resort, Key West; Hyatt Beach House Resort, Key West; Hyatt Windward Pointe Resort, Key West; Hyatt Sunset Harbor Resort, Key West and The Palms Hotel, Key West. The district estimates that each of the 634 rooms in the enrolled hotels and motels could save an estimated 21 to 23 gallons of water per occupied night.
Lodging facilities in the Florida Keys with fewer than 100 rooms that are not yet qualified for the more comprehensive Florida Green Lodging Program may sign up for Water CHAMP by contacting Tom Genovese, SFWMD Florida Keys Service Center director, at email@example.com or (305) 453-1275.