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France launches first zero single-use plastic hotel

The Best Western Opéra Liège in Paris has become the first zero single-use plastic hotel in France. The hotel has worked with Racing For The Oceans, a start-up which helps companies “move from a single-use plastic consumer role to a zero waste ambassador.”

Together, they have replaced all plastic packaging in the hotel with sustainable alternatives.

The hotel’s 50 rooms and suites will no longer feature any single-use plastic, starting with the wooden keycards used to access the rooms. Eco-friendly amenities include laundry bags, slippers, binbags made from bamboo and plastic-free minibar products. The biodegradable coffee capsules were a big win for the Best Western Opéra Liège as they are compatible with their Nespresso machines.

Bathrooms will also undergo a sustainable makeover. Rather than having three separate bottles for shampoo, conditioner and shower gel, the hotel will now provide a three-in-one solid soap-like bar. Guests will also be supplied with a bamboo toothbrush and toothpaste in a lozenge form.

The hotel will install water fountains to refill the glass bottles provided in the rooms, and the bar and breakfast room will no longer serve products packaged in plastic. The project will see the hotel eliminate over 24,000 plastic bottles, 55,000 cosmetics packaging and 16,000 plastic bags a year.

Marine Pescot, co-founder of Racing For The Oceans, spoke to Business Traveller online about the project. “We are definitely looking to work with other hotels and to develop a bigger portfolio of zerowaste suppliers… Our objective is to work with bigger groups and advise them on what suppliers they can work with.”

In January, France banned singleuse plates, cups and cotton buds from being sold in bulk as part of its goal to phase out all single-use plastics by 2040. Over the next two years, the country will also ban objects such as plastic straws, disposable cutlery, plastic tea bags, and the provision of free plastic bottles.

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