Jetwing Hotels, the largest resort brand in the island was recently honoured with the prestigious PATA (Pacific Asia Travel Association) Gold Award 2018 for the best corporate environmental programme titled ‘The Essence of Our Being’- focusing on the sustainability efforts undertaken at Jetwing Lake, Dambulla. This is a great testament to Jetwing’s commitment to the environment and community for over 45 years.
Long before sustainable tourism was recognized in the industry, Jetwing explored ways to minimize its effect upon the environment and maintain a close relationship with all stakeholders. Initially under the Eternal Earth Project, Jetwing focused on community outreach initiatives, sustainability, eco projects and humanitarian programmes. To sharpen its focus and accelerate efforts in key impact areas, Jetwing recently restructured its sustainability strategy with six key focus areas- energy and carbon, water and waste, biodiversity, community and culture, family and sourcing and production. The key focus areas contributed significantly to optimize decisions, investments and processes at Jetwing Lake.
Located 5km away from the Dambulla town, Jetwing Lake was designed from ground up to be as sustainable as possible, to match the local environment by maximizing natural ventilation and lighting, along with muted colours to complement the surroundings. Overlooking the Siyambalaweva water tank, the resort includes 78 deluxe rooms, 12 deluxe super rooms and 4 suites with private and spacious balconies allowing guests to experience the scenery of Dambulla in solitude.
Jetwing Lake hosts one of the largest solar installations in a Sri Lankan hotel. The 300kW installation features bifacial panels- the first commercial project in the country to do so – which generates electricity from both sides of the panel increasing yield by 15%. This enables the resort to generate more than 40% of the hotel’s daily electricity requirement. An onsite biomass boiler that utilizes on average 2,300kg of cinnamon wood per day generates steam to power a vapour absorption chiller which in turn provides 100% of the hotel’s air conditioning requirement.
In addition, no organic waste is taken outside the property – instead treated on-site to ensure 100% recycling and used as organic fertilizer for the hotel gardens. Waste water is also treated on-site, through an effluent treatment plant and reused to irrigate the gardens, as flushing water in cisterns and for cooling towers.
People are increasingly concerned about how food ultimately gets to their plates so at Jetwing Lake a 1 acre land organically grows a wide selection of regional fruits, vegetables and herbs free of herbicides or pesticides.
To avoid contributing to the prevalent plastic pollution crisis around the world, Jetwing Lake offers only reusable glass bottles for guests during their stay. The bottles are assembled at an onsite water purification plant in order to also reduce the emissions in transporting from source to end user.
Hiran Cooray, Chairman, Jetwing Hotels commenting on this recognition “Sustainability and maintaining the highest ethical standards is at the forefront of our operations and is a key value we encourage in our associates at all levels. From inception, Jetwing has been responsible in giving back to the communities in which we operate, ensuring our hotels have minimal environmental impact. To be recognized and winning the Gold Award speaks volumes about our efforts, and proves that we as a country and a company are on the right path.”
This year’s awards attracted 200 entries from 87 organisations and individuals worldwide. The winners were selected by an independent judging committee consisting of fourteen senior executives from the travel, tourism and hospitality sectors.
Family owned and in the tourism industry for the past 45 years, Jetwing Hotels has surpassed expectation at every aspect. Building on their foundation of being passionate, as well as the experience of true, traditional Sri Lankan hospitality, constantly pioneering discoveries captures the essence of the brand. Such a strong statement and direction have enabled Jetwing Hotels to imagine, create and manage marvels and masterpieces, where distinctive design and elegant comfort complement each other and the environment. In line with the Jetwing Hotels Sustainable Strategy, across all properties sustainable and responsible practices are given precedence with resource efficiency, community upliftment and education, and awareness being some of our key focus areas.