Get the Team On Board for Your Eco-Friendly Spa Practices

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Eco-conscious spa professionals and wellness brands came together this May 3-4, 2023, for the successful GSN Planet Virtual Sustainability Summit. The meeting covered a wide range of topics, not the least of which was an informative panel covering sustainability best practices and solutions.

Related: Expert Tips for a Greener Spa

Moderated by Kate Morrison, director of wellness and sustainability at Ojai Valley Inn, the expert panel included:

  • Parisa Leve, The Breakers Palm Beach
  • Suzy Bordeaux-Johlfs, Silverado Resort
  • Susanna Sieff and Mirella Prandelli, Lefay Resorts
  • Jessica Swartley, The Spa at Spruce Peak

The panel discussed a number of important topics related to sustainability in spas and across an entire property, including how to approach new initiatives. 

When it comes to getting buy-in from the team and even higher-ups, eco-friendly initiatives can be tough to get off the ground. Bordeaux-Johlfs advised attendees to remember to offer support and resources to the team.

Related: 6 Ways to Green Your Spa, Big or Small

Any new program is easier to accomplish when you can get everyone on board, so Bordeaux-Johlfs emphasized the importance of acknowledging great work in meetings, having compassion and making everyone feel proud.

Swartley recommended looking outside the property. The Spa at Spruce Peak is located in Vermont, a notoriously eco-conscious state, so engagement happens organically. In this case, the property works alongside the community to keep the state green, participating in fun local events like Green Up Day, where they come up with prizes and other programming to make the event super fun.

Morrison reminded attendees that timing and tenacity are important. She said that, rather than taking no for an answer, spa managers should wait and then reintroduce their idea at another time or in a different way.

In addition, Morrison recommended starting small—for instance, Ojai Valley Inn first eliminated water bottles only at the spa—and demonstrating success in one department. This makes it much easier to expand an initiative property-wide. 

About GSN Planet: GSN Planet is a 501(c) 6 nonprofit trade association serving the spa industry in support of action for a sustainable future. Its mission is to promote the vital connections between personal well-being, economic sustainability and the health of our planet. Through networking, education and best practices developed with a membership of the nation’s most innovative green spas, GSN Planet is a resource for vital people building a vital planet. 

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