InterContinental Hotels & Resorts Responsible Business Week runs from 17-23 September 2012
The theme for Responsible Business Week 2012 is inspired by National Geographic’s support of UNESCO’s World Heritage and sustainable tourism initiative ‘People Protecting Places’. During Responsible Business Week, InterContinental properties will look to emulate UNESCO’s mission to protect and preserve unique natural and cultural heritage sites close to their hotels.
This year marks the 40th anniversary of the World Heritage Convention during which special focus is placed on the links between World Heritage and sustainable development, and in particular the role played by local communities.
“Hotels play an important role in communities all around the world. We’re thrilled that InterContinental Hotels & Resorts is making such a commitment to looking after their local heritage sites via Responsible Business Week for the third year in a row, and we’re looking forward to working with the hotels in the conservation of a number of UNESCO’s World Heritage sites beyond this week,” says Kimberly Connaghan, V.P. National Geographic Global Media, Travel, and publisher of National Geographic Traveler magazine.
Several InterContinental hotels in South East Asia are participating in this initiative, and looking to preserve local cultural heritage sites in their communities. The InterContinental Bangkok, for example, will be helping with restoration work at the Historic City of Ayutthaya, a UNESCO World Heritage Site located 80 km from Bangkok.
As a result of the floods around Bangkok in late 2011, many of the temples in Ayutthaya were damaged, and restoration efforts have been underway. From 19-20 September 2012, staff members from the InterContinental Bangkok will be heading down to Ayutthaya to build a 1000 metre long tree-fence around the Wat Prasrisanpetch and Wat Rachaburana temples, and the Royal Palace. The fence, constructed using the tough and durable “Cha” trees, will help prevent flooding, while at the same time beautifying the area and benefitting the environment.
In Singapore, the InterContinental hotel, which is the city’s only Peranakan-inspired luxury hotel, is organising several activities to educate its staff members and guests about the Peranakan culture. During Responsible Business Week, the hotel’s staff canteen will be transformed into a “Peranakan Home”, and on the 21st, a Nonya Speaker will share stories about the rich history and culture of this South East Asian community with staff members over a traditional Peranakan lunch and dinner.
From 17-23 September 2012, The InterContinental Singapore will also be giving away complimentary passes to hotel guests interested to visit the Peranakan Museum.
In Vietnam, the InterContinental Danang Sun Peninsula Resort participated in the “Clean up the World” campaign. Held in partnership with the United Nations Environment Program, this annual campaign mobilizes and inspires communities around the world to clean up, fix up and conserve their environment. On 15 September 2012, 100 staff members from the hotel joined the local community in planting trees and cleaning up the area along the along the Han riverside in Danang city.
David Jerome, Senior Vice President of Corporate Responsibility, IHG says: “IHG understands that acting responsibly reinforces trust in our brands, builds competitive advantage and strengthens our corporate reputation whilst doing the right thing for our communities. And with hotels all over the world, we have a tremendous opportunity to make travel and tourism more responsible and successful".
Simon Scoot, Vice President Global Brands, InterContinental / IHG Global Resorts, says: “We know that our customers want to stay with brands that are responsible, and that is why we want to do things in a responsible way. One of the ways in which we demonstrate this is our long term partnership with National Geographic, and now UNESCO. Responsible Business Week is a special time when we come together as a brand to make a difference all over the World ".
In 2011, InterContinental Hotels & Resorts around the world dedicated more than 10,000 hours to Responsible Business Week activities aimed at preserving the communities where they operate. Activities ranged from cleaning local beaches and historical villages and monuments, restoration projects at national parks, to refreshing urban street walks.
Source = InterContinental Hotels & Resorts