Holiday Inn Cuts Costs with Guest Room Energy-Management Controls

Holiday Inn Cuts Costs with Guest Room Energy-Management Controls

By reducing the costs associated with heating and cooling unoccupied rooms, Holiday Inn and Suites in Madison will save more than $17,000 a year in energy costs. The savings are a result of a guest room energy management system installed in Holiday Inn and Suites 157 guestrooms.

Guest room energy management controls are relatively new to the United States. They have been adopted internationally in the past decade and are now being implemented here. In this
application, when the guest leaves the room, the controls send a signal to the thermostat that relaxes the HVAC system to a predetermined unoccupied set point. When the guests return, the system readjusts to meet guest comfort requirements. Guests control the temperature when they are in the room. In addition to managing heating and cooling, the controls also work with the master entry switch to activate lighting.

Holiday Inn and Suites partnered with Focus on Energy's Business Programs to implement the new energy efficient technology. The state’s energy efficiency and renewable energy initiative offered incentives that helped offset project costs.

The project came about when Wisco Hotels -- Madison Holiday Inn & Suite’s parent company -- vice president Todd Winkler visited the Entergize booth at the Wisconsin Innkeepers trade show. After discussing the property needs and the functions of the system, Entergize, a manufacturer of guest room energy management controls, agreed to provide a no-charge demonstration installation at the Madison Holiday Inn and Suites. The goal of the demonstration installation was to allow general manager David Phaneuf to verify the equipment’s performance.

"Energy costs represent a large operating expenditure in our industry," said Phaneuf. “By installing these controls, we were able to lower our hotel’s energy costs, positively impacting our operating profit margins. We are currently looking at guest room energy management controls at all Wisco properties.”

“Lodging facilities use energy to operate lights, swimming pools and business centers,” said Matthew Matenaer, an energy advisor with Focus on Energy. “When it comes down to it though,
40% to 80% of a hotel’s energy costs result from heating and cooling guest rooms. It’s an important cost control area that can be maintained by using guest room energy management controls.”

There are many other ways hotels and lodging facilities can save money and energy. These include installing energy efficient laundry water reclamation systems, HVAC system upgrades, daylight controls and switching to compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs).

More information about guest room energy management controls, other energy efficient products, and Focus on Energy’s Business Programs is available online.