How sustainability is gaining importance at SV Hotel - Interview with Marco Meier, Managing Director SV Hotel

The SV Group currently operates 20 hotels in Germany and Switzerland. Further hotels are to be added by 2025. This is an ambitious growth plan that also requires us to further develop and more comprehensively define our current understanding of ecological sustainability: While we as a hospitality company focused primarily on promoting sustainable food in the past decade, today we also want to find answers to sustainability challenges as a hotel group: Be it in the area of sustainability standards for buildings, their efficient operation or sustainable materials for interior design and equipment. Managing Director of SV Hotel, Marco Meier, told us in an interview in which direction the new understanding of sustainability will develop and where sustainability is already present in our hotels today.

Dübendorf 1, 1 May, 2024
Portrait von Marco Meier, Mitglied der Geschäftsleitung der SV Group

How long has SV Hotel been involved with sustainability?

As part of the SV Group, our pursuit of social and ecological sustainability is part of our tradition. Of course, this has evolved over the years. While our original founding purpose over a hundred years ago was based on social sustainability, the last decade has been dominated by ecological sustainability: the SV Group has made the offer in the restaurants more climate-friendly and healthier and has continuously improved the environmental balance along the entire value chain. In our Swiss hotels, the same sustainability requirements now apply to food and beverages as to staff restaurants and school canteens.

Stay KooooK Familienzimmer

In which direction will sustainability at SV Hotel move?

In future, we would like to take our sustainability strategy beyond the F&B area and are currently working on expanding our strategy for Switzerland and Germany. Among other things, this will include the sustainability standards of the buildings, their operation and the procurement of sustainable materials for the interior design.

As a franchisee of the Marriott Group, we have already gained a lot of experience with another sustainability program, as we are automatically included in the Serve 360 program with our Marriott hotels.

Although we are still in the early stages of developing our own strategy, we already have a great deal of expertise in the area of sustainability within the SV Group. I am therefore convinced that we will make rapid progress. 

Are there other measures in addition to F&B that are already contributing to the new understanding of sustainability?

Yes, of course there are. Our sustainability efforts don't just begin with the adoption of a strategy. In the case of hotels, these are projects that are planned for the next thirty years. Sustainability must therefore be a central aspect of planning for all new projects right from the start.

In our Stay KooooK and Hyatt Centric project in Hamburg, for example, the investor is replacing the existing building with a climate-neutral new building. The Stay KooooK in Bern also has an energy-efficient building. The building meets the Minergie standard. The key points of the Minergie standard are a well-insulated building shell, a highly efficient and renewable energy supply and controlled air renewal.

At our hotels in Switzerland, we have generally asked ourselves how we want to deal with the issue of energy. In 2017, we therefore decided that we would only use electricity from hydropower in all our hotels.

Incidentally, SV Hotel was already recognized in 2012 for the Courtyard by Marriott Zurich with the “Milestone - Excellence in Tourism” sustainability award in collaboration with “Myclimate”. Such a program was new and forward-looking at the time. Since then, a great deal has happened in terms of our understanding of sustainability. Today, we would therefore rather work to reduce our ecological footprint directly here than to compensate for it.

Stay KooooK The Flat

Is there an aspect of sustainability that is particularly important for the “Stay KooooK” brand that you developed yourself?

With Stay KooooK in particular, space and the use of space is certainly a key issue. As this is an extended-stay concept, guests' desire for living space is greater than for short-stay guests. However, space is an increasingly scarce commodity - especially in central locations. In other words, exactly where our Stay KooooKs are being built. For us, this means that we have to use the available space more efficiently and flexibly. More should take place in less space and guests should be offered the same level of comfort.

In Stay KooooK, we have therefore opted for a sharing concept for the communal living area. A common area with the character of a living room is available to all guests. There you can cook together or simply spend time in a cozy atmosphere. The individual studios, on the other hand, are very efficiently designed, but still offer everything a small apartment has to offer, including a kitchen and washing machine. To achieve this in the limited space available, we have developed a movable living element, “The Slide”, which allows guests to adapt the studio to their needs. The sliding module can be moved back and forth with a light pull of the lever, freeing up space for either the bed or a fully equipped kitchen.

Stay KooooK The Flat
Corporate Communications
SV Group

For further information