The Eternal Journey

The Eternal Journey

ECOTEL??? Is it another eco-friendly Telephone??

I was recently reading the autobiography of Mr. Vittal Kamat, and the way the author described how he came out of all the turmoil to emerge victorious, touched my heart. I prescribe it as a must read for every budding and potential entrepreneur. However, the reason for citing Mr. Kamat here is just for the simple reason that he underwent all the troubles in his life just for the sake of fulfilling his dream of having a 5 star Ecotel in India. And the Orchid, Mumbai is born. After reading through the features and facilities of this hotel, i could not help myself but write this small piece here. Some of the details are directly taken from the website of Orchid Hotels.
The Orchid - An Ecotel Hotel in Mumbai is Asia's first certified eco-friendly five-star hotel and world's only Ecotel to be certified as ISO 14001. This 245 room hotel, strategically located adjacent to the domestic airport making it a convenient place for the business traveler to stay.
Everything is designed so as to be unobtrusive. Like The Club Privé room, an exclusive club floor with a private lounge and butler service. Or the well-appointed business and conference center to take care of your business needs in Mumbai.
The exclusivity of The Orchid is experienced as soon as one enters the atrium that is serenaded by a 70-foot indoor waterfall. Around the waterfall, on the first level is the Boulevard, the 24-hour coffee shop. The beautiful Orchids growing there give you a feel of the truly Orchid experience. Besides, The Boulevard provides a unique guaranteed time-bound service aptly called the "Lightening Menu" or the "10 Minute Menu". If the service is even a minute late, the meal is on the house!
In keeping with our Environmental commitment, every room is a 'green room'. The use of wood, paper and plastic is brought down to a bare minimum.
  • In house paper and plastic shopping bags have been replaced by cloth bags.
  • News-papers and laundry are delivered in cane baskets.
  • All closet hangers are made from pressed particle boards while the pens and pencils are made out of recycled cardboard, reprocessed plastic and scrap wood.
  • All stationary is either handmade or made from recycled paper.
  • Guests are provided with hand-crafted, rubber-soled reed slippers for use in the room.
  • Use of cut flowers has been totally eliminated from guest rooms and replaced with healthy potted plants.
  • Each room has a 'recycle bin' in addition to the waste bin, so that involved guests can deposit recyclable material for reuse.
  • The 'Eco-button' on the bed-side panel, is part of the guest participation programme


When a guest voluntarily presses this button, the thermostat of the room's air-conditioning unit is stepped up by 2 degrees Celsius. The resultant savings in electricity are translated into rupee terms by a central computer, displayed on the guest profile and folio and a certificate issued to the guest.
All the materials and systems used in constructing and running The Orchid are eco-friendly. The paints are non-hazardous. The construction material used in building the hotel is also eco friendly.
The Hotel has introduced the key card system wherein the lights and AC are activated only as the Guest's card is inserted into the Energy Saving Device. The system also ensures that the room automatically goes into the "power down" mode when the guest leaves. The Key card system has been introduced by many hotels later, in their attempts to reduce their power utility bills, however, Orchid still stands to be THE ONE.
The 63 international awards that the group and its owner have received, reiterate the efforts of The Orchid being a pioneer among the Eco-Friendly Hotels. India should be proud of having such benchmarking organizations and We, Indians should take it as our responsibility to promote such eco-friendly activities whenever and wherever possible. 
Long Live Mr. Kamat. Let The Orchid never droop.
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About Uday Sankar Yerramilli