Combining luxury and sustainability
TEXT: XANDRA BOERSMA | PHOTO: TODAYSBREW
288 hotel rooms, of which ten are suites and one is a luxury suite. That might not sound like the most nature-friendly hotel. But it is. QO Amsterdam was built in a completely new way – circular and sustainable. A truly unique way of eco travelling – the luxurious way.
When thinking of eco travelling, luxury is not the first word that comes to mind. Which is why the team at QO Amsterdam wanted to make a change. “Design and lifestyle go very well with sustainability,” general manager Inge van Weert explains. “It’s a new way of luxury: five-star service and top comfort.”
Towels are produced using GOTS-certified cotton, carpets are made of recycled fish nets, they bottle their own water and aim for zero waste. The building is specially designed to reduce environmental impact. The floor to ceiling windows, for instance, are a great example of this. “Because of these, 80 per cent of our light is natural daylight. And the walls are made out of recycled concrete derived from the old Shell tower in Amsterdam.”
After all, waste is not necessarily waste, as is QO’s motto. “It’s raw material that has great potential to be turned into something else,” Van Weert says. For instance, into a unique, luxurious, sustainable hotel with a wellbeing studio and the best possible guest experience.
But QO Amsterdam is not just a hotel. On top of the 21st floor is the Greenhouse. Here, the hotel grows its own edible flowers, cresses and herbs, to be used in the dishes served in the restaurant and the cocktail bar. “You see; this is not just a hotel. We wanted to include our neighbours as well. So we created Dutch eatery Persijn on the ground floor and kitchen Garden & Bar Juniper & Kin on the 21st floor. That way, everyone in Amsterdam can enjoy this new concept.”
And responses are overwhelming, according to Van Weert. “We’ve heard from hotel guests, as well as visitors of the restaurant and bar, that they find it a great place to stay, for work or to enjoy some time off. Which is exactly what we had hoped for. We want everyone to walk out with a smile on their face.”