Rye Hotel is environmentally friendly

In 2017, Rye Hotel was honored for significant community leadership in its management of energy use and waste consumption, when it received the inaugural Best Environmental Initiative Award from the Australian Hospitality Association (AHA).

Lifelong local resident Peter Houghton, a fourth-generation hotelier whose family have owned the Rye Hotel as far back as 1954, described the award and the response to his teams’ enthusiasm for environmental issues as “pretty fantastic given the general apathy of many for green initiatives”.

“As part of our major redevelopment to the buildings over the last several years, we wanted to maximize the utility of guests’ enjoyment of the natural environs, and especially the view across the foreshore.  That started me down a path of thought, about how we impact that heritage, and vis-à-vis our preservation of it.  So, an alarm bell went off, and I had a ‘sunshine moment’ – let’s go fully solar!”

Peter then went down a pathway to investigate the best options and found a great initiative in the Sustainable Melbourne Fund.  Twelve months later, the Rye Hotel had installed over three hundred solar panels to its large complex of buildings and embarked on a larger-scale program of sustainability initiatives, which includes provision and promotion of electric car re-charging facilities.

View our video award entry

Rye Hotel is proudly part of the Peninsula’s Last Straw campaign.  Every year, millions of plastic straws are washed into our rivers, bays and oceans.  Plastic straws and other single-use plastics threaten marine animals and spoil the amenity of our public spaces.

Peninsula's Last Straw is a volunteer-based community initiative, initially conceived through a Tangaroa Blue resource reduction workshop.  Seed funding from the Victoria Government's Port Phillip Bay Fund supplied the campaign with paper straws for 9 Dromana stores.  The Keep Victoria Beautiful Gift Fund has further enabled the initiative to expand into Rye, Mount Martha and Mornington.

Rye Hotels’ aim is ultimately on ‘carbon neutrality’ and implementing strategies which promote a company culture of reducing waste and energy consumption, such as seen in LED globe replacement programme throughout the venue.

Rye Hotel engaged experienced waste recycling experts to conduct a site audit which resulted in the following initiatives:

  1. All kitchen oils are re-used for bio diesel use or similar recycling applications
  2. Ceased using single-use containers in the kitchen and replaced with reusable’s
  3. Recycling of all plastic packaging in designated areas of the hotel
  4. Cardboard and plastics recycling by way of an industrial waste compactor
  5. Scrap metal, plastic, glass returned to suppliers or recyclers
  6. Shift towards online communications and member promotions
  7. All glass bottles are recycled throughout the venue
  8. Virtually paperless accommodation reception
  9. Patrons need to ask for plastic bags, not automatically given one
  10. Use of low-maintenance native plants with watering systems timers
  11. Reduced pool heating costs by installing solar heating and pool cover