Sustainability in the travel Industry - what it means to us.April 20, 2021
At Artists' Cottages we have sought to be environmentally conscious and to create a sustainable business model. In the first instance, we take19th century dwellings which were run down and in need of some loving care and attention, and turn them into dwellings for the 21st century. We use materials appropriate to the age and structure of the buildings. We put back features that have been removed, in particular working chimneys, essential for the well-being of such properties- 19th century buildings have to breathe - they require a constant circulation of air to prevent damp and to keep the occupants healthy. Log burning stoves clean the air by casing a constant circulation of air. (Something previous generations fully appreciated as essential for their wellbeing. The windows and doors have been manufactured locally to suit the style and age of the buildings so giving 21st century insulation and convenience. We have installed loft insulation, when we re-roofed so we don't waste energy. We were able to re-use a large proportion of the roofing slate. The joints and trusses all had to be replaced using timber from sustainable sources. Repairs and maintenance are carried out by local expert craftsmen who are used to working on these types of properties.
We have upcycled a lot of the furniture, giving some pieces a whole new look and a new lease of life. For example the dining table in Artists' Cottage was stripped of its high lacquer dark wood finish, considered out-dated, and then given a light coating of paint to give a contemporary grey look before being waxed. The chairs have been transformed to give a more contemporary feel as have the stools. The dining-table and chairs at Artists' House were given similar treatment before being painted in contemporary shades, waxed and in the case of the chairs, reupholstered. The dressing tables in Artists' Cottage were given a complete makeover and then painted to give a more bijou feel, as were the bedroom chairs. (shown in the photograph) In Artists' Place we left the antiques to do their own talking. In Artists' House we reconditioned the chests of drawers in the 2nd bedroom and turned an ugly early 19th century dressing table into a pretty chest of drawers in the master bedroom. The antique bedroom tables and chairs we left alone. In Artists' Corner we went all new with the bedroom furniture going for a more contemporary look in keeping with the bright sofas and upbeat kitchen. In Artists' Loft in the living area we used an antique table, which we completely reconditioned. We upcycled the chairs and, as we could not resist it, added a contemporary jade cabinet for the books and other items. Upstairs the furniture is all modern with an antique twist. All from local suppliers, and wherever possible local manufacturers.
The lighting in all our properties is LED and energy saving. We hope you like the effects of the different bulbs.
When choosing colours, we have used a similar palette for all the cottages. This cuts down on waste. It also means we achieve a level of similarity whilst ensuring each property remains unique.
We do not give guests individually packaged toiletries so as to avoid plastic waste, instead we purchase high quality products free of perfume and nasties so we can add carefully chosen essential oils. This also avoids waste. We do not supply conditioner because it harms the environment and causes mould.
Our philosophy when designing our interiors is to reuse, refurbish, upcycle and recycle wherever possible. When buying new to ensure quality so the item will last and be easy to repair. To look for sustainability in every aspect of what we do. We recognise the role our industry plays in the local as well as the national economy. So when equipment no longer meets our strict criteria we give it to charity shops or local charities. If it cannot be re-used we re-cycle. We are committed to using local suppliers and manufacturers, to working with local. crafts people and to employ local labour. We are committed to choosing electric goods carefully so that they comply with all the latest standards and are durable. We check that our fittings and fixtures, furnishings and furniture are as environmentally friendly as possible, but above all we are on a quest to ensure the comfort, safety and wellbeing of our guests so they can enjoy a truly unique and great experience.
Does this make us an environmentally sustainable friendly business?