Can your stay at a hotel help offset carbon emissions? A new luxury loyalty program is designed to do just that.
“Mission by SH,” an initiative by SH Hotels & Resorts, resembles other loyalty programs in many ways, with members earning rewards for spending money at hotel properties. However, in addition to getting access to tailored spa services or personal training sessions, this program allows you to direct your loyalty credits to efforts to offset carbon emissions around the planet. Guests can earn rewards worth as much as 4 percent of the money spent at the company’s luxury hotels, such as 1 Hotel South Beach and the Baccarat New York. The earned credits can then be used to fund forest preservation in the US, wind power projects in India and other environmental protection initiatives.
The eco-minded loyalty program is a collaboration between SH Hotels and CarbonClick, a company founded to help businesses and customers tackle climate change. In addition to funding various environmental projects, the program can even help you calculate your “flightprint,” the carbon emissions from your flight, before traveling. So you’ll have some sense for how much “offsetting” you’ll need to undertake to achieve carbon neutrality.
Originally pitched to returning guests by billionaire hotelier Barry Sternlicht, the loyalty program was piloted at the 1 Hotel South Beach in Florida at the end of last year. Now Sternlicht is planning to introduce the program to guests of the Baccarat, along with luxury properties in Brooklyn, West Hollywood and London. “We want to direct our guests to carbon neutrality,” says Arash Azarbarzin, chief executive officer of the company. “Or they can get a massage.”
Of course, SH Hotels isn’t first luxury hotel group to offer carbon credits to customers. Melia Hotels International, headquartered in Spain, announced plans to let loyalty members use points to pay for carbon offsets back in 2019. With any luck, carbon-offsetting loyalty programs will soon become standard rather than the exception.