The 8th annual Hosts Global Forum was held in San Antonio, Texas and Hosts Global members together with 70 clients from around the world connected and learnt what’s new, what’s next, and what’s notable in the event industry. This event was held at Hotel Valencia Riverwalk San Antonio between the 7th and 10th of September, 2022.
Hosts Global chose San Antonio as its featured destination because of its vibrant and diverse culture and history. A city of constant transformation, bursting with new attractions, revitalized historic sites, and seasonal events. Hosts Texas took guests on a ride of culture, cuisine, and curated experiences that showed how San Antonio is thriving as a meeting & incentive destination.
Hosts Global thoughtfully and intentionally implemented multiple sustainability efforts for the Hosts Global Forum. Over 1,000 trees were planted and 164,100 kgs of carbon emissions were removed through investments into renewable energy projects. Another interesting, sustainable effort consisted of providing all guests with water bottles that tracked how guests impacted the environment through reuse by scanning a QR code every time they refilled their reusable water bottle. Each scan helped aid funding in developing clean water infrastructure, nutritious food programs, and reforestation projects that help communities in need. Hosts Texas also gave thoughtful consideration to the local sustainability efforts by selecting multiple venues, tours, and experiences that were within walking distance of the Hotel Valencia Riverwalk, the electric barges for transportation, and bikes for a tour of the city.
The education at the Hosts Global Forum focused on how strong partnerships are created through some very interesting guest speakers whilst panel discussions touched on a curated list of industry topics such as attendee engagement, sustainability efforts, hybrid meetings, and contracting.
Hosts Global Forum honour their DMC Members for their outstanding performance in numerous categories. The top Hosts DMCs were selected for all their hardwork, creativity, and dedication.
The award winners were as follows:
Fearless Full Service in Operational Expertise category – e2 Destination & Event Management and Hosts Las Vegas
Made Meaningful category – Empire Force Events
Ferocious Creativity in Event Design & Decor category – Spectra
Hosts Global Member of the Year – COTC
Event sustainability is one of the fastest-growing trends in the meetings industry, and for good reason. Us planners have a vital role to play in addressing some of the sustainability challenges we face as a planet. As younger, more climate-conscious delegates start attending our events, it may not be long before being a fully certified sustainable event is the only type of event to attend!
In light of this, when the pandemic first struck in March 2020, our top priority was to learn more about how we can start catering for eco-friendly and sustainable events. With the support of Global Green Events who mentored us along the way, we came up with concrete alternatives in which we can organise great events whilst keeping the ecological and social footprint of each project as low as possible, without affecting costs significantly.
This led us to commit to partnering up with sustainable suppliers during our events. But what does this actually mean in practice?
Eco-certified Hotels and Establishments
The eco-certification is a voluntary scheme managed by the Malta Tourism Authority which recognizes hotels that show a tangible commitment towards the environment. Eco-certified hotels must comply with a detailed set of criteria. There are seven five star hotels and nine four-star eco-certified hotels on the island, all of which we work very closely with. There are also other certifications of interest which include the Green Key which is a leading standard of excellence in the field of environmental responsibility and sustainable operation within the tourism industry as well as the iconic Blue Flag which is one of the world’s most recognised voluntary eco-labels awarded to beaches, marinas and sustainable boating tourism operators. All this information allows us to guide you and give you more insight when choosing your hotel.
When it comes to transport, there are many environmentally-friendly options which include escooters, tuk tuks, bicycles, electric vehicles and more. We also work closely with local transport giants Zarb Coaches, who have solar panels installed on their vehicles to generate green energy on the go!
Eco-friendly tours and activities
Here is where we got really creative! We compiled a long list of activities to suggest to our clients so as to make each event an unforgettable one, whilst leaving participants with that feel-good factor after each activity. Whether it involves a hands-on activity such as a beach clean up, learning a trade from local artisans or a senses experience such as wine tasting, our tours and activities are always very well received!
Our leading catering partners take pride in using the season’s finest local ingredients which are locally sourced where possible. They approach sustainability through operational practices which ensure the reduced consumption of water, energy, and material. Some initiatives they have in place include the use of fairtrade products, effective and efficient use of ingredients, reusable crockery, elimination of single-use plastic, energy saving equipment and the use of eco-friendly cleaning chemicals.
Sustainable merchandise and gifts
In our quest to try and reduce single-use plastic during our events, we have come up with an extensive list of re-usable, eco-friendly or biodegradable options to choose from – most of which can also be branded. We also partnered up with local artisans, merchandise as well as fashion designers, to offer a range of sustainable gifts whilst supporting small local business and the environment.
Two more restaurants awarded a MICHELIN STAR
The MICHELIN Guide Malta 2021 has just been released and two restaurants have been awarded a Michelin Star, bringing the total number of Michelin Starred restaurants to five.
The second edition of the guide features 31 restaurants spread across the islands of Malta and Gozo. The two new Stars are Bahia and ION – The Harbour. These restaurants join existing One Star restaurants De Mondion, Noni and Under Grain.
Five restaurants have also been identified as taking positive steps to work in a more sustainable way, and their entries in the Guide come with one-line descriptions of their inspiring practices. The restaurants highlighted for their ‘Initiatives’ are:
The Harbour Club in Valletta
Noni in Valletta
Briju in Gżira
De Mondion in Mdina
Tmun in Mġarr.
This new Guide builds on the success of last year’s first ever edition of the MICHELIN Guide to the islands of Malta and Gozo. There is no doubt that the standard of cooking on the islands continues to excite; five MICHELIN Starred restaurants out of a total of 31 restaurants is an impressive percentage. It’s also great to witness a growing awareness of positive sustainability practices and we look forward to seeing further development in the coming years.
Read the full article: https://guide.michelin.com/mt/en/article/features/the-michelin-guide-malta-is-out-todayImplementing Successful Sustainability
Here at COM all our team participated in a course about “Implementing Successful Sustainability”, by Gayle Murphy, CEO of Global Green Events Ltd, Sustainable Eats & Treats and Strategic Roots. This course enabled us to tap into her years of experience dealing with clients from governmental organisations, PCO’s, NGO’s and tour group and event organisers. Sustainability is a thriving new area of business, tourism, events and culture, with the benefits of implementation reaching far beyond the costs of outlay. We feel it is a must for all organisations, events and individuals wanting to step forward into a long term sustainable future and make its mark in the international playing field. When COVID has passed, sustainability is a USP that will accelerate our business into a leader in the tourism sector!
Talk to our specialised team about a myriad of Sustainable Event ideas that we have explored and tailor made for your next event.
Colours of Malta is committed to going green thereby assisting you in organizing a great event whilst helping our planet simultaneously.