Fujairah Collage

Fujairah Collage
Some distinctive landmarks in Fujairah

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Iberotel Miramar at Al Aqah Fujairah Achieves High Environmental Standards

Global Recognition
A media conference on Tuesday (14 December 2010) became an award ceremony and a celebration of the Iberotel Miramar Al Aqah Beach Resort achieving international recognition for its compliance with the highest environmental standards.

In gaining the Green Globe award the Iberotel Miramar at Fujairah’s Al Aqah beach became the first hotel on the UAE’s East Coast to receive this recognition and the first beach resort in the Emirates to gain this certification.

Receiving the certification on behalf of Iberotel Miramar, the Area General Manager of Iberotel Hotels and Resorts, Mr. Ashraf Helmy said:

“We have worked on this Green Globe Certification from the opening of the Miramar and to build and grow our hotel so it is in agreement with nature.”

Right Time?
Ashraf Helmy, who is also the Business Development Manager of Iberotel Hotels and Resorts, mentioned that the Miramar Green Globe Certification process took place during the global recession. He said that while on the surface this may not appear to have been a good step, in the long run achieving environmental compliance actually brings more savings than creating a great expense.

Ultimate Motivation
As he thanked the media and municipality representatives for their interest and attendance he shared his ultimate motivation:

“We have not taken these environmental actions to get certified but we have done it for the environment, for nature and for the wellbeing of our great, great grandchildren.”

What is Green Globe Certification?
Mr. Ramakrishna Bhadhya, a consultant with Avireal Middle East and the representive of Green Globe, congratulated Miramar and commended the manager on taking the initiative to getting certified.

He said:

“We appreciate this. Most of the time many hotels are taking sustainable initiatives but they do not seek certification.”

Environmental Audit
The Green Globe certification offers to businesses and hotels a step-by-step process. The certification gives objectivity and the weight of an external authority as it declares to the public that certain environmental standards have been attained.

It sends a signal of environment soundness in the same way that an audited statement beams the message of financial propriety.

Criteria Compliance
The Green Globe standard criteria cover the following areas:
+ Sustainable Management
+ Social and Economic
+ Cultural Heritage
+ Environmental

There are currently a total of 339 criteria and the hotel or any other facility has to comply with all the mandatory criteria and at least 51% of the applicable criteria to get certified. The applicable criteria may vary depending on the facility/hotel/business that is being certified. Mr. Ramakrishna explained that the Green Globe Certification is a global recognition of a building or a company’s commitment to the environment and sustainable living.

He said that the initiative was sparked in 1992 at a summit on green activities and the Green Globe certification process was established in 1993. It commenced in the Middle East two years ago and already there are 1,000 properties globally that have this certification.

Consultants and Volunteers
Asraf Helmy emphasized that the award was a result of teaming up with the Dibba Municipality and he stressed the important of government assistance.

He paid tribute to the contribution of Lukas Eigenmann of Farnek Services who had served as a valuable consultant throughout the process.

Later on a tour of the beach resort Helmy spoke of the vital role that his staff played in this exercise. They formed themselves into a group to work at compliance with environmental standards. Led by the Security Officer, Joshua, they came up with all sorts of innovative ideas and their service was completely voluntary.

Certainly it was evident that the General Manager had been the visionary, the driving force and the one who made this entire process happen.

No Resting on Laurels
Asraf Helmy indicated that the award was a first rather than a final step:

“We hope this is a first step with Miramar becoming the first hotel on the UAE’s East Coast to receive this recognition and the first beach resort in the Emirates to gain this certification.”

Regular audits must take place to maintain the international Green Globe rating so far from seeing the certification and award as the end, Ashraf Helmy sees this as the beginning of a new process for his hotel and he is keen to explore ways that Miramar might contribute further to the Fujairah environment.

Take a Look
Some pictures of the Iberotel Miramar Al Aqah Beach Resort in Fujairah, many of which illustrate the desire of the hotel resort to live in harmony with nature, are posted in this photo album.

Some pictures of the Green Globe Award ceremony are in this photo album.

Iberotel Miramar Al Aqah Receives Prestigious Green Globe Award, FIF, 14 December 2010.

P O Box 5218
Al Aqah
Tel: +971 9 2449 994
Fax: +971 9 2449 995
Email: info@iberotel.ae
Web Site for Iberotel Miramar Al Aqah

Geoff Pound

This article is also posted on the Fujairah in Focus Facebook Page.

Image: The Iberotel Miramar is well nestled into its environment as it is situated between the Hajar Mountains and the Arabian Sea.

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