Valamar procures 100 percent of its electricity from renewable sources. A great example of leadership, because being a leader also means pushing the whole system forward with your example.
And when it comes to the use of electricity from renewable sources, this is not news for Valamar, in fact, but only a continuation of the development policy because from the largest tourist company in Croatia, for the sixth year in a row are HEP ZelEn (HEP hydropower plant) certificates , this means that 100 percent of the electricity used in hotels and camps is provided from renewable sources.
Procurement of electricity from renewable sources and other energy efficiency and sustainability measures over the past few years have reduced total direct and indirect greenhouse gas emissions by more than 70 percent.
This year, Valamar successfully implemented a project aimed at increasing energy efficiency and ending the use of heating oil in the Corinthia Baška hotel complex on Krk, with a total value of as much as HRK 10,6 million, co-financed by the Ministry of Environmental Protection and Energy.
In Valamar, 96% of accommodation units have the ISO 14001 environmental management certificate, and six camps have been awarded the EU Ecolabel. “The implementation of a number of initiatives within the Green Valamar program aims to emphasize the importance of sustainable tourism development and care for the environment as an indispensable criterion for creating new value and long-term quality of the tourist offer.”They point out from Valamar.
Valamar's nine umbrella programs for corporate social responsibility
Valamar Riviera has developed nine umbrella corporate social responsibility programs, in which it invests minimally 2,5 place their annual income. In 2019, investments were made in these umbrella programs 5,8 place income, respectively HRK 129 million.
Zeleni Valamar is one of the nine umbrella programs of the company's socially responsible business, within which activities in the field of environmental protection are systematically carried out and in which almost HRK 100 million has been invested in the previous three years.
One of the most famous actions is certainly last year's Valamar initiative "1.000 Valamar trees", otherwise the largest green initiative of this type in Croatian tourism, in which Valamar plants at least a thousand new trees a year in its destinations along the Adriatic coast. This largest green initiative in Croatian tourism emphasizes the importance of sustainable tourism development
Thus, over 1000 trees have been planted and more than 50.000 different seedlings such as tall shrubs and perennials in 2019 in Valamar hotels, resorts and camps. The current plant fund of Valamar on a total area of 589 ha from Istria to Dubrovnik consists of 30.000 trees. Also, two years ago, Valamar completely eliminated plastic straws from use in its hotels and camps.
Although Valamar, in my opinion, does not "boast" enough about responsible business policy, because that is exactly what modern marketing does today. It is not about selling fog, but about the values they live by and according to which they act concretely. It is the concrete value, promise and strength of the brand. As concrete green steps within the company, to reduce their environmental impressions, as well as concrete actions aimed at improving the society and the destination in which they operate. Today, more than ever, ecology and green business are imperative, and that is what guests are looking for (they will ask for more) and will therefore choose the companies in which to stay. For a long time now, global brands no longer sell products, but emotions and experiences, including tourism.
Imagine that each of the 1000 newly planted trees is planted by the hotel guests themselves. Thus, the family spends one day outdoors, in nature and with joint efforts, and they specifically participate in this action. Each tree can be marked with "cardboard - ecological paper" with the family name and date. Thus, through a specific action, not like on social networks, each guest contributed to the protection of nature - with a specific action, he left a part of himself in the destination, spent quality time with a family he will never forget and will watch the tree grow every year. Phenomenal positioning on a conscious and unconscious level. It’s the power of emotion, it’s today’s modern marketing.
I would like to further emphasize the word through one personal anecdote - he spent quality time with his family.
By the way, I had my first contact with tourism at the age of 16,5 when I started working as an animator. As part of the afternoon animation program, there was always some sports activity for guests, ie families, one of which was water polo in the hotel pool for guests. Two small goals were placed on half of the pool on each side and the guests were divided into groups and water polo was played through the entertainment (animation water polo for entertainment purposes, not a real tournament). At the end of the "tournament" we awarded diplomas for all couples and handwritten the names of the teams or the family name as well as a symbolic prize for first place. Nothing special. But the following year, an elderly woman from Germany approaches me, thanks me, and shows me a picture of her husband sitting in his office. At first it was not clear to me why she was showing me a picture of her husband, but when she gave me a narrative or a story with the picture (the power of storytelling with a photo / example Rob Walker and his eBay story SignificantObjects ) I got chills and then discovered my philosophy of tourism (tourism is emotions, experience and stories). Namely, her husband was then one of the three best doctors in Germany, and in his office behind a desk on the wall he had hundreds of various professional diplomas, recognitions and certificates as a result of his work and business success. But in the middle of the wall, among all those accolades, he had framed our animation degree in water polo as well! !! !!
Namely, as his wife told me at the time, her husband worked constantly as a successful doctor in the hospital, he was never or very rarely at home, and he almost never had time to spend time with his family, especially with his children. And he also hadn’t been on annual leave with his family for years. Until that year, when they finally spent the summer in Croatia as families. It was this banal animated water polo tournament that afforded him quality time with his son. A moment that is more valuable to him than all the diplomas in his career. And that’s why he put it on his wall of pride, because it was that little animation degree that reminds him of the moment he spent with his son and family. That image and moment remained in my lasting memory and a reminder that gave me a sense of the animator’s future work. Wow that talks, right? And all thanks to one worthless animation degree. So this "cardboard" on every planted tree has a terrible value and message.
Well, back to Valamar. One of Valamar's ecological actions was cleaning the seabed - I love the Adriatic Sea. Imagine that guests who are otherwise engaged in diving, in cooperation with the diving club in action, emerge garbage from the sea and leave one object of garbage to themselves as an eternal reminder (souvenir) of the day. Garbage as such has no value, nor does a diploma, but when we add a narrative to it it becomes a valuable symbol.
Green Valamar is much more than a socially responsible business program. He is a value, business philosophy and currency that is increasingly sought after. Whatever they think about Valamar, they have the facts behind them, and that is that in 2019 alone, they invested 129 million kuna in CSR's umbrella programs.
Leadership in a burst, first by example, as it should be, not just on paper. An ad that "sells" such values is a new step forward and a step forward in promotion, not selling a hotel and a bed. Sell me a story (true story - emotions, experience), not a product. Well done to Valamar, take the road and show us the way. You have something to brag about and show off. The values that are an integral part of the business philosophy and that you live by.
Cover photo: Valamar