Istanbul goes green with proposals for green hotels .hurriyet2008-detailbox-newslink { font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size:13px; font-weight:bold; text-decoration:none; color:#000000;} .hurriyet2008-detailbox-newslink:hover { font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size:13px; font-weight:bold; text-decoration:underline; color:#990000;} ISTANBUL - Comfort, luxury, and cleanliness are no longer the only considerations for people when booking a hotel. People are taking measures to become environmentally friendly, and in this framework more people are choosing "green hotels" that implement environmentally friendly systems.

As host of the Fifth World Water Forum, Istanbul has kicked off the new year with environmental concerns at the forefront of its agenda. The Turkish Environmentally Friendly Forum and Bureau Veritas have teamed up with the Turkish Hotels and Investors Association, or TUROB, to launch the "green hotels" project - a project that aims to encourage hotels to employ environmentally friendly strategies.

The "green hotels" project held its first introductory meeting in Istanbul on Friday in preparation for 2010 when Istanbul will be European cultural capital.

In search of green hotels
"Among our guests for 2010 there will be many looking for ’green hotels’ that save water, energy and reduce solid waste; more and more people are prioritizing the environment over luxury," said Bureau Veritas representative, Gülcin Gökbulut, speaking to hotel representatives at the green hotels project meeting Friday.

In an open floor discussion at the meeting, hotel representatives and members of various environment-supporting foundations talked about measures currently taken by hotels in Istanbul and measures that are in progress to make hotels more environmentally friendly. These include customer signs encouraging recycling towels and sheets instead of changing them everyday, deactivating heating and cooling devices when windows or doors are open and the room is unoccupied, water-saving devices fitted into showers, toilets and basins and environmentally friendly cleaning products to be used throughout the hotel.