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Fundraising Contest for the Plastic Pollution Coalition

The Eco-Travelers Club is looking to raise awareness about the problem of Plastic Pollution from disposable hotel amenities.  There are 13,759,577 hotel rooms worldwide and counting, nearly all of which provide shower gel and shampoo amenities to their guests.  The traditional method of providing the shower liquids to guests is to package the liquid into little plastic bottles which are placed in the bathroom.   This is a big waste problem!  Every time a guest opens one of the bottles they are provided, no matter how much of the liquid is used, the bottle is now considered waste by the hotel.  On average the guests at hotels only use about 50% of body wash and even less of the shampoo and conditioner.  Occupancy of hotels on average is about 60%.  This means that if hotel guests only use 1 bottle of shampoo and 1 bottle of body wash during their stay then hotels worldwide will dispose of 6,026,694,726 plastic amenity bottles annually.  This figure does not include conditioner, hand soap, body lotion, or bar soap, many of which are popular items at hotels.

This cannot continue!

The Eco-Travelers Club is a small group of travelers who are dedicated to solving this problem.  Our company – Dispenser Amenities – provides a solution to the disposable plastic amenities disaster and we are asking you to lend your voice to the issue.  We are currently running a contest event on Facebook and for every entry we will donate $1 to the Plastic Pollution Coalition.  We are giving away 10 of our luxurious eco-friendly shower dispensers every month, and a grand prize of $500 cash!  Come join us at www.facebook.com/ecotravelers to enter our charity contest and help us raise awareness about this issue.


A New Look For Pinterest

By Michael Faulds

When I went to check my Pinterest page today I got a big surprise – the site has a new design!  Earlier this week co-founder Ben Silbermann announced that Pinterest would be re-designed, and now today is the day. 

The new look of Pinterest puts more focus on the Pinner’s profile once landing on their page.  When looking at a profile the first thing I notice is the giant banner that spreads across the whole page.  This is the user information that previously was displayed on the side bar.  A Pinner’s name is now the title feature on the page, with a brief description about them below.  Directly underneath the description there are small callouts for Facebook and Twitter (if the accounts have been linked to Pinterest), as well as the Pinner’s location.  To the left of the banner is the Pinner’s profile picture and to the right is the “repins from” window with links to other profiles the user has recently repinned.

I can’t help but notice the similarities of the new Pinterest board’s appearance to that of a Facebook photo album posted on the new Timeline.  Both show a featured large-sized picture with several thumb-sized pictures beneath.  Both the new Facebook and the new Pinterest are great in my book!  Corporate users can especially benefit from the new Pinterest look, because their brand name, picture, and mission are promoted more prominently on their profile page.  Displaying the “repins from” window in such a visible position also gives companies a better opportunity to obtain more followers for their entire profile, not just their individual boards.

So here’s my advice.  If you’re into marketing but not into Pinterest yet, get there!  All it takes is one user with a lot of followers to repin your post and it can go viral in a couple of minutes.  The best part of it is each copy (repin) of your original post will be linked back both to your Pinterest profile, and the website it was pinned from.  So make sure you Pin your pictures/videos from your website and not upload them.  If have uploaded a Pin you can still link it back to your website by clicking edit on the Pin and then pasting URL in the link window.  Happy pinning!

Come take a look at the Eco-Travelers Pinterest Page at http://pinterest.com/ecotravelers/


The HI Connect Design Trade Show March 21, 2012

Dispenser Amenities’ International Sales Manager, Warren Hodgson, will be attending the upcoming HI Connect Trade show at the Gaylord Opryland Resort & Convention Center, Nashville, Tennessee, on March 21, 2012.  Along with boasting attendance from a prestigious guest list that brings key decision makers and suppliers together, HI Connect will be unveiling its new ‘neighborhood’ floor space layout that transforms old fashioned booth presentations into model hotel room showcases.  When coming to see our presentation at this show, viewers will be stepping in to a virtual hotel room equipped with Dispenser Amenities products.  The show will also feature five sessions of presentations delivered by representatives from nearly every major hotel group, as well as catering and entertainment.   

Warren will debut a brand new Dispenser Amenities product at the show. The much anticipated AVIVA III Silver Satin with Basket will be previewed for all attending.  This luxurious Dispenser gives guests the convenience of three chambers to accommodate three different liquids, as well as two baskets for guests to place their own personal items.  Warren will also be presenting Dispenser Amenities’ WAVE aromatherapy products and the WindRiver Spa collection of products.

As well as unveiling the new Dispenser design and our own liquid products, Warren will proudly be partnering with Gilchrist & Soames to pair their “Bee Kind” liquid product line, with our WAVE Dispenser in the ADA (American Disabilities Act) Bathroom showcase.  He will also be presenting a separate bathroom featuring Gilchrist & Soames “Italian Bergamot” liquid with the AVIVA III Solid Satin Silver Dispenser.  Also being presented by Warren, our new H2O+ bath liquids – “Bath Aquatics” and “SPA” available to the Hotel industry exclusively through Dispenser Amenities.  These liquids are both available in bulk and manufactured by our newest partner H2O+.  Another partner that we are so pleased to be working with at the show is Ray Burger from Pineapple Hospitality.  He will be Presenting Pineapple’s own “Earth Perfect” liquids delivered with Dispenser Amenities WAVE Dispenser product.

All together Warren will be presenting 7 unique liquid lines in 7 different Dispenser configurations.  This show is a first of its kind, and we are truly excited to be a part of the new trend in tradeshows. We encourage all hoteliers to attend and participate.


Washed Up – A Creative Contribution to Plastic Pollution Reduction

By Michael Faulds

While browsing posts addressing plastic pollution on Pinterest.com I came across some artwork done by artist Alejandro Duran.  I was immediately taken in by the startling beauty this man has created from washed up garbage!  Duran is a photographer, filmmaker, poet and educator working currently at the International Center of Photography and The Museum of Modern Art.  With his latest project titled “Washed Up”, he has taken on the responsibility of demonstrating to the world, through art, the disastrous effects of plastic pollution.  His art is described as “color-based, site-specific sculptures that conflate the hand of man and nature, distributing the objects the way the waves would, like wind-scattered seed or roots tunneling through soil, echoing the organic forms of the surrounding landscape”. (http://www.washed-up-project.com) It delivers a meaningful message to which we should all pay attention.  I had the pleasure of speaking with Mr. Duran over the phone and he told me he found his inspiration when he “went to the beaches of Sian Ka’an, Mexico and was completely blown away by the amount of garbage that was littering a federally protected biosphere!”  He then, starting in 2010, began transforming what would be pollution in to inspirational sculptures. 

Duran is also founder of “The Digital Project”, an initiative to “improve education through the creative use of technology”. (http://www.thedigitalproject.com/)  This project added excitement and motivation to the learning process at several educational institutions.  They documented musician KRS ONE’s motivational speech at a talent show at East Side Community High School in New York City.  During his speech, KRS ONE told the youth “the more you validate, compliment and inspire your own friends, the more you create wealth and opportunity around you”. The project also collaborated on a program called “Think Globally, Act Locally” where Columbia University’s CEES went to the Secondary School for Journalism, New York City, for a unit which combined environmental knowledge with the teacher’s college reading and writing workshop.  These past works are so relevant because now Duran is demonstrating that the values taught to youth by his “Digital Project” can work for him in such an inspirational way with his “Washed Up” project. 

Duran is looking to sell some of his prints to make the project more sustainable and has a show coming up in June 2012 at Calumet Gallery, New York City as part of En Foco’s New Works Award.  The purchasing of this art is directly enabling the existence of projects like this one and the anti-plastic pollution movement, in general.

The disasters associated with plastic pollution are not limited to Mexico, they are occurring world-wide.  Upon entering the ocean, plastic pollution is utilizing a vehicle which will transport its ugly presence globally.  When iconic figures like Duran lend their talent to a worthy cause like eliminating plastic pollution, it helps others realize what is going on.  I encourage everyone to seek out and purchase art by Duran and support this project in any way possible.  Drawing attention to the problem is half the battle.  In this case Duran certainly demonstrates the phrase “a picture is worth a thousand words”. 


Truly Unique! The TRYP New York City Times Square South Hotel

By Michael Faulds

After having just returned from an eye-opening journey to the TRYP New York City South Times Square South Hotel Dispenser Amenities International Sales Manager Warren Hodgson had a lot to talk about:

“From the first minute you walk in the door you know this hotel is like no other.  At first glance, you notice a full wall of big screen TVs and think to yourself – “What’s this all about?”  Aside from being able to watch regular programming, these TVs serve a unique purpose.  When you check in at TRYP, you are given a password to TRYP’s own social network called “Lobby Friend”.  Similar to Twitter, users of this network can post messages from their profiles, but you have to be a guest or staff member to join this network.  When you post a message, it is routed directly to the televisions in the lobby.  Both other guests and staff may then respond to your message from their own profile.  If you need advice, want to send a message about a social event, have questions for the staff, or have anything else you want to communicate to the hotel’s community, all you need is your mobile device and “Lobby Friend”.

Once you begin the check-in process you are now faced with a choice; which type of luxurious room would you like:  The stylish standard sized TRYP room, a larger sized Premium room with enhanced amenities and a better view; the large sized Fitness room with all the perks of the Premium room plus an in-suite exercise machine and workout gear; or the Family room, with bunk beds and everything else you need for the whole family?  All the rooms are equipped with the latest security features including a laptop-sized safe, and radio frequency keycards. 

On the main floor of the hotel is the Gastro Bar that features various types of mouth-watering local drinks and cuisine including Warren’s favorite – the roasted brussel sprouts with pork belly and Brooklyn Lager to wash it down, as well as Spanish and International Tapas.  It has a modern look to it with a clear grand feeling of the New York City experience.

There is no way to talk about the TRYP New York Hotel without mentioning how beautiful the bathrooms are.  I have included a picture shown to the right.  These are some of the most amazing hotel guest bathrooms in the world!  I had to include this picture because the red tiling that matches the shower head gives the whole room such an inviting look and is highlighted beautifully by the AVIVA III Satin Silver Custom Dispenser.  Every one of the bathrooms in all of TRYP’s 173 rooms are outfitted with Dispenser Amenities products allowing the hotel to save 60,000 partly used soap bars with wrappers, 88,000 traditional disposable amenity shampoo bottles, and 66,000 ounces of unused liquids from becoming pollution had they chosen to go with a disposable bottle amenity program!  As well as saving the environment though their amenity choices, TRYP has also decided to finish their main lobby with wood that by vast majority was re-claimed.  They also use water-saving shower heads.

On Warren’s last day at the TRYP hotel, he asked a concierge named Cari if she could suggest something fun to do for his last few hours in New York.  She kindly referred him to a popular tourist attraction called the Highline, a historic elevated freight rail line that has been preserved by New York City. After arriving at the Highline, Warren enjoyed it so much that he used the “Lobby Friend” application to thank Cari and inform other guests about what a great attraction it was.  Some guests responded to Warren’s message with questions about the Highline.  He engaged them in a conversation about it and several of them ended up coming down to enjoy the site with him.

The TRYP’s expansion to New York City is an excellent addition to their already famous hotel chain.  New York is one of the world’s most visited places and a perfect spot for one of the prestigious TRYP hotels.  Here at Dispenser Amenities we are very proud to be a small part of this fabulous attraction!


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