Tuesday, June 28, 2011


The First Certification Granted by Green Concierge, a Program that Works to Green Tourism and Lodging Facilities throughout the Catskill Watershed Region

June 27, 2011Frost Valley YMCA, a 6,000 acre residential camping, environmental education, and conference center located in the heart of the Catskill Mountain Park is the first to complete the necessary training and assessment to receive Tier 1 – Bronze Certification from the Green Concierge (GC) Project.

Green Concierge, which is conceived of and administered by environmental consulting firm HospitalityGreen, has been working with Frost Valley since December 2010. During that time, 24 members of the Frost Valley staff have participated in an onsite Green Facility Training and the institution has implemented a number of major sustainable practices, including: replacing all light bulbs with energy efficient ones, recycling, composting, disposing of hazardous waste according to state regulations, using non-toxic cleaning products, upgrading sinks, showerheads and toilets to water-conserving models, purchasing recycled-content soft tissues, paper towels and office paper, and sourcing local produce whenever possible. HospitalityGreen’s online Resource Tracking Tool (The RTT) helps them track measurable environmental improvements and target opportunities for reducing costs.

Sustainable living has always been a core value for Frost Valley, and the organization continually strives to be conscientious caretakers of their facilities, natural resources, environment, community and each other. Tom Holsapple, Frost Valley’s Director of Operations, has led the participation in the Green Concierge program. “I’m thrilled at the advances we have made through the Green Concierge Project. Working with GC has formalized our sustainable efforts and presented an opportunity to refresh what was started years ago. Ultimately, it has changed the culture of our organization and our efforts will be passed along to the 40,000 people a year who come to use our facility. Seventy percent of those guests are kids, so we are creating a healthy and sustainable place and environmental awareness for the next generation.”

Evadne Giannini, Principal of HospitalityGreen LLC, says, “Frost Valley is the first of the more than 30 Green Concierge participants to receive certification. It couldn’t go to a more worthy organization. They have infiltrated sustainable practices into every aspect of their operation and really set the bar high for others to follow.”

The GC Certification process is structured in three tiers (Bronze, Silver and Gold) – with each tier providing a realistic benchmark and advancement to subsequent tiers dependent upon a business’ commitment, their ongoing use of the RTT to track resource use, and their dedication to increasingly rigorous sustainable practices. Frost Valley will be working towards receiving the silver certification in 2012.

The GC Certification was recently recognized and ranked by Greenlodge.org as a Silver Tier Program, placing it within an elite group of national and international third party certification programs.

In addition to the certification program, the Green Concierge Project, through funding from the Empire State Development (ESD) and the Catskill Watershed Corporation (CWC), provides free one-on-one technical assistance to over 150 tourism and lodging facilities in the Catskill Watershed Region to improve their operational economic and environmental sustainability practices.


HospitalityGreen LLC is a New York based consulting firm specializing in environmental and operations consulting services. HospitalityGreen partners with service-based and product-based clients throughout the hospitality, manufacturing and institutional healthcare industries, to implement sustainable business practices.

Established in 1901 as one of the nation's first summer camps, Frost Valley YMCA now provides four seasons of outdoor, experiential and educational opportunities. Frost Valley YMCA is a 6,000 acre residential camping, environmental education, and conference center located in the heart of the “forever wild” Catskill Mountain Preserve and serves over 40,000 visitors per year.

For more information on HospitalityGreen and the Green Concierge Project, visit www.hospitalitygreen.com or call (845) 436-6173.


Samantha Hoover, PR Director


Tel: (917) 337-2979

Email: s.hoover@hospitalitygreen.com

Website: www.hospitalitygreen.com

Denise Owens, Director of Marketing & Communications

Frost Valley YMCA

Tel: (845) 985-2291, ext. 211

Email: dowens@frostvalley.org

Website: www.frostvalley.org

Monday, June 20, 2011

Save the money, save the time, save the planet… staycation.

School is out and summer is here. It is about time for that well deserved vacation or just a weekend away. But where to? Florida? Bermuda? How about the Catskills? I know what you are saying, “how can you compare Bermuda to the Catskills?” But have you taken the time to explore this stunning getaway located less than a gas tank beyond your backyard?

Local vacations (also known as “staycations”) are a means of escaping the doldrums of daily living without having to leave your local area. Before the days of convenient and accessible airline travel, New York City residents would take the train into the countryside or down to the shore for a summer holiday. With the rising cost of gas, increasing airfare and shorter vacation periods, vacationing locally is returning as a steadily growing trend. Plus, it is much better for the environment and it gives us the opportunity to become more knowledgeable of the region we call home.

HospitalityGreen LLC is a consulting firm specializing in environmental and operations consulting services located in the heart of the Catskills. Over the past two years, HospitalityGreen has been working on the Green Concierge Project. Through funding from the Empire State Development (ESD) and the Catskill Watershed Corporation (CWC), the Green Concierge Project has enabled HospitalityGreen to provide free operational, economic and environmental assistance to over 150 tourism and lodging facilities throughout the Catskill Watershed Region.

Over the next few months, we here at HospitalityGreen will be providing you with some great tips and suggestions for “staycationing” in the Catskill region. Traveling back and forth to 150 of the regions facilities through the Green Concierge Project has given us a good idea of what the Catskills has to offer and we would love to pass on some of our favorite Catskill destinations, events, and activities to you. We hope that our tips will help you make the most out of this home not-so-far-away from home.

Interested in a staycation in the Catskills? Here are a few links to get you started:

Delaware County Chamber of Commerce

Greene County Chamber of Commerce

Schoharie County Chamber of Commerce

Sullivan County Visitor’s Association

Ulster County Alive!