Back to the commitments

Planet 21|2016-2020

Planet 21, enriching the AccorHotels brand

Virginie Sido, SVP Brand Culture, Engagement and Communication

Watch the interview of Virginie Sido
Virginie Sido

Arnaud Herrmann, VP Sustainable development

Watch the interview of Arnaud Herrmann
Arnaud Herrmann

Acting every day for Positive Hospitality

Because the environment
is the raw material
of tourism.

Our Group has been arguing the case for sustainable development since 1974, in a pioneering – but completely natural – approach. Hospitality is our business, and paying attention to our environment is a necessity.
Since then, we have constantly striven to push the codes.

Because every one of
our hotels is a world
in itself.

Small planets that welcome 500,000 guests every day. Providing them with water, energy and food. We strive to make these little worlds ever better models of excellence.
This is a requirement that we have been nurturing, since the very beginning, with some bold commitments:

  • 1994: 1st hotel business to establish an Environment department.
  • 2015: 1st group to approve a non-financial decision at an Annual General Meeting that commits it to planting 10 million trees by 2021.

Because there is an urgent need to go even further...

Today, the climate issue has become a concrete reality.
Our guests and employees are aware of the need to act, and they want to play a part in the changes that lie ahead.
Every day, new solutions emerge and new players shake up the established order.

Because as a player and
a leader in these changes,
we must set the example.

Yes, we are pioneers in our field. But we are also 190,000 passionate people, committed to providing a type of hospitality that is open to the world – proud to be different, able to surprise, innovate and inspire.

Drive the change towards
Positive Hospitality,
wherever we are

Today, we are giving fresh impetus to our commitment as we act to provide a positive hospitality experience; one that creates links and positive outcomes for all our guests, while striving relentlessly to reduce the impacts associated with our operations.

Because the hotel is the heart of our business, we have made it the focus of our “Acting Here” commitments.

Because our everyday lives are made ​​up of contact and interaction with all the men and women who live the hotel experience and make it possible, it is with and for them that we have chosen to act.
Our commitments:

  • be an inclusive company and ensure the welfare of our people
  • encourage our guests to act as multipliers of the positive effects of our actions.
  • establish a lasting relationship with our partners,, who share our commitments and are working with us to produce innovative solutions that have a positive impact
  • work hand-in-hand with local communities, because our commitment does not end at the hotel door.

Finally, because of the increasing pressure on the environment and in light of the Group’s development priorities, we have chosen to pay special attention to two specific issues as we approach 2020:

  • healthy and sustainable food, with a ban on food waste.
  • a move towards carbon-neutral buildings.

Almost 4,000 hotels worldwide and the same number of Positive Hospitality ambassadors.

Acting Here...
Acting here means acting
locally, at the level of the
small planet constituted
by each of our 3,900 hotels
across the globe.

Because they are the main players in our aim to achieve Positive Hospitality.
For years they have all been committed to making continuous progress on sustainable development.

An internal system to advance the performance of our hotels since 2011.
With the launch of Planet 21 in 2011, we created an action plan that offered our hotels 65 actions to promote sustainable development, tailored to the hotel context. This included a four-level rating system:

  • Bronze
  • Silver
  • Gold
  • Platinum

Each level marks the progress our hotels are making in implementing the program.


  • encourage each of them to go as far as possible,
  • help their guests to appreciate the importance of their sustainable development approach.

On our reservation website, for example, a pictogram identifies the hotels that have been certified as achieving Gold or Platinum status.

The results have been staggering and the progress made by our hotels outstanding. Given the scale of the success, it was clear that we should extend the system... as well as improve it.

An overhaul that helps us to raise our standards and adapt to local contexts.

We overhauled the system to reflect the new objectives of Planet 21 | 2016-2020.

    Our hotels now have a new roadmap to help us meet our commitments by 2020: Planet 21 in Action.
    It sets out 16 mandatory actions for achieving the new “Bronze” level, which must be obtained before moving on to the higher levels.
    The baseline has been raised to reflect our new ambitions.

    Planet 21 In Action, 16 mandatory actions for hotels

    People icon


    • Appoint a Planet 21 relay.
    • Teach employees to respect the Group’s values ​​and ethical rules.
    • Raise employee awareness of eco-friendly practice in their work.
    Guests icon


    • Default re-use of linen for stays longer than one night.
    • Offer at least two eco-friendly toiletries (shower gels, soaps, shampoos).
    • Display the key Planet 21 communication markers provided by the brand.
    • Use eco-label cleaning products
    Buildings icon


    • Measure and analyse water and energy consumption on a monthly basis. Act to address any malfunction.
    • Respect standard water flows for all showers, taps and toilets.
    • Ensure proper wastewater treatment.
    • Use energy-saving lamps.
    • Recycle hazardous waste.
    • Recycle two types of waste: paper, glass, cardboard or plastic.
    Food icon


    • Ban on endangered fish species.
    Communities icon


    Then, to go even further, each hotel selects other actions from over 60 initiatives. This flexible system enables it to build its own program in line with our Group’s commitments, but also reflecting the hotel’s local characteristics:

    • its prior level of progress on sustainable development,
    • its priority areas for improvement,
    • the environment and local issues...

    For each hotel, this is a guarantee of efficiency.

    To go further, examples of some initiatives:

    People icon


    • Set up an employee health, safety and welfare committee
    • Provide arrangements for co-planning work schedules
    • ...
    Guests icon


    • Provide eco-friendly sheets or duvet covers
    • Organize a guest awareness-raising campaign around PLANET 21 or SOLIDARITY
    • ...
    Buildings icon


    • Install metering and automatic sub-metering for water, energy and temperatures
    • Use environmentally-responsible products and methods for treating pool water
    • ...
    Food icon


    • Source local food products and / or products from short food supply chains
    • Establish an urban vegetable garden
    • ...
    Communities icon


    • Give away end-of-life hotel products for re-use or recycling
    • Support a local association
    • ...
    Partners icon


    • Follow the “Ethics & CSR checklist” for purchases made directly by the hotel
    • ...

    A weighting mechanism establishes the action achievement level with a score that places the hotel around the higher levels:

    • Silver
    • Gold
    • Platinum

    Our guests will soon be able to choose a hotel on with all the facts at their disposal. We will clearly display the Planet 21 level achieved by each of our hotels.

    A modernized management tool to make the changes successfully

    In 2005, we provided our hotels with an online tool to manage their sustainable development approach and monitor their water and energy consumption, along with their waste production. In 2016, our tool evolves and become Gaïa.

    More modern and user-friendly, the new version is designed to operate as a hub for all sustainable development issues, but also for technical services. This tool:

    • include the Planet 21 in Action roadmap
    • assist the hotels with implementing it by making it easier to share information and best practice.

    It will also enable our hotels to:

    • carry out self-assessment,
    • define their priority objectives,
    • create their action plan,
    • monitor their progress.

    For even greater efficiency, the tool will be shared with the technical teams, who can also use it to track maintenance work, manage energy performance and ensure the facilities comply with safety and environmental regulations, etc.

    Acting Here in practice

    Every year around World Earth Day on 22 April, our hotels clearly display their commitment to sustainable development.
    This is the Planet 21 Day.