Posts Tagged ‘LEED-NC’

First LEED Platinum Hotel in California

Thursday, January 20th, 2011

olive oil press sculptureWhile most people venture to Napa valley looking for the ultimate Zin or even the latest trendy eatery, others (like those who arrive in Teslas) like to plug in at the region’s Greenest spots. Although dubbed by many as the in new in, chic, trendy inn, the sustainably designed Bardessono (named for environmentally conscious Italian family who still own the land) might be better described as a way for travelers to get their eco-solace on.

The first and currently only LEED-Platinum hotel in California, the Bardessono will give overnight guests the opportunity to truly appreciate the reuse and repurposing of almost every substance rather than just the Green classification acronym. That reuse extends not only to creative use of building and structural materials but also the creative aesthetic touches like the reused Corona bottle glass that outlines the bathroom mirrors.

Although Green and minimalist, the Bardessono offers nods to its Italian roots and well as Zen like touches. Thoughtfully placed within view of several rooms, the olive oil press sculpture offers meditation inducing water (reused) flow to represent olive oil. Not only does the piece offer a pleasing sight and sounds but the fact that the entire piece comes via salvaged items like the stone that used to be part of an 100 year old olive oil press makes it even more attractive.

The fact that Bardessono considers water such an important aspect not only with the various Zen like pieces but the fact that they value the H2O as a precious resource. In addition to the ubiquitous low flow water fixtures and toilets for the indoors, the outdoors contains landscaping designed with native and drought tolerant plants as well as a drip irrigation system. Even the grey and black water gets a second life as irrigation by the town of Yountville.

For us super Greenies who felt somewhat guilty about relaxing in the indoor whirlpool bath or the rooftop based outdoor hot tub and pool, we felt somewhat better knowing that the both solar and geothermal wells go toward heating both the hot tubs and pool. Even the room tubs contain a self-sanitizing feature so chemicals don’t have to be used to clean to fight mildew.

Although many hipsters consider this boutique hotel a new, hip, minimalist trendy overnight option, many guests don’t realize how much sustainable creativity went towards the design. Although some eco-travelers do make a special trip to the Bardessono (like the many electric car owners who know that they can recharge their car or we who arrived in a Prius) many don’t fully appreciate the full environmental thought and how hotels like this one will raise not only the Green building bar but also everyone’s consciousness.

Those Green values and education will help anyone get good night sleep.

CCSF Joint Use Facility To Go Platinum LEED

Monday, June 21st, 2010

ccsf-joint-use_extWe thought that the whole college system was broke, so where the heck will the get the green to build this sustainability built joint use building on the rapidly improving CCSF campus? Maybe they will have giant vegan cookie sale over the next few years.

It’s not that we aren’t ecstatic to see the campus using sustainable deign practices be having architect Peter Pfau shoot for a LEED Platinum rating. Some of the sustainable elements will include natural ventilation, a green roof, radiant flooring, a geothermal central plant, abundant daylight, durable and easy to maintain materials, well designed shading for west-facing façade, and post consumer/green materials. Notice the lack of big-ticket items? Just because a building shoots for a LEED Platinum rating doesn’t mean that the budget needs to unsustainable.

When the new three story facility opens we’re sure that the students and facility will be give the building high marks for indoor air quality and the overall healthy study conditions.  It makes us want to go back to school.

Orchard Garden Hotel preview

Thursday, October 5th, 2006

luna-textiles

The Orchard Garden Hotel continues to experience a delayed opening. Yes, the soon to be LEED certified hotel originally scheduled to open in September now has a realistic November on its sights.

The delays didn’t detract from the evening where Mayor Gavin Newsom joked that instead of a ribbon cutting ceremony the evening offered more of a preview. Even, the General Manager Stefan Mühle joked that the crowd should grab paint brushes. Instead they grabbed champagne flutes, wine glasses, and appetizers (especially the sweet gazpacho) and got a mini tour of the five completed rooms.

While most people admired the coziness and sightlines of the rooms and suites, a couple of us focused on the green aspects such as the FSC certified maple wood furniture, low flow water fixtures, Luna Textiles and key card energy system. The rooms offer a clean, spartan yet cozy look. We weren’t exactly thrilled to see Chinese granite bathroom countertops but you can’t have everything green.

The Green That Brings the Buyers

Wednesday, September 27th, 2006
Bob Barker

With the opening pre-sales event of the LEED certified Arterra in San Francisco coming up on Sept. 30th we’re not exactly convinced that perspective buyers are placing their deposits because of the LEED certification or even the whole “Green Lifestyle” that the Arterra continues to promote.

Apparently, the sales office has pre-sales reservations booked for Saturday, Sunday and into Monday. That means green building gets a boost. Always good. But we have a sneaking suspicion (plus someone at the office told us) that the real green draw is the price point. A one-bedroom Mission Bay condo (without parking) for about $515,000 continues to draw buyers to this project like reality to television.

But who are we to judge why someone buys green? People who buy a piece of the Arterra because as Bob Barker says, “The Price is Right” may be doing the right thing for the wrong reason. But at least they are buying green.

Get the Lead Out

Monday, September 25th, 2006

Lead

Looking for some extra spending money to spruce up your house? Forget digging though the old sofas, just hit up Uncle Sam. If that sprucing up includes removing that nasty, not to mention dangerous, lead-based-paint from rental properties or one that you actually live in then it might be worth downloading and filling out some of the myriad forms on the HUD website.

HUD has made $39 million in funding available as part of their Lead Hazard Reduction Demonstration Grant Program.
Lead exposure can lead to reduced IQ, learning disabilities, reduced height, poorer hearing and a truckload of other health problems associated with children. But don’t dillydally as the closing date for this grant program is October 31, 2006.

Who’ll Stop the Rain?

Thursday, September 21st, 2006
Rainscreen

With the Arterra, San Francisco’s first LEED certified San Francisco condos, just about ready to go into pre-sales it’s no surprise that some visitors in the sales office appear from curious to confused.

Some prospective buyers who drifted around the sales office came for the Green factor but others don’t know green from pink. The salesroom doesn’t exactly push the green aspect. Those who don’t have an attention to detail could easily miss the bamboo kitchen floors, and the dual flush toilets. Even so, one green product continually baffles potential buyers – the Trespa rainscreen system. It more than baffles, it disturbs some.

We’re not exactly fans of bedding down in high-end coffins, except maybe during Halloween, so people here should get over their fears of something new. The rainscreen system isn’t exactly the new green kid on the block. Builders have been using this overcladding technology since the 1940’s in Scandinavia. (more…)

Where do we Sleep now?

Wednesday, September 13th, 2006

Orchard Garden Hotel

We can’t check in yet but we’re already giddy to sleep in one of the 86 rooms in the USA’s first LEED-NC certified hotel. San Francisco’s own Orchard Garden Hotel which represents the first in what will hopefully be a long line of green hotels will open in October. Green Roof Inns anyone?

Originally scheduled to open in July, then September, and now finally October, the hotel construction crew found itself at the mercy of two things that it couldn’t control.

1- The weather. The seemingly endless rain during in March and April caused numerous construction delays. Looks like they should have installed that rooftop garden sooner.

2- Ironically the second delay was due to PG&E permit issues. Funny how a Green Hotel can be delayed by a mega power company. That will teach you to stay attached to the grid. The hotel staff decided not to go with solar panels due to:

a) No space on the roof top to accommodate the panels
b) ROI not worth it – would take close to 30 years!

Fine reasons indeed but watch your PG&E bill.

One final note – The delayed Orchard Garden opening will cause West Coast Green guest speakers to bunk down at a backup option for the end of September conference. A tent in Golden Gate Park anyone?