The Savoy Hotel on the corner of Inya road and Dhammazedi was established in 1995 and is considered one of Yangon’s most beautiful heritage boutique hotels. The lush green oasis pool area is a splendid spot to find some peace and shade and escape the Yangon sun, and their recently refurbished Captains bar is a favourite haunt of Yangonites looking for a place to conduct business or somewhere to just relax and unwind over a cocktail, they do a mean burger too. However, despite their fabulous luxury offerings, it is their innovative, progressive and thoughtful approach to environmental sustainability over the past 12-months that has been the most impressive. As the growth and interest in a more environmentally friendly approach to business is becoming more important globally, the efforts of the Savoy Hotel stand out in Myanmar. Their significant contribution to the Yangon ‘green movement’ is very evident, and the presentation of the second ever Myanmore Green Ambassador award is recognition of that effort.

Nourish Cafe, the first ever winner of this award, can hand the baton on in the knowledge that it is in safe and reliable hands. The Savoy Hotel has shown a dedication to reducing the carbon footprint of their business and that of their staff and customers, and the number of ticks that they could receive in a checklist of sustainable practices is admirable, and that is down to the commitment of General Manager Tim Reus who has prioritised their green agenda.

From being a member of the “Straws Suck” campaign to teaming up with RecyGlo the recycling and waste management organisation. From joining the “refill not landfill” initiative reducing the number of plastic bottles their customers use, to donating their old linens to local schools in order to recycle them into school uniforms. There isn’t an element of the business that hasn’t been assessed and addressed with regards to its environmental impact. Their dedication to using locally sourced products and ingredients, and the resident ducks that are employed in organic and pesticide free insect reduction make all the difference.

Their efforts are not limited to business decisions either, the Savoy Hotel provides training and information to all their staff to encourage them to be mindful of their own impact on the environment, and all guests are invited to embrace this approach and to ensure that they don’t negatively impact on Myanmar during their time here.

Congratulations to Tim and all at the Savoy Hotel for becoming the 2019 Myanmore Green Ambassadors, we look forward to seeing the implementation of the green projects you have lined up for this year.

Notable mention and congratulations should be made to the other nominated businesses that have promoted a green approach throughout the last year. Arakan Lodge in Rakhine state is entirely powered through solar energy, they have environmentally friendly composting latrines, even the guest houses are built from recycled old traditional Rakhine houses. Sprouts, who also received an honourable mention last year have continued in their quest to reduce the environmental impact of their cafes. From the use of eco-friendly packaging for takeaway items, to significantly reducing the disposable packaging of their suppliers, they have made great strides in implementing a greener approach to business. They have also begun the process of establishing an exciting farm-to-table concept restaurant in Yangon that will have an on site organic farm to supply most of their vegetables with herbs and spices grown using aquaponics. Good luck, and we look forward to hearing more about this amazing restaurant concept in the coming year.

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