Green Company Profile: Irving House in Cambridge, Massachusetts
Irving House is a green guesthouse in Harvard Square in Cambridge, Massachusetts, just outside of Boston. Rachael Solem, Owner and General Manager, says that they have been environmentally friendly since opening 20 years ago, but in recent years they've become even more green. From solar panels to breakfasts featuring locally made food, Irving House is not only an inspiration, but a great place to stay if you're visiting Greater Boston!
Why it's Keen:
Eco-friendly travel options are very important. Hotels can sometimes be very wasteful, from those itty bitty shampoo bottles (and who knows if they are actually recycled!) to the food that they serve. It's refreshing to find green accommodations, especially in a popular travel destination such as Harvard Square. Just steps away from the Harvard campus, shopping, and delicious eateries, you can visit one of the coolest neighborhoods in the country while staying in accommodations that are kind to the Earth.
Harding House also has extremely good reviews across the Internet. It has 4 stars on Trip Advisor with plenty of comments from extremely happy people who have stayed there!
Why it's Green:
Irving House buys locally made breakfast and snack items, and some items are also fair trade and organic, such as their coffee.
Irving House also works hard at reducing waste. Their shampoos and soaps are in dispensers, instead of those tiny little bottles. Many of the items throughout the guesthouse are made from recyclable materials, such as cups, rugs, paper, and more. They also work hard to reuse things, like reupholstering furniture instead of throwing it out. Irving House also has a compost bin in the breakfast area and encourages guests to compost.
Energy efficiency is another plus. Irving House was awarded an Energy Star label in 2006 and their laundry facilities are also energy efficient. The staff at Irving House are trained to be energy and water efficient.
Since Irving House is in Harvard Square, guests don't need a car. Shopping, restaurants, and tourist attractions are just steps away and there are plenty of public transportation options. Boston's public transportation system (“The T”) has a station in Harvard Square, and you can get to pretty much any destination in the area without using a car. It's the perfect location to be green!
In the future:
Cambridge Inns is also working on improving the “greenness” of another one of its properties, the Harding House . Irving House is also in the beginning stages of participating in Clean the World , an organization that recycles soap from hotels and distributes them to places like homeless shelters and impoverished countries.
For more information on the Irving House, visit their website: http://www.cambridgeinns.com/irving/