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Technology Is Changing the Way Hotels Sustainably Manage Recreational Water

Many properties still rely heavily on human oversight and manual processes developed in the 1970s to maintain their pools, spas or other water features, resulting in excessive water use and energy bills.
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In the world of hospitality, guest satisfaction is (and always has been) of the utmost importance. Offering a top-tier swimming pool or water feature is a must for many hotels and resorts to drive occupancy and RevPar. In fact, investments into new aquatic facilities have never been greater. However, managing these core amenities is a well-known drain on resources, both in terms of energy consumption, water usage and the transport of dangerous chemicals. Fortunately, modern technology and smart software have emerged to help hospitality properties rethink how to operate in a more sustainable manner while offering peace of mind for staff and guests alike.

Traditionally, pools, spas and water features were maintained using manual processes developed in the 1970’s. In fact, you might be surprised to see many properties still rely heavily on human oversight and care. The impact? Today, many properties are excessively spending on energy bills with outdated circulation and filtration systems creating annual expenditure into the hundreds of thousands of dollars. Additionally, water usage is at an all-time high due to poor operating techniques (poorly managed backwashing), large leaks in the pools structure (experts suggest approximately 50% of commercial pools are leaking), and improper water chemistry (resulting in excessive drain and refills). All of these challenges impact the operating team and take time away from more proactive opportunities to improve the guest experience.

In the modern industry, however, operators and owners have increasingly embraced new smart technology and sensors to provide a unique and wonderful guest experience in a far more sustainable and cost-effective manner.

  1. Smart Sanitation

While automated chemical dosing has been around for many years, new advances in control and dispensing are driving significant savings in water and energy. New probe technology allows for true PPM (parts per million) chlorine readings—thus eliminating much of the historical overfeed of chemicals. Additionally, new onsite chlorination systems reduce the costs and emissions of chemicals, the reduction in plastics from containers no longer required and a safer environment for guests and employees.

  1. Leak Detection and Water Usage Benchmarking

Leading properties and portfolios now recognize the true costs of water and are implementing water metering and leak detection across all pool and spa fill lines. Leaks will not only increase water costs but can also create significant damage to the property (rooms, central areas, parking lots and more). Water metering can also be used to reduce overall water usage due to operating errors such as stuck water level valves and excessive backwashing of the filtration system. 

  1. Energy Monitoring

One of the primary benefits of modern pool technology is the significant reduction in energy consumption. While variable speed pumps and variable frequency drives are now common throughout many facilities, what is often missing is the required programming and monitoring to ensure the capital investments drive energy savings. Through implementation of these technologies, we have seen properties save tens of thousands of dollars per year.

  1. Remote Monitoring, Alerts and Insights

Modern aquatic technology allows property managers to monitor pool conditions from anywhere—even if they are offsite. Alerts can be set up to notify staff of any anomalies or potential issues, such as equipment malfunctions or changes in water quality. This proactive approach can prevent costly breakdowns and unexpected closures to ensure a seamless guest experience while saving money, energy and headaches.

Perhaps even more important are the insights delivered from such monitoring. Properties are now able to benchmark water safety, water usage and energy usage across properties and portfolios.

As the hospitality industry continues to evolve, properties that invest in modern pool technology and programming are positioned to stay ahead of the competition while increasing their sustainability footprint. These properties can focus on what truly matters: creating an unforgettable guest experience while doing so in a more sustainable and cost-effective manner.


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