The world’s honeybee population is in peril, and its long-term survival is definitely in question. Since 2006, American and European honeybee populations have declined dramatically due to a mysterious phenomenon that has been named “Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD)“. The cause is unknown and has given many environmental and agricultural authorities cause for concern.
In addition to many other environmentally responsible initiatives, a number of IHG properties have started on-site apiaries, where food and beverage staff have taken up beekeeping. The honey produced is used to provide our guests with delicious, locally made honey creations. This is one example of our commitment to creating Great Hotels Guest Love. Together, we can help save the bees!
Guest at participating hotels can enjoy not only the new Jack Daniel’s® summer cocktails but other signature cocktail and culinary delights touched with honey as well, created by the innovative food and beverage staff at each property.
As a guest, you can feel good about participating in a growing cause to save the world’s honeybees while preserving our environment. Organically harvested honey is one of life’s most healthful sweeteners, possessing a variety of benefits
InterContinental Boston’s Miel Brasserie was one of the first to install a rooftop apiary and appropriately so. Miel means “honey” in French, and many of its wonderful culinary concepts feature organically harvested honey taken right from the hotel’s own hive. Sous ChefCyrille Couet volunteered for the task of urban beekeeping duty, training with a local beekeeping expert to manage the 10,000 bees and rooftop hive. The hotel even boasts a flatscreen “Bee TV” where guests can witness watch the rooftop activity. More than 40 pounds of honey was harvested in the first month. As a member of IHG’s Culinary Commando Committee, Executive Chef Didier Montarou participates in efforts to support Bees Without Borders and other similar organizations involved in food sustainability.
The hotel has received numerous accolades and garners media attention for its positive activism on a regular basis. Below are some recent features highlighting the property’s achievements in beekeeping, food sustainability and other environmentally responsible initiatives.
When you think of a five-star hotel in New York City, beehives and herb and fruit gardens are probably not the first images that come to mind, but that’s exactly what the InterContinental New York Barclay has done.
Four colonies of honeybees arrived on the hotel’s 15th floor rooftop garden in June 2010. The “Barclay bees,” as they are affectionately known, play an important role in the pollination of the hotel garden, flying from rooftop treetops as far away as Central Park. The gentle bees produce honey
, that the hotel uses in a variety of ways, from culinary infusions at the Barclay Bar & Grill to candles for guest amenities.
The Barclay extends the use of one of its kitchens to NYC Beekeeping for honey harvesting and bottling in pursuit of the organization’s mission to foster a strong community of responsible urban beekeepers.
Watch The Bees Check-In with Executive Chef Serge Devesa
Recent coverage of the InterContinental New York Barclay’s beekeeping activities:
In May the InterContinental New York Times Square sent midtown Manhattan buzzing with the installation of its first rooftop beehive. Located on the hotel’s green rooftop, the hive is expected to produce 20-30 pounds of honey in 2012. Ça Va Brasserie will unveil new dishes and cocktails infused with honey from the rooftop apiary, and the hotel has plans to bottle the nectar for unique gifts and amenities.
Traveling apiculturist Zainal Khan commutes between Boston and New York to oversee the hive while training Chef Andrew Rubin in its day-to-day maintenance. Working with Khan,InterContinental New York Times Square will introduce an additional four hives to the roof by Summer 2013.
The new beehive is just one of many green initiatives put in place by the InterContinentalNew York Times Square, which is currently pending LEED-certification. Since its construction, the property has maintained a commitment to the environment in a number of ways including the use of energy efficient lighting, water conservation, and recycling programs throughout the property. The green rooftops, located on the second and seventh floors, will be cultivated to include not only the growing apiary but a fully-functioning herb garden providing fresh ingredients to Ça Va.
Recent media coverage about the InterContinental New York Times Square’s rooftop apiary: