Profile Article for Travel Magazine: A sustainable tourism hospitality business in Australia

Ecotourism or Sustainable tourism is often touted as the right way to enjoy the holidays, but you ten people are asked about what ecotourism is, then most likely we will get different as well as interesting responses. Despite the well-known belief, ecotourism is much more than jumping on the jet to safeguard the forests. It doesn’t imply that sustainable tourism spots are dull. Hospitality is one of the rapidly growing service industry. 

picture promoting sustainable tourism hospitality business in Australia

Michaela Reitterer, who is the owner and manager of Vienna's Hotel Stadthalle indicated that sustainable hospitality industry is expanding at the faster rate of 5% annually, and in the coming time, job relying on the tourism will be around 14% of the total global workforce. Due to tourism as the international business, it will open towards many new changes as well as improvements around the national borders. Humans are the wanders required to be safe and feel free wherever they go. Therefore, hotels play a significant role in the traveling experience of people. With the thriving tourism, communication between the customers and service-workers has become quite frequent. The quality of service is also considered increasingly crucial. In the no time, tourism has become the most popular connected industry and is also very competitive. 

Hotel Landgut Borsig, located in Nauen, which is 40 km far away from Berlin, customers get the opportunity to sleep at the luxury mattresses, relax in the sauna, eat the gourmet foods made from the local ingredients, and attend the bread making classes. But the room has no mini-bars. That’s because the hotel is a zero-carbon hotel. This implies, that hotel produces their energy, and more energy whenever they require. The hotel has purchased the nearby forest because it helps in absorbing all the emissions. The hotel is also planting more trees so that they can make the hotel surrounding CO2-neutral. 

Hotel Landgut Borsig

Hotel Landgut Borsig

Zero carbon hotels have come up as a significant trend in the last ten years as mentioned by Willy Legrand, who work at the International University of Applied Sciences. As many plus-carbon hotels sell the surplus too many others. As per Legrand, the critical reason behind the skyrocketing cost of energy in various countries of the world is the high price of hotels. In one of the surveys initiated by Legrand, there are 74% of the hotels, who has reported to invest in saving energy by minimizing the costs. Many hotels have explored sustainability as the main point of selling years ago. Various display signs are placed in a hotel bathroom, which invites the customers to support in preserving the environment, through using their towels for more than one time.

Just like Stadthalle, which is a boutique hotel is driving towards new zero-carbon, and towards the trend of super-sustainability. Among different standard offerings, like towels, organic bedsheets, which only make use of rain water, and other food items with the labels, try to trace the ingredients available in particular fields.  Just like Landgut Borsig, there are variously featured mattresses, which are made from the help of natural ingredients like house chair, coco fibre, and natural rubber. The hotel also supplies as well as purify their water. They also make use of solar panels, thermal heat, solar cells, as well as provide less portion so that they can minimize wastage of food, reported by Tornroth, working as Sales director at zero-carbon Sanga-Saby hotel of Sweden. The hotel also equipoises customers and staff with CO2 emissions. Due to the traditional banks, which are quite reluctant in giving the loans for the business, are viewed as granola instead of the profit machine. In place of this sustainability, banks have come up in the market. Triodos Bank, located in the Netherlands has come up as the new market leader in providing super-sustainability hotels. The Hotel Saunders Group, which is a zero-carbon hotel located in US east coast have mentioned that millions on energy and various other initiatives such as waterless urinals are proposed. 

Future CO2 Emissions through International Tourism: Mitigation Potential Scenario in 2035

(Source: World Tourism Organization & Cabrini, 2009)

Sanga-Saby last year has viewed that, 1.6% of the revenue has increased; similarly Swedish Hotel mention, there is not enough consciousness about environment nowadays. The hotel mentions that global customers who mainly visit the hotel come due to hotel profile. It is true that everything can be made possible in the way of challenging sustainability.

(Source: Responsible Tourism, 2018)

Most government bodies initiate the expansion of tourism in context to countries with an aim to assist in developing the economy. Hall (1995) has stated the reason why the government, especially the one in developing nations initiate the investment in the tourism sector, and it’s done with expectations that tourism industry will contribute in the development of the economy. It is also argued that the tourism industry seems like the way of progress in huge terms. 

Indirect, direct and induced Contribution of hospitality and tourism industry

 (Source: Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association, 2011)

Scholars have also stated that development should not only refer the economy, but it should also try to encompass environmental, economic, social and ethical considerations like its measurements might incorporate the poverty indicators, inequality, unemployment, as well as self-reliance. Authors have also mentioned that there exists a cumulative relationship among the development of tourism, socio-economic and environmental development. This implies that if tourism try, to contribute to the development of sustainability, then it should be viable economically, culturally relevant, and ecologically sensitive. This recommends that the initiative taken by the economy like tourism should rely on the idea that development in the economy should try to conform to the sustainable development concept. 

Ceballos-Lascurain had mentioned that eco-tourism is considered as the tourism type, which promotes the conservation, offers advantageous active socio-economic participation of domestic populations, promotes low visitor effect, and also initiate awareness of visitors in the preservation of the environment. Eco-tourism and green tourism emphasize the requirement to encourage at worst or symbiotic relationship among environment conservation and tourism. 

At the macro-economic level, the tourism expansion in Delta and various other regions of Northern Botswana, like Chobe Region was explored to have risen in the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of the country. At 1996, after Botswana independence, the contribution of tourism in the GDP was not so much, because the tourism sector was not developed until that time. Nevertheless, the tourism sector development in the past two decades has made the region as the second largest revenue contributor to the government and has also contributed to GDP. For instance, between the year 1996-1997, the tourism sector has added approximately P800 million in the country GDP, which shows 45% of the total GDP in 1996-1997. Revenue which accrues to the government through the development of tourism sector includes taxes (sales and license taxes), import duties, and license fees. 

The Okavango Delta tourism sector is the one, which is overseas owned predominately; therefore, it can be explained as internal colonialism or enclave tourism. There are many environmental and socio-economic issues related to enclave tourism. It includes the high tendency through operators with an aim to increase the profit in a short time, even at the cost of environment. Nevertheless, once resources start getting depleted, then tour operators, as well as tourist, try to relocate at some other place, where the tourism industry is at boom and cycles begin again. Therefore, ecological sustainability becomes important in ignoring the adverse effects on the environment through tourism in places like the Okavango Delta.

Sinclair and Jayawardena emphasized the views of visitors over the development of sustainable tourism because it links with the Pitons UNESCO World Heritage Site, located at St. Lucia. The scholar has explored that visitors associated with the development of sustainable tourism by purchasing the local products; therefore, minimizing the leakages. They also mention that tourist is often inclined towards donating the initiatives for local conservation if they understand this area. In a note to this, visitors are hugely not aware of the Piton Mountains, which is the UNESCO status place.

(Source: UNWTO Tourism Highlights, 2013)

Sinclair and Jayawardena (2003) have explored that development of sustainable development in the Guianas that is trying to increase tourism by providing the high inventory based on cultural heritage and biodiversity. The authors also explored that the highly comprehensive plan of legislation is required to manage the use of land, the participation of the community, and indicators as are necessary for compliance measuring. The authors also explored that capabilities of the entrepreneur should be examined on the basis of the village, along with research for initiating capacity. 

In Island nations, Michaela Reitterer, who is the owner and manager of Vienna's Hotel Stadthalle examined the different aspects related with the development of sustainable tourism in Balearic Islands; it’s a destination that has to meet the maturity level and is facing the requirement to manage the enormous mass tourism through product diversification. The research explored that enhancing the country inns with the use of different sustainable measures will be beneficial economically and environmentally. The authors also investigated that every company would require to examine the water management areas, along with energy and waste management areas for examining the rural capacity. 

Concerning the development of sustainable tourism indicators, Miller (2001) has initiated the Delphi Survey for the researchers in the tourism area, with an aim to attain the insights over signs applied for measuring the development of sustainable tourism. Respondents agreed that tourism sector should take the initiative on plan development, mainly viewing the leadership of national government and for starting guidance, which includes every stakeholder. Miller recommends that offering a similar sustainable tourism definition; it is required to examine the relevant indicators on the basis of location, while simultaneously exploring the international based examples, which are common to tourism. 

Zolfani (2015) explored around 13 policymakers of sustainable tourism related with studies, which also cover the study conducted by Clayton (2003), which examine the coherence of policy and development of sustainable tourism in the Caribbean. The author explains the significance of environment as well as social interests while building the economic plans for the long term for the country; he has also explored that fiscal policy plays a vital role in the failure and success of the plan based on sustainable tourism. For example, the level of state ownership, subsidies, and tax reform. He has also explored that social inclusion is essential for the products of sustainable tourism, as it contributes to the full society health, minimize the crime and lead to social conflicts. Finally, a flexible plan also includes the macro, micro, and sectoral interests, which permit the nation in developing the economic strategies for the long term, and the one which is not governed with the aim of gaining profits for short term like preserving resources, both socially and naturally. In summary, scholars have discussed various significant problems that are required to have further investigation, including the requirement for evaluating the international best practices of developing sustainable tourism.

Research Appendix

Nature and Source of Primary Research

The primary research is conducted through conducting an interview of authors for understanding their thoughts on sustainable tourism. Through interview, it became easy to gain knowledge of hotels who have shifted to zero-carbon policy and waste management. In the interview we asked few questions, such as,

What are all measures taken by your hotel for having zero-carbon emission?

  1. Planting of more trees near to hotel

  2. Using local ingredients for food

  3. Use of featured mattresses, which are made of coco fibre and natural rubber. 

  4. Purify water. 

  5. Use of solar panels, thermal heat, and solar cells

What all socio-economic and environmental impacts occur through sustainable tourism?

  1. Contributes in society health

  2. Minimize the crime

  3. Lead to social conflicts

  4. Macro, micro, and sectoral interests permit in developing the economic strategies for the long term

  5. It gain profits for short term like preserving resources

What is the visitor’s response to eco-tourism?

  1. Inclined towards donating the initiatives for local conservation

  2. Purchase local products and contribute in minimizing the leakages

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