Although The Maine Stay Inn hasn’t officially applied for recognition as a “ Green” hotel or bed and
breakfast, we are taking big steps to become as eco-friendly as possible. After taking over in April 2008, we instituted the beginnings of a recycling program. It may seem a little unconventional, but we started to pick returnable containers out of guest room trash. At the time, the only recycling in place was for our personal amenities (soaps, shampoos, conditioners, etc.), which get picked up, sterilized, and recycled for needy individuals. Last spring we also began using green cleaning products manufactured by Clorox. Unfortunately their toilet bowl cleaner is not antibacterial, and we are NOT willing to compromised on that front. I want to know that my toilet isn’t germy, and we assume you want the same. (Let us know if you would prefer the green toilet bowl cleaner instead – we do keep it in stock for our environmentally conscious guests.) After seeing how receptive our guests were to these changes, we added cards into guest rooms giving them the option to reuse their towels. A towel on the rack means, “I choose to reuse” but one in the tub or on the floor says, “Please replace.” I have to admit, we really don’t want to leave you with super soggy linens, so we often replace a dripping washcloth.
Our next big change came this spring, after discovering that our draperies had to be removed from the rooms for several days for a deep cleaning. A little research yielded a “green” carpet and upholstery cleaning company, Chem-Dry. Without harsh soaps or detergents, fabrics are cleaned with natural ingredients and carbonated water, using a process that requires 10-20% of the water in traditional techniques. Since our discovery, all carpets, draperies, and many upholstered items have been cleaned this way.
And starting this fall, in addition to recycling plastics, we are beginning a paper-product recycling program!