High Hotels Ltd. Announces First 100 Percent Solar-Powered Marriott-Branded Property in U.S.

$1.5 million solar investment provides all electrical energy for Courtyard-Lancaster

Lancaster, Pa., July 11, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- High Hotels Ltd. announced today it is installing a $1.5 million solar array that will generate 100 percent of the electrical power required to operate one of its existing hotels in Greenfield Corporate Center. The completed installation will make the 133-room Courtyard by Marriott-Lancaster at 1931 Hospitality Drive the first Marriott-branded hotel in the United States with 100 percent of its electricity needs generated from solar power. It is also believed to be the first solar array in the country installed for the sole purpose of generating 100 percent of the electricity needs of a hotel.

“This is an exciting approach to addressing our energy needs that aligns very well with High’s commitment to environmental stewardship,” said Russ Urban, president of High Hotels.

“We’ve been advancing many environmentally responsible practices across our hotel portfolio, including converting the interior and exterior lighting at the Lancaster Courtyard to LED, which will lower electricity demand by 15 percent,” continued Urban. “Installing solar is another important step in this progression, and we will look to apply lessons from this as we expand our portfolio of premium select-service hotels.”

(To view a detailed media kit and infographics, please visit https://bit.ly/2u6Zfeo)

The Lancaster-based, family-owned hotel developer, owner, and operator is working in partnership with Marriott International Inc. to realize this vision. “High Hotels is a very forward-thinking owner and operator of our select-service hotels, well known for their commitment to impeccable quality and superior customer service,” said John Whitwell, vice president, global operations, Classic Select Brands, Marriott International. “This investment highlights the team’s innovative leadership and aligns well with Marriott’s sustainability strategy.”

The installation of more than 2,700 ballasted photovoltaic panels will fill an area more than two football fields in size. After evaluating several on-site and near-site alternatives, High Hotels decided to install the solar array on the roof of a nearby building in Greenfield Corporate Center. Using the existing roof saves more than three acres of open land and has additional aesthetic benefits. The solar array will produce 1,239,000 kWh of power for the hotel, which consumes 1,177,000 kWh. Any excess power will be sold to the utility.

High Hotels received a grant of $504,900 from the Commonwealth Financing Authority (CFA) through the Solar Energy Program to complete the project.  An independent agency of the Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED), the CFA is responsible for evaluating projects and awarding funds for a variety of economic development programs, including the Solar Energy Program. The project will receive a solar renewable energy credit which will be conveyed to the CFA to provide the agency with more funds to offer grants in the future.

"This is a cutting-edge project that is exactly the kind we are looking for to promote the generation and use of solar energy," said DCED Secretary Dennis Davin. "I am very pleased that the first Marriott in the U.S. to receive 100% of its electric needs through renewable solar energy is located right here in Central Pennsylvania." Secretary Davin also serves as chairman of the CFA's board.

Panels for the solar array will be Q Cells manufactured by Hanwha Cells Co., Ltd., headquartered in Seoul, South Korea (NASDAQ:HQCL). Ephrata, Pa.-based Meadow Valley Electric Inc. will install the array in the second and third quarters of 2018 with commissioning targeted for September 2018.

Continuing a Tradition at Greenfield Corporate Center

Greenfield Corporate Center in Lancaster, Pa., is a 600-acre master planned mixed-use campus with a strong track record of sustainable practices going back many decades, including:

  • Restoration of two riparian buffers along the streams that cross the corporate center, including being the first property of its kind in Lancaster to restore such a buffer in 1999
  • Installation of free electric vehicle charging stations in 2012
  • Upgrade of campus buildings with high-efficiency fluorescent lighting, or LED, as well as occupancy sensors
  • Modification of planting areas to indigenous species to reduce watering requirements  
  • Roof replacements made with increased insulation to prevent heating and cooling loss
  • Installation of high-efficiency HVAC systems
  • Materials removed in renovations recycled; new material selections reviewed for recyclable content in their manufacturing

According to Mark Fitzgerald, president and chief operating officer of High Real Estate Group LLC, Greenfield Corporate Center embodies the company’s founding, values-based principles stated in The High Philosophy, including the tenet of contributing to a world of beauty, prosperity, and peace. “We’ve invested $4 million in energy conservation initiatives over the last ten years,” said Fitzgerald. “This new investment in solar energy generation furthers and strengthens that commitment.”

About High Hotels Ltd. 

High Hotels Ltd. develops, acquires, owns, and operates award-winning select-service and extended-stay hotels in the mid-Atlantic and Northeast regions. The family-owned company’s properties are franchised through Hilton Hotels Corporation and Marriott International, Inc., and currently serve Harrisburg-West (3), Lancaster (2), Allentown-Bethlehem, Reading, Wilkes-Barre, and York, Pa.; Ewing (2), and Mt. Laurel, N.J.; and, Middletown, N.Y. (2). An affiliate of High Real Estate Group LLC based in Lancaster, Pa., High Hotels is recognized as a leader and has received many awards for excellent customer service. More information is available at www.HighHotels.com or 717.293.4446.

About High Real Estate Group LLC

High Real Estate Group is a full-service real estate organization providing expertise in development, brokerage, architecture, construction, and investments, and holds real estate assets with an estimated market value of approximately $1 billion. Through its affiliate, High Associates Ltd., High also offers a full complement of real estate services including asset and property management, appraisal services, grounds and property maintenance, strategic planning, and consulting. The company manages more than 9 million square feet of office, industrial, multi-family, hotel, and retail properties throughout the eastern United States. High Real Estate Group is family-owned and based in Greenfield Corporate Center, East Lampeter Township, Lancaster, Pa. More information is available at www.HighRealEstateGroup.com or 1-800-638-4414.


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Russ Urban, president of High Hotels Ltd., stands at the Courtyard by Marriott in Lancaster, Pa, the first Marriott-branded hotel in the U.S. with 100 percent of its electricity needs generated from solar power. High Hotels Ltd.’s investment in a nearby photovoltaic solar array will generate 100 percent of the electricity required to operate The Courtyard by Marriott in Lancaster, Pa. The hotel and solar array are both located in Greenfield Corporate Center, a 600-acre master planned mixed-use campus developed by High Real Estate Group LLC.
Pictured left to right standing atop the roof of the warehouse where the solar array is being installed are:
Mike Lorelli, Sr. Vice President, Commercial Asset Management, High Associates Ltd.; Jeremy Geib, General Manager, High Hotels Ltd.; Russ Urban, President, High Hotels Ltd.; Jim Baxter, Manager of Facilities, High Associates, Ltd.

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