GUESTS at a Portsmouth hotel can now recharge electric cars for free thanks to an innovative green scheme.
The Marriott Hotel in Southampton Road has installed two charging bays for electric cars at a cost of £8,000, partly funded by Portsmouth City Council.
Marriott general manager BJ Schreuder said guests staying at the hotel or eating at its restaurant could have their electric cars charged from 20 per cent up to 80 per cent, giving them another 100 miles worth of driving power.
Mr Schreuder said the bays were part of a continuing green program at the hotel.
He said: ‘We signed up for the Green Business Tourism Scheme and we already recycle 100 per cent of our waste.
‘We have an environmental team at the hotel that meets every month to come up with ideas, and this was one that came up.
‘As electrical cars are becoming more popular – people believe they’re the way of the future – we decided to speak to Marriott International and said that we could build a prototype for other hotels in Europe.’
Mr Schreuder said electric cars often had differing specifications and required different leads, but he hoped the Marriott’s scheme would help introduce standardisation into car-charging stations.
He said: ‘Some other hotels and councils are offering car charging, but it’s all loose.
‘This will be a role model for all of the Marriott hotels in the UK and in Europe.’
Mr Schreuder said it only costs £1.50 to £2 to recharge an electric car.
Mr Schreuder said: ‘It’s not a money-making machine but it’s part of being a good green hotel.’
He said he expected the charging stations would be popular with businesspeople.
‘We have a lot of customers from BAE Systems and IBM, and they want to be staying in environmentally-friendly hotels to support their own ideologies.’
He said he wanted to thank Craig Lamberton at the council and Alex Bamberg of ChargePoint Services UK for GE for their support with the project.