Peter Lawrence, founder of @wythehotel with @corahilts
@wythehotel by @jamieneasham
@wythehotel by @jamieneasham
Our Eco Hotel Series: The Wythe Hotel, Brooklyn NYC
Our co-founder Cora Hilts was recently in New York City for work and was lucky enough to stay at Brooklyn’s first regenerative hotel, the Wythe Hotel in Williamsburg! The Wythe Hotel embodies renewal by intelligently weaving old with the new. Housed in a converted factory built in 1901, this urban boutique hotel seamlessly blends modern features with historical elements to create a warm, welcoming dimension for visitors and locals looking to feel connected and find a sense of place.
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Making the Old New Again
One of the hotel’s most notable features is its adaptive reuse design that preserves the building’s century-old industrial roots. The hotel has retained the original features of the building, such as the exposed brick walls, cast iron columns, wooden ceilings, and arched windows, and has beautifully showcased them. Wythe Hotel also hired local craftsmen to repurpose materials found in the building’s demolition to create unique and artistic guest room furnishings, adding a touch of local artistry to each room. This initiative aligns with SDG 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities, Target 11.4, which aims to protect and safeguard the world’s cultural and natural heritage.
Farm to Table Dining
The Wythe prioritizes responsible consumption and production in their food waste reduction initiatives. Their restaurant, Le Crocodile, sources its ingredients from local and sustainable producers and focuses on creating seasonal and inventive menus. Any food waste is composted and used to grow fresh produce, which is then used in the restaurant. This initiative aligns with SDG 12: Responsible Consumption and Production, Target 12.3, which aims to reduce food waste at the retail and consumer levels and reduce food losses along production and supply chains.
Art and Furniture by Local Artists
Since inception, the Wythe founders have put creativity at the center of all they do. Finding new and inclusive ways of engaging the art community in Brooklyn and greater New York City is an ever-evolving process, rooted in the belief that great hospitality includes engaging with beauty. The Wythe tapped Brooklyn-based artist Tom Fruin to create the iconic Hotel sign on the building’s exterior and worked with Steve “ESPO” Powers and Duke Riley, who contributed pieces to the public spaces. But when it came time to put art into the hotel’s 70 rooms, they needed some help. So they hired another local artist, Kimia Ferdowsi Kline, to be the hotel’s art curator. A talented painter who’s extremely plugged into Brooklyn’s art scene, Kline has gradually built up the hotel’s collection, which contains works by Brad Kahlhamer, EJ Hauser, Jason Stopa, Michelle Segre, Susumu Kamijo, Kathy Bradford, Chris Martin, Marina Adams, and Rachel Eulena Williams, among others.
Working with Oysters to Restore the Hudson River
Beyond its commitment to the community, the Wythe also strives to reduce waste and assist in ecosystem restoration. The hotel’s restaurant, Le Crocodile, partners with the non-profit Billion Oyster Project to reuse discarded shells from oysters, clams, and scallops served in the restaurant. These shells undergo a year-long curing process before being seeded with oyster larvae and placed in reef restoration sites, contributing to the project’s goal of restoring one billion oysters to New York Harbor. This initiative aligns with SDG 14: Life Below Water, Target 14.2, which aims to sustainably manage and protect marine and coastal ecosystems and take action for their restoration.
Member of Regenerative Travel!
The Wythe Hotel is the first New York member of Regenerative Travel, a community of hotels dedicated to regenerative tourism. We actually learned about them through this, as we recently had the founder, David Leventhal, on our podcast – listen here! Their commitment to environmentally responsible and community-minded practices is evident in our Regenerative Impact Statement, where we strive to achieve the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through our operations.
What to pack for a weekend at the Wythe?
Shadows Sun – The brand is committed to creating the most comfortable and easy-to-style stapes that are created with the Earth in mind. Shadows Sun makes their vintage-inspired tops with GOTS Certified Organic Cotton, from farms in India that use Regenerative farming methods. All their dyes and inks are non-toxic and water-based, free from any harmful chemicals. They are transparent about their supply chain, and they follow strict labor standards, including payment of a living wage, safe working conditions, and of course no child labor. Perfect for lounging around the Wythe or pairing with a blazer to go out with!
1 Atelier – The 1 Atelier Farm To Arm Capsule is the first luxury accessories offering designed to be net-zero carbon, biodegradable, and waste-free. Starting with leather that is sourced from regenerative farms in the United States and vegetable-tanned by a 117-year-old American tannery using only natural ingredients, each piece is then meticulously handcrafted-to-order by the craftspeople at their Atelier in the Garment District of New York City. Already a pioneer in sustainable luxury, 1 Atelier set out to create a beautifully designed collection that contributes more fully to the drastic systemic change required to eliminate the devastating impact that the fashion industry has on the environment. There is a bag for anyone in this collection – they are sophisticated, elegant, and practical. Amazing for styling to take out into the City for night or day!