Bardessono Hotel, Restaurant and Spa in Yountville in California's Napa Valley has has been awarded LEED Platinum certification for sustainable and environmentally friendly design,...

Bardessono Hotel, Restaurant and Spa in Yountville in California’s Napa Valley has has been awarded LEED Platinum certification for sustainable and environmentally friendly design, an achievement reached by only two other hotels in the world, on the first anniversary of its opening.

Phil Sherburne says he built Bardessono with the intention of creating a hotel that provides guests with a luxurious experience while simultaneously protecting the environment. “I believe it is critical for the development community to be a leader in the effort to preserve a healthy planet. We can’t just continue to talk about environmental problems, we have to begin to act. I hope we have provided an example from which others can benefit,” says Sherburne.

The hotel’s design, construction and operation followed guidelines of the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Green Building Rating System, the nationally accepted benchmark in the United States for high performance green buildings.

LEED promotes a whole-building approach to sustainability by recognizing performance in six key areas of human and environmental health: sustainable site development, water savings, energy efficiency, materials selection, indoor environmental quality, and innovation in design. Certification levels include Platinum, Gold, Silver and Standard in descending order of the rigor of the requirements.

This photograph shows the entrance to the LEED Platinum-certified hotel Bardessono in Yountville in California's Napa Valley. As of February 2010, Bardessono ― which opened in February 2009 ― was one of only three LEED Platinum-certified hotels in the world

Examples of some of the primary sustainable practices that qualified the hotel for LEED Platinum certification include:

Solar power: 947 solar panels are installed on the flat roofs of the buildings in a manner so as not to be visible to the neighboring community. The 200-kilowatt solar energy system provides a significant portion of the Bardessono’s electrical energy requirement;

Geothermal: 72 300-ft geothermal wells were drilled to work with a ground source heat pump system to heat and cool rooms and heat domestic water. Consequently, the only electricity used in this system is for operation of the pumps;

Construction: More than 93 per cent of building waste was recycled;

Reuse of materials: The stone featured on both the exterior and interior of the building was recycled from the stone blocks of an old wine cellar on the property.  All of the wood visible on the exterior and interior of the buildings was milled from salvaged trees, including Monterey Cypress, Orchard Walnut, Redwood and Elm;

Heat retention: Guest rooms are constructed to minimize solar heat gain with wide overhangs and specially designed, motor-controlled exterior Venetian blinds, driven by occupation criteria delivered through the fully converged Internet Protocol (IP) network developed by MTM Luxury Lodging.  Large expanses of glass allow winter sunrays to naturally warm rooms and enhance daytime lighting;

Lighting: LED and fluorescent lamps are used throughout the property and IP network-driven sensors in the rooms extinguish lights when rooms are unoccupied;

Low water use: Low water flow fixtures, dual flush toilets and waterless urinals are used. Outdoors, drought-resistant indigenous landscaping prevails, serviced by an efficient buried drip irrigation system;

Water recycling: All grey and black water is treated and recycled for irrigation uses by the Town of Yountville;

Creek-side protection: Bardessono’s buildings are set back 35ft from Hopper Creek with native riparian plants installed to restore a hospitable natural environment for wildlife and fish, while minimizing soil erosion; and

Compost: With a goal of contributing as little as possible to thewaste stream, the Bardessono composts all kitchen and garden vegetable and plant waste in an “Earth Tub”.

The Bardessono Hotel opened in February 2009 with 62 guest rooms, restaurant and spa in Yountville, California, the heart of the Napa Valley. For more information about the hotel, which is managed by MTM Luxury Lodging, visit

MTM Luxury Lodging is a luxury hotel management company headquartered in Kirkland, Washington, just outside of Seattle. The company specializes in managing independent luxury hotels, inns and resorts located in spectacular settings. Its collection of boutique hotels in Washington state includes Cave B Inn at SageCliffe (Quincy); Hotel 1000 (downtown Seattle); Willows Lodge (Woodinville); and Woodmark Hotel, Yacht Club & Spa (Kirkland). Other MTM luxury properties from coast to coast include The Liberty Hotel (Boston) and Bardessono. For more information, visit