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Energy Efficiency Upgradation at The Oxford Hotel Reduces Monthly Utility Costs

Denver Hotel Improvements Reduce Average Monthly Electricity Costs 47 Percent

Building on a long history of using the latest infrastructure systems, the owners and operators of Denver's first hotel, The Oxford Hotel, recently completed upgrades on the building that improve energy efficiency while decreasing average monthly utility costs by 47 percent.

In addition to the utility cost savings the systems generated, Sage Hospitality Resources -- which owns and operates The Oxford Hotel -- also benefited from a $34,000 rebate from Xcel Energy, a leading combination electric and natural gas company.

The improvements are part of an extensive energy efficiency, conservation and sustainability program undertaken by Sage Hospitality Resources. Located in the historic LoDo district (lower downtown) in Denver, the luxury boutique hotel is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

First opened in 1891 and recently renovated, the 80-room Oxford Hotel needed improvements to replace aging equipment and to maintain temperature and humidity. Stable environmental conditions are required to preserve the hotel's extensive collection of 19th and 20th century paintings of the American West.

The Oxford Hotel has always been on the forefront of new technologies. Even in its earliest days, the hotel maintained its own power plant with an advanced system of steam heating, electricity and gas lighting.

The infrastructure systems needed to be upgraded without compromising the hotel's originality and charm while providing system redundancy and increasing energy efficiency. In order to help stimulate the state's economy, ownership at The Oxford Hotel insisted on collaborating with a Colorado manufacturer -- in this case, Trane -- to complete the improvements.

"Sage Hospitality Resources is dedicated to providing an excellent guest experience and to preserving the integrity and historic charm of The Oxford Hotel. We're pleased that these upgrades achieve all our goals while saving significant costs and creating a more environmentally friendly and sustainable property," said Walter Isenberg, president and chief executive officer of Sage Hospitality Resources.

In recognition of the importance of these upgrades and of the owners' commitment to efficient and sustainable energy usage, to operational efficiency and to environmental responsibility, The Oxford Hotel will receive the "Trane Energy Efficiency Leader in Lodging Award."

Details of the award presentation:

  • Scott Krull, western territory vice president, Trane, will present the award to Isenberg

  • The awards presentation will be at noon on Nov. 5 in the Sage Conference Room at The Oxford Hotel, 1600 17th St., Denver, Colo. 80202

Customized Upgrades Improve Bottom Line

After a thorough building assessment, Sage Hospitality Resources management selected energy conservation measures that will best meet their business objectives of improving energy efficiency and decreasing utility costs to improve the bottom line. Their objectives also included improving indoor air quality and maintaining consistent temperature and humidity. Improvements were started in February 2009 and completed in April 2009.

New systems included two highly efficient chillers as well as a building automation system to optimize operation of the overall heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) system. Management used creativity and innovation to install the chiller systems in a basement not originally designed to accommodate such an advanced system: disassembling the entire system in advance and reassembling it onsite. Throughout the process, great care was taken to avoid guest inconvenience.

Two chilled water systems were included to ensure uninterrupted service, and each includes dual compressors for added flexibility and system redundancy. During high demand, the backup chiller and secondary compressors run as needed. To boost efficiency, a plate-and-frame heat exchanger was installed in the chilled water system to provide free cooling during winter months -- without the need to operate the new electric chillers.


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