This hotel chain’s slogan – It’s a New Stay® – points to a more upscale experience, including an energy-saving conversion to LED lighting.
The first Courtyard by Marriott in the country was built in 1983 in Atlanta and was Marriott’s initial sister brand. Although it originally targeted business travelers seeking quality service at affordable prices, over the years Courtyard started catering to the vacationer as well.
Four years ago, the hotel chain unveiled a new, updated style for its lobbies and began offering more upscale amenities. New features for the renovated properties include a redesigned restaurant/bar area that provides a variety of breakfast and dinner options, an evening bar with specialty beverages, an expanded business center, a more modern lounge and seating area, and an expanded space for the small store in the lobby.
When the Courtyard Louisville East in Kentucky underwent its redesign for the lobby and public spaces, the hotel management decided the time was right to find a premium lighting system that could maximize its energy efficiency. After evaluating several companies, the management chose Cree Lighting.
The Courtyard Louisville East lobby now features the lighting manufacturer’s CR6® LED downlights, with each consuming only 10.5 watts. The lighting fixtures reportedly lend an improved color quality to the chain’s new red and orange furniture. The patented TrueWhite technology delivers high efficiency with superb light characteristics and color accuracy, while maintaining color consistency over the life of the product.
In all, 54 CR6 LED downlights were specified to replace the hotel’s 65-watt BR30 light bulbs. The CR6 offers up to 64 lumens per watt and is Energy Star-rated. In addition, 15 Cree LBR-30® LED lamps, which use only 12 watts, also went into the lobby, replacing other 65-watt BR30s. Utilizing new technology, the LBR-30 delivers high-efficacy light with beautiful, warm color characteristics by mixing the light from red and yellow LEDs.
The administrative office also received a lighting upgrade with two Cree LR24® LED troffers, plus two CR24® troffers were installed in the fitness room. The LR24 is a new type of architectural lay-in designed for applications that require high-ambient light levels; the CR24 delivers up to 5,000 lumens of 90+ CRI light while achieving 90 to 110 lumens per watt.
When planning the complete renovation of the lobby, Courtyard Louisville East management expected the modern new furniture to improve the lobby’s look. However, they were in for a pleasant surprise. The furniture turned out looking even better than expected they say, thanks to the LED lighting from Cree. “The lights really pop,” says general manager Larry Carrico, who adds that guests are noticing the difference.
Not only is the light quality impressive, but the efficiency of the Cree lighting system means the hotel is saving a considerable amount of energy on the lobby lights, which are on 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Since the CR6 LED downlights are dimmable to five percent, hotel employees regularly turn them down in the evenings, which help save even more energy.
Previously, the hotel staff used to change burned-out, 65-watt incandescent light bulbs about once every four to six months. Since the installation in August 2010, the employees haven’t had to touch a single LED. Cree’s CR6 LED downlights are estimated to last 50,000 hours, which means the hotel could leave them on 24 hours a day, seven days a week and not have to worry about replacing one for at least five-and-a-half years.
With energy consumption reduced by 80 percent, hotel management is expecting to see a payback of approximately 15 months on its purchase.