There is a growing trend working its way around this country in the hospitality industry. This new “trend” is for hotels to have their own beehives. While some hotels are hosting their own hives for the obvious reason, many are doing it simply because it is the right thing to do. The Radisson Blu Mall of America is one of those hotels.
The Bee Squad
The Radisson Blu Mall of America hotel has partnered with Bee Squad to host beehives on its rooftop. The official name of the network is called the Bee Network, which is made up of various properties hosting on-site apiaries throughout the Twin Cities areas.
While raw honey is a benefit of hosting the apiaries, it is far from the real purpose. The hives at the hotels are used for various research projects as well as bringing more attention to the threat our pollinators currently face. Bee Squad Program Manager, Bridget Mendel, stated it is not just about honey bees, either, as there are numerous pollinators that are getting closer and closer to extinction.
Guests at the property are not in danger, as they are never allowed on the rooftop to visit the bees. However, the bees will sometimes make an appearance at events to generate more interest in the project.
Marriott is also actively involved in the honey bee crisis. In fact, Matt Sanchez, a chef at Sawgrass Marriott in Florida, is the first licensed beekeeper in the history of Marriott International. Sanchez stated, “Bees are the ‘canary in the coal mine.’ They’ve always been stress beacons for us.” Sanchez stated bees will often die when there is a threat in the area, such as dangerous pesticides being used. If he sees the bees dying off for an unexplained reason, it gives him a heads up that there could be a problem. “By keeping bees, you’re more aware of and connected to everything in your community,” he stated.
Another way these properties are raising awareness is by incorporating some of the raw honey harvested from the hives into menu items and spa treatments. It should be noted, the hotels reportedly only harvest a small amount of the honey, especially in the colder areas, because the bees need the honey to survive more than the hotels need the profits it could provide.
The honey is also a great way to literally promote the local “flavor.” Every state, and even different parts of states, will have plants in the area that are unique from each other. Much like the Manuka plant creates a unique flavor for Manuka honey, these local plants and flowers influence the flavor of honey by the bees in each city and area. A Provenance hotel executive explains, “For example, if you taste the honey from Hotel Lucia — which is closest to the river, where there are cherry blossoms — it tastes different from the honey at Hotel deLuxe. At Hotel deLuxe, you can taste the rose blossoms that are closer to that property.”
If all this talk about honey has you craving the sweet stuff, maybe you would like to try some authentic New Zealand Manuka honey. For more information about our honey or if you would l like to get an order started, please click here. And, remember, we offer FREE shipping on all orders of $150 or more.