Editorial Board   

Mr. Courtnell

Paul Courtnell

Director, Leisure & Resorts Group, Gunster LLP

Paul Courtnell Jr. is a senior partner at Gunster, Attorneys at Law with eight offices in Florida. He developed The Leisure and Resorts Group and serves as Director. The Group provides specialized legal and consulting services to the hospitality, recreational and resort development industries. Mr. Courtnell earned his undergraduate degree from Ohio State University in 1965 and his Juris Doctor degree from the University of Florida School of Law in 1973, both with honors. Mr. Courtnell joined Gunster in 1976 and concentrates in the areas of: lodging and resorts; real estate finance (representing both borrowers and lenders); commercial real estate and hospitality transactions; hotel management and franchise agreements; public finance; public/private partnerships; club structures; and timeshare. Mr. Courtnell was nationally recognized in 2010 by the leading legal directory Chambers and Partners in the area of Leisure & Hospitality. He is member of the Florida Bar, Urban Land Institute (Recreational Development Council), International Society of Hospitality Consultants (ISHC) and American Resort Development Association (ARDA). His experience with resort real estate, real estate finance and hospitality properties spans four decades. Mr. Courtnell is a featured speaker for the National Golf Foundation, the Urban Land Institute, ARDA, the Lodging Conference, and other organizations.

Mr. Courtnell can be contacted at 561-650-0517 or pcourtnell@gunster.com

Coming up in May 2020...

Eco-Friendly Practices: Creative Innovation

Being eco-friendly is no longer a fad. It is an urgent planetary need and hotels are actively doing their part to reduce their carbon footprint by implementing sustainable, green practices. In addition to the goodwill derived from doing the right thing, hotels are also realizing the benefits to their business. A large percentage of Millennials expect hotels to be eco-friendly and will only patronize those properties that are proudly conforming. Consequently, more hotels are realizing that sustainability is a key element in a successful branding strategy. In addition, going green can lead to a more profitable bottom line, as savings on electricity, water and cleaning materials can add up. Also, there are other advantages that come with being an eco-friendly business, such as government subsidies and tax and loan incentives. As a result, many hotels are finding innovative ways to integrate eco-friendly practices into their business. Geo-thermal energy systems, along with energy-from-waste systems, are being used to heat and cool the property. Passive solar panels, green roofs, natural lighting and natural ventilation strategies also assist in energy conservation. Low-flow water systems and plumbing fixtures make a contribution, as does eco-friendly hardwood flooring, and energy efficient televisions and appliances throughout the property. In addition, some hotels have implemented in-room recycling programs, and only provide all-natural, personal care items. One hotel has actually constructed a bee-keeping operation on their grounds. Not only is this good for the bees but the hotel also produces products from the operation which they sell. This kind of creative innovation also holds enormous appeal to guests. The May issue of the Hotel Business Review will document what some hotels are doing to integrate sustainable practices into their operations and how they are benefiting from them.