Wren Urban Nest Dublin – Leading the Way in Sustainable Hotels

It’s wonderful when a place you really like also turns out to have brilliant #sustainability credentials. So I was delighted, when searching for a good example of sustainability in tourism globally, to come across Wren Urban Nest Dublin tucked away in the heart of Dublin, less than a kilometre from my home. (International articles referencing its sustainability credentials include CNN TravelThe Guardian and Architect’s Journal.)

To travel or not to #travel ? Tourism is a tricky area for consumers wanting to make responsible choices. It accounts for 8% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions, making it a significant contributor to the climate crisis. And yet it’s an important economic driver, contributing 10% of global GDP and accounting for one in every 10 jobs worldwide.

However most of the carbon footprint from #tourism comes from the travel to get there, as this chart from The Sustainable Travel Organisation #sustainabletravel illustrates.


This doesn’t let hotels off the hook – they need to do more than asking us to “help save the planet” by re-using towels! And Wren does a lot more than that.

The building was designed by architects BDP (Building Design Partnership Ltd) with sustainability as a key criteria. It uses 100 per cent renewable energy, complying with the World Green Building Council’s definition of ‘net zero operational carbon’ without the need to purchase carbon offsets. The hotel’s ventilation system captures and re-uses more than 80% of heat lost, and water conservation and low-loss fittings make water demand approximately 60% lower than a typical hotel. They make it a policy to buy local, publicly listing their suppliers.

A clever graphic on their website (below) shows the myriad of ways the hotel is addressing sustainability. I love the use of wonky carrots, and the use of repurposed wood in the bar.

The Wren is not only Ireland’s most sustainable hotel, it’s also a gorgeous and interesting place to have a drink, dine or stay. I can heartily recommend it!



his is the seventh in a year-long series of weekly blogs by Jean Callanan telling stories of businesses and brands that are doing inspiring and innovative things in addressing climate change. Read the background thinking and the stories of Knorr Future 50 FoodsAn PostGood on You , Notpla and Low Carbon Materials.