VERIFIED™️ Responsible Hospitality

VERIFIED™ Responsible Hospitality provides hotels and their restaurants and spas with clearly defined best practices to protect the environment and support the wellbeing of employees, guests and the community — without compromising guest experience.

Designed in collaboration with highly respected hotelier Hervé Houdré, a leader in sustainability, this program creates a global standard for the world’s finest hotels and a trusted third-party verification to share with guests and travel advisors.


Properties in Malta and Gozo which participated in the 2023 Sharecare Verified will be contacted to transition to the new Responsible Hospitality Verified by Forbes Travel Guide. New properties are encouraged to apply and participate in this exciting program. This reflects an evolution of the program to reflect the changing requirements of properties in a post-COVID environment. While safety considerations have been kept, additional sustainability dimensions have been added to the prestigious Responsible Hospitality by Forbes Travel Guide”.

Health Security

The property should have:

  • A contagious disease action plan
  • Communication of health safety protocols to guests
  • Regular inspections to minimize Legionnaire’s Disease
  • Sanitation products in the fitness center

Public Areas

This section includes standards regarding energy efficiency and food waste reduction.

The property should have in place:

  • An energy efficiency program
  • LED lighting and sensored lighting
  • Waste management program, including composting
  • Communication of sustainability initiatives, such as on the property website


Mandatory Standards or Compliance:

  • 90% of Front of House Lighting is Energy Efficient. This includes Public Areas and Guest Rooms.
  • The Property has proper organic waste management plan including a thorough composting program.

Front Office


The following section covers standards that relate to eliminating paper products in traditionally paper-heavy interactions.Specifically, digital options should be used for:

  • Arrival and Departure
  • In lieu of collateral such welcome letters, maps and property information

Mandatory Standard for Compliance

  • The check-in / check-out process does not require the guest to sign any paper unless required by law and the guest is offered the opportunity to have their folio emailed upon check-out. If paper is currently used for the check-in / check-out process, there is a plan to eliminate this over the next 12 months.

Sustainability Efforts

The following section includes standards that relate to promoting sustainability efforts at check in and offering digital options for Concierge and Front Office interactions.

This includes:

  • Explaining sustainability programs at check in, such as linen program or support for a charitable organisation
  • Digital collateral/apps for the concierge and sustainable printer setting
  • Digital newspapers

Responsible Materials

This section includes standards about materials used for baggage and claim tickets, room keys and drinkware.

Key Points:

  • If printed items are unavoidable, they are on 100% recycled paper or FSC-certified paper
  • Plastic is not used for any claim ticket or room key
  • Water is provided in glass, aluminum or reusable containers


This section includes standards on hotel vehicles and the amenities they include as well as electric vehicle charging stations.

Key Points:

  • Electric or hybrid hotel transportation is provided or suggested
  • Wi-Fi is available in vehicles and only digital reading materials are offered
  • Electric vehicle charging stations are available
  • Electric golf carts are used

Common Areas

This section addresses amenities provided in public area restrooms or other public areas.

Key Points:

  • Towels are not wrapped in plastic; paper towels are not used
  • Amenities, such as soap, shampoo and location, are sustainable and non-toxic
  • Dispensers are refillable.



This section covers standards that relate to the housekeeping linen program, cleaning products used and housekeeping SOP.


These standards look at how/if your property:

  • Offers a linen program and communicates this to guests
  • Uses non-toxic and safe cleaning products
  • Avoids unnecessary energy usage and replenishment of amenities

Mandatory Standards for Compliance:

  • The hotel offers the opportunity for guests to participate in a Housekeeping Linen programme.
  • All maintenance an cleaning products are non-toxic an safe for people and the environment

Guest Room Sustainability Efforts

This section addresses energy-efficient appliances and HVAC, linens and amenities provided in the guest room, recycling bins in the room and water conservation.

Key Points: 

  • Appropriate number of robs and slippers provided
  • Bathroom amenity dispensers are refillable
  • Products are non-toxic and eco-friendly
  • Low-flow shower heads and toilets used.

Sustainable Materials

This section largely addresses the elimination of plastic and eexcessive packaging in the room and laundry service.

Plastic and excessive paper usage should be avoided for:

  • Wastebaskets
  • Laundry Service
  • Slippers
  • Lining of drawers and Shelves

Food & Beverage

Restaurants & Bars – Responsible Offerings

This section evaluates in depth the menu offerings at the F&B outlets on property. Menu/Buffet items should be:

  • 50% seasonal, local, organic, including fruits and vegetables
  • Healthy and meet a variety of dietary restrictions
  • Free of endangered species and Fair Trade (coffee, tea, chocolate and vanilla)
  • 20% plant-based

Restaurants & Bars – Responsible Materials

These standards address the materials used for napkins, tablecloths, serviceware, straws, an take-out containers.


Key Points:

  • Cloth napkins are used; tablecloths are avoided or made of sustainable material
  • Reusable drinkware in used; no plastic
  • Straws are available only upon request an sustainable, if used.

In-Room Dining

This section evaluates the menu offerings available for in-room dining.


Key Points:

  • Overall menu offerings and fruits and vegetables are 50% seasonal, local, organic
  • Healthy choices are available and meet a variety of dietary restrictions
  • Menu should be digital and a digital ordering software should be available

Meetings & Events

The standards in this section address waste management, sustainable food and beverage offerings and programming for meetings and events on property.


Key Points:

  • Wastebins are separated into recycling and waste
  • Tablecloths are not used
  • 50% of food and beverage offerings are local, seasonal, organic, healthy
  • Breakout sessions promote local area/culture/community

Charitable Engagement

This section addresses the hotel’s support of charitable organisations, compliance with accessibility regulations and Global Sustainable Tourism Council certification.

We are looking for:

  • Support for local, national and/or international organizations that benefit the environment and/or community
  • Compliance with accessibility laws
  • Certification by a GSTC-accredited body
  • Contribution to responsible tourism program

Fitness Center & Spa

Pool & Beach

This section covers standards related to the pool area, including eliminating plastic, limiting towel usage, sustainable sun products and supporting environmental causes.


Key Points:

  • Plastic should not be used for drinkware
  • Excessive towel usage should be avoided
  • Sun Products should be non-toxic and reef-safe
  • The Property should support environmental causes

Fitness Centre & Spa

This section covers standards related to the fitness centre and spa, including eliminating plastic and using refillable amenity dispensers:


Key Points:

  • No Single use plastic is used
  • Water is provided in refillable dispenser or from a filtered water system
  • Amenities are in refillable dispensers

Application Process

Created in collaboration with highly respected hotelier Hervé Houdré, an industry leader in sustainability, the program provides a global standard designed specifically for luxury hotels to complement the expectations of discerning clientele. 


Upon completion, your Responsible Hospitality badge serves as trusted third-party sustainability recognition sought after by guests and travel advisors, including the global network of FTG-endorsed travel agencies that are committed to promoting Star-Rated hotels.