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BottleHood's glassware keeps jobs local, landfills open

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Looking to do something about the billions of bottles a year that end up in California's landfills, while simultaneously creating jobs and stimulating the local economy, BottleHood was born.

The San Diego-based bottleware manufacturer produces a line of handcrafted glassware made from reused beer, wine and liquor bottles.

Headed-up by cofounder Leslie Tiano, local artist and eco-activist, and startup executive Steve Cherry, BottleHood has taken a stand on keeping jobs in the neighborhood and bottles out of the landfill. All of the "natural resources" required to produce BottleHood's line of glassware -- bottles destined for a local landfill -- are rescued by the company from neighborhood restaurants, bars and wine tasting events.

BottleHood works with local crafts people, who share a concern for the environment and the economy, to produce a line of handcrafted glass housewares. To complete the cycle, the company sells the glassware back to some of the very same restaurants that provided the bottles. In turn, the restaurants offer the glassware back to the clients that consumed the beverages.

For more information visit bottlehood.com.

The next time you're craving a "5 dollar foot long" from Subway, you can just text message your order directly to Subway. Using Zingle, an all-new text messaging order system for retail establishments, the sandwich chain is launching a market-wide test program at more than 30 San Diego, Los Angeles, Santa Barbara and Bakersfield Subway restaurants next week.

The campaign follows a successful run at some outlets, where more than 90 percent of customers queried expect to frequent the restaurant more often because of the text ordering system's convenience.

In the Subway trial, each restaurant will be provided a small text-message ordering machine with a unique 10-digit text message ordering number. Individuals can then text in their order, which will be received in less than one minute by the store. An automatic confirmation message, customized by every outlet, is then sent back to the customer informing them how long until their food is ready. When the customer walks in, the store has their order already prepared. The Zingle system also enables retail outlets to send promotional text messages to opt-in subscribers if desired.

"Studies have shown that the average U.S. mobile phone subscriber sends and receives more text messages than voice calls. It's primarily the way many individuals are communicating with others," said Ford Blakely, founder and CEO of Zingle. "The problem is that until now, even if companies send promotional messages to a person's cell phone, they force them to get in line, stay on hold, or log onto a Web site. The Zingle service is a convenient and cost-effective way for outlets like Subway to take care of customers better and more often in a manner that they want."

Hyatt Hotels Corp. announced Andaz San Diego will debut Feb. 1 in the property currently known as the Ivy Hotel. Hyatt will operate the hotel under a management agreement with Kelly Capital, the property's owner.

The property originally opened as the Maryland Hotel in 1914 to host dignitaries for the Panama-California Exposition. Following extensive renovations and upgrades, it was re-opened in May 2007 and transformed by owner Michael Kelly of Kelly Capital. Incorporating the brand qualities of Hyatt's newest brand, Andaz San Diego will be "vibrant yet relaxed and will reflect the cultural scene and spirit of the surrounding neighborhood," according to a press release.

Speaking of Hyatt, San Diego's Blue Marble Spa at the Hyatt Regency Mission Bay Spa and Marina, was named one of the "Top 10 Green Spas and Resorts" in the world by OrganicSpa, a sustainable lifestyle magazine.

All of their treatments use organic and natural skincare products and ingredients and the venue, constructed to support both guests and the environment, features energy efficient light bulbs, floors of sustainable bamboo, LEED-certified low-flow shower heads and eco-friendly cleaning products. Blue Marble also incorporates a range of conservation principles such as offering its treatment menu in a digital format, using recycled paper and spa linens that are dyed with a green processes.

Starting Wednesday, Jan. 20, once a month for the next three months, Anthology San Diego will devote a night and its menu to a great craft brewery.

On the premiere night, the first "draft" of this pairing will feature the beers of Airdale Brewery, the food of Anthology chef Eric Bauer and the music of The Long Run, an Eagles tribute band.

Plus, Master Brewer Dave Lusk and chef Bauer will be roaming the room for conversations with food and craft beer fans. Reservations are recommended.

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