Preserving Punta Cana One Straw at a Time
By Tim Cotroneo
You would think that the Westin Puntacana’s decision to say no to plastic straws flies in the face of a better bottom line. The truth is, the ownership, staff and hotel guests see this action as another positive chapter to the resort’s long running commitment toward a cleaner environment.
Over 45 years ago, Puntacana Resort & Club began practicing sustainable development before the term even existed. Preserving their pristine ocean, beaches, and overall ecosystem has long been a Puntacana Resort cornerstone. Pushing back against plastic’s negative impact on the thing that Punta Cana guests love most, makes this resort’s decision to grasp more eco-sensitive alternatives a long-term business slam dunk.
One of the sweet environmental ideas that the Puntacana Resort’s food and beverage team decided on is including a candy straw with select cocktails. In fact, each of the Puntacana Resort’s bars now offer lemon and lime candy straws in their Crafted by Westin custom libations.
No Straws Please
An employee at the forefront of Puntacana Resort & Club’s efforts to do the right thing is Bar Captain Carlos. Benoit. For the past two years Benoit has been creating original cocktails for resort guests that not only feature homegrown ingredients, they also promote the local environment.
For starters, each bar at the Puntacana Resort & Club holds a green sign that declares, “No Straw Please.” Along with the thought-provoking title that encourages guests to consider a straw-less drink, the sign reveals a listing of facts on how seabirds, turtles, dolphins, and fish are negatively impacted by discarded plastic.
As for the candy straws, they provide a flavorful option for sipping original drinks like the Lychee Mojito, the Midnight Cocktail, homemade Sangria, and the Floral Margarita. Guests choosing the Floral Margarita can expect a refreshing blend of gold tequila, lavender, rosa, and orange liqueur. Carlos mixes all these ingredients with ice, then shakes and stirs. A guest can request a lime straw for an extra burst of flavor.
Caretakers of the Region
The Puntacana Resort & Club shift from plastic straws is just another building block in the resort’s overall commitment to the environment and community. Since 1994, The Puntacana Foundation has created a school, a church, a coral restoration program, a beekeeping operation, and a thriving program employing 60 women who make beautiful purses from plastic bags.
The Grupo Puntacana parent company’s 2500 employees see themselves as caretakers to the region. Puntacana Resort & Club sustainable efforts have been honored with Conde Nast World Savers Award, as well as the Travel & Leisure Global Vision Award.
Stirring Positive Ingredients
Who knew that you can make a positive contribution to the ecosystem by choosing to stir your next cocktail with a candy straw. At Puntacana Resort & Club, when life gives you lemons and limes, choose something that’s good for you and the environment.