Clarion Hotel goes solar
Allison Hurtado/AFN

The Clarion Hotel in Ahwatukee Foothills is doing its part to become more sustainable by relying completely on the sun.

"We want to do our part to conserve resources because we're using them up like gangbusters," General Manager James Evanoff said. "It's also savings for us. We have 360 days of sunshine, why not use them?"

Evanoff plans to put about 100 solar panels on the roof of the hotel along with a huge generator to help store the power. The hotel's electricity and water heating will be completely solar. Anything left over will go back to Salt River Project's grid to be shared.

"There are several businesses that have done this," Evanoff said. "We were thinking about it for a long time. In the hotel business we consume a lot of electricity. We need gas to heat all of the water that we use. We just wanted to conserve, save and help the planet and do our part."

Installation of the panels is expected to begin in the middle of June and Evanoff said it may take three or four weeks to complete.

Once it is completed the hotel will be able to store more than 320,000 gallons of hot water, which is more than enough to heat every shower in their 200-room hotel on a busy weekend.

"We're going to be totally independent of all of these resources that we need," Evanoff said. "Hopefully, other business will follow suit and do what we're doing. We're excited about it. It's a big project."

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