IHG Hotels & Resorts, one of the world’s leading hospitality companies, is proud to introduce voco Zeal Exeter Science Park in partnership with Zeal Hotels – the first lifecycle net zero carbon hotel for both businesses.

This follows the signing of a landmark exclusivity agreement between IHG and Zeal, which was revealed at the International Hotel Investment Forum (IHIF) in Berlin in May.

voco Zeal Exeter Science Park 

Scheduled to open in 2024, voco Zeal Exeter Science Park has been designed to align with the Net Zero Carbon Buildings Framework Definition of the UK Green Building Council – the membership-led industry network.

With more than 6,000 properties in over 100 countries, IHG is committed to supporting hotel owners to decarbonise and futureproof their assets – while generating profits – to protect the long-term value of their business and reduce their impact on the environment.

Karin Sheppard, SVP Managing Director, Europe, IHG Hotels & Resorts, said: “I’m delighted that voco Zeal Exeter Science Park will be IHG’s first lifecycle net zero carbon hotel. This outstanding property in a beautiful part of southwest England perfectly illustrates the commitment of IHG and Zeal to doing business responsibly and will provide our guests with a place to stay that matches their own expectations around sustainability.”

“This agreement with Zeal follows a flurry of recent signings for IHG in the UK, and I’m excited to see the progress we’re continuing to make with our Journey to Tomorrow 10-year responsible business plan. It also marks another milestone for conversion-friendly brand voco, which is our quickest-growing brand globally and proving a popular choice for owners around the world.”

Tim Wheeldon, Managing Director, Zeal Hotels, said: “We are proud to be partnering with IHG on this very important project for both our businesses and the world around us. We have a vision for Zeal Hotels and we’re looking forward to turning this into reality with IHG and the voco Zeal Exeter Science Park when we open our doors to guests in 2024.

“At Zeal and IHG we want to play our part in creating a sustainable future. As we work together on this project, we are sharing our knowledge to help move our industry forwards.”

Signed under a franchise agreement and set to be managed by Valor Hospitality, the 142-key hotel will be situated in the picturesque southwest English city of Exeter and offer leisure and business guests facilities including a restaurant, bar, gym, gardens, meeting space and numerous car charging points.

voco Zeal Exeter Science Park will be located adjacent to J29 of the M5 motorway, just a five-minute drive from Exeter Airport. It will be situated at the heart of Exeter Science Park which, once fully developed, will be home to around 822,000 sq ft of buildings for science, technology, engineering, mathematics and medicine (STEMM) businesses.

IHG’s Journey to Tomorrow 10-year responsible business plan is aligned to the 17 Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations. Through its commitment to care for its people, communities and planet, IHG is taking steps to define and deliver an ambitious carbon emissions strategy.

As one of the world’s leading hotel groups, IHG recognises its responsibility to reduce its carbon emissions and has a science-based target in line with a 1.5C future as part of an international effort to curb global warming. In support of this, targeting all of its new-build hotels to operate at very low carbon emissions by 2030 is an important part of the company’s sustainable growth strategy.

The global expansion of voco hotels has happened at a faster pace than any other of its premium brands, with 46* open hotels around the world and 59* properties in its pipeline**. There are voco hotels open in 18 countries* and its pipeline includes the first voco hotels in Poland, Malta and Cyprus. In 2022, IHG also announced the launch of the brand in Belgium with voco Brussels City North and partners Living Tomorrow, set to open this year.

Recognising its appeal to guests, voco was recognised as the World’s Leading Premium Hotel Brand at the 2022 World Travel Awards.