Percolating sustainable ideas

Discover how the City of Dreams Manila advocates the growth of the local coffee industry, which results in positive community impact

The City of Dreams (COD) Manila has in place a holistic and sustainable approach to every cup of joe that it serves in its hotels and restaurants.

It all starts with sourcing the beans from local farming communities. Working in collaboration with the Philippine Coffee Board, the beans are obtained from different parts of the Philippines, such as Lipa in Batangas, Atok in Benguet, and Bukidnon in Mindanao. And COD Manila is actively exploring other potential sources from Philippines’ other regions to expand its variants and blends.

Sourcing locally and ethically helps COD Manila control the quality and social sustainability of their coffee beans

The coffee beans are then roasted using a state-of-the-art Probat machine – one of few in the country – by a team of skilled baristas at The Roaster Cafe in The Garage VR Zone and Food Park, within COD Manila’s grounds. Their blends are then disseminated to all restaurants operated by the integrated resort.

COD Manila’s chief operating officer, Kevin Benning, explained the objectives behind the coffee programme: “We believe in putting the spotlight on the Philippine coffee industry, whose premium produce can compete with some of the best coffee beans from around the world.

“By supporting local coffee producers and procuring from local small and medium enterprises (SMEs), we are gratified by the opportunity to help boost the economic development of local communities”.

COD Manila’s efforts do not stop there. In fact, nothing goes to waste as used coffee grounds are repurposed and recycled. Gathered daily from the different kitchens and outlets, the grounds are brought to COD Manila’s vermicomposting area to be churned into organic fertilisers.

Around 60kg of used coffee grounds, together with 20kg of fruit and vegetable peelings, and 5kg of eggshells, become organic fertiliser for the greenhouse nursery, garden and ornamental plants sprawled across the 6.2-hectare property.

And instead of ending up in landfills, used Nespresso coffee capsules from the rooms of COD Manila’s three hotels – Nobu, Hyatt Regency and Nuwa – are turned over to a recycling partner to be mixed with other recycled aluminium before being transformed into raw materials again.

Some used coffee capsules are also given new life at the Negrense Volunteers for Change (NVC) Foundation. Artisans upcycle the capsules, and create items like trinkets and ornaments which are then sold at bazaars and fairs. Profits benefit the artisans and the communities supported by the NVC foundation.

Meanwhile, coffee grounds from the used Nespresso capsules are turned over to local farmers, which serve as natural compost in lieu of chemical fertilisers and pesticides.
Benning explained that these wide-reaching efforts help to “lessen our impact on the environment and conversely, strengthen our initiatives to practice responsible and sustainable procurement”.

“That we would generate some savings in the process is an added benefit, though it is secondary to our main objective to promote sustainability in our operations and be an agent to propel the growth of SMEs,” he added.

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