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When is a hotel like an esky?

15 July, 2021

The first sign of something different about the M Suites in Tynte Street is the expansive green-wall integrated into the façade. But it is not until you step inside and hear the owner’s ‘esky’ analogy that the building’s eco-credentials become clear.

We are always excited to share the environmental steps our Carbon Neutral Adelaide partners are taking to put less carbon into the atmosphere. In May 2021, partners toured the Majestic M Suites in Tynte Street with owner John Culshaw of Culshaw Group explaining the advanced systems running this hotel.

John Culshaw describes himself as an ‘engineer who ended up in hotels.’ It is clear his technical skills have proven an asset in the innovative smart energy features that make the M Suites perform so well for people, planet and profits.

The internal climate feels comfortable to be in. There is a noticeable absence of drafts and the air temperature is consistent from ceiling to floor. John uses the analogy of an esky to describe his approach to managing air quality and internal climate without using a lot of electricity.

“My approach in designing this hotel was managing the insulation qualities. If you get an esky to the right temperate and keep it there, you don’t get the stratification of temperature and you don’t need to worry so much about power consumption,” said John.

“The hotel is highly insulated from underneath in the carpark with high density foil clad insulation. The roof while incorporating a high level of thermal insulation also has an additional layer of acoustic insulation which results in a very high R-value. We custom-designed the building to have double glazing on all external windows.” he said.

The guest apartment corridors are controlled by a climate-wizard inverter evaporative system (CW-80) which has a very high cooling efficiency. The smart design decisions means that on mild days, the cooling can run on just 1 or 2 kilowatts (kW), the power required to run just ten 100 watt lightbulbs, and on hotter summer days it will use just 12 – 14 kW to run. Surprisingly, the air-conditioning can even be switched off under a range of weather conditions. This also makes the hotel exceptionally quiet.

Air doesn’t flow between suites and public areas. In suites, a lockdown door system and dedicated inverter air conditioning unit creates a fresh exchange with the air outside. In public areas, air flows out through louvers at the end of corridors. During a COVID restriction period, this gave the hotel an edge as the place of choice for top tennis players during Australian Open quarantine requirements. Day to day, little energy is used and lost, contributing to low power use and an overall comfortable feel.

John says the focus was on leveraging the latest technology to the max. “We tried really hard to embrace current technologies and take them to the max. When you start from scratch and have a coordinated approach, you can achieve a lot.”

The M Suites is a great example of how a new development can be both high-end and carry strong environmental credentials. When efficiency is founded on the principles of good design – the esky analogy in this case – buildings can require less power to deliver cost-savings for owners and reduce impact on our environment.

Learn more about our Carbon Neutral Partnerships Program.

Read Part 2 of this story.

Msuites Climate Wizard Rs

Climate Wizard evaporative air conditioning

M Suites Guest Room Vert Rs

A typical guest room at Majestic M Suites featuring double glazed windows

Msuites 07 Presentation Mc

Presentation to Carbon Neutral Adelaide Partners

M Suites Foyer Rs

Corridors have separate air flow to the rooms