Groupe Barrière has been recognised with the ISO 20121 international certification


A first for a French hotel group, Groupe Barrière has made pivotal progress in the implementation of its «Planète Barrière» strategy by being awarded the ISO 20121 international certification. An endorsement of its CSR initiative and sustainable events approach, this certification – issued by AFNOR Certification (French association for standardisation) – is proof of the commitment taken by the group’s establishments and events catering service with regards the sustainable and environmentally friendly management of its events business (seminars, events, and shows). Valid for three years, the certification requires the establishments in question* to demonstrate their continuing commitments every year.

Highlighting the commitment pledged by Barrière’s  ISO 20121 certified establishments


The ISO 20121 international certification – obtained after an independent audit – allows the group to ensure that the events and shows organised by their establishments are sustainable, in accordance with initiatives aimed to reduce their impact on the environment. By following the standard’s requirements, and by implementing a sustainable event management system, the certified establishments have been able to reduce their impact on the environment, optimise resources, and minimise waste.


In concrete terms, each certified establishment commits to the following:


  • Encouraging greener transport solutions : All Barrière’s certified destinations are accessible by TGV high-speed train and offer greener transport solutions, such as the loan of bicycles and charging stations for electric vehicles.


  • Strengthening its circular economy approach : This includes waste recycling using appropriate recycling systems (waste sorting in seminar rooms, bio-waste management etc.), waste reduction, water fountains, carrying out actions to raise awareness about fighting food waste (staff challenges, site visits etc.), as well as very limited use of single-use goods (replacing plastic cups and bottles with more ethical options).


  • Promoting an energy-saving policy: An energy-conserving approach is put in place by means of energy audits carried out on the relevant sites, and follow-up action plans. With access to good practice guides, all the teams are involved and committed to a continuous improvement approach. Energy use is centralised, monitored, and analysed via a dedicated platform, to optimise the establishments’ energy performance. Finally, renewable energy comprises 50% of the group’s energy supply.


  • Showcasing the local area : Establishments are required to carry out at least one sustainable activity in conjunction with a partner agency, and/or a local activity. As an example, Resort Barrière La Baule invites its guests to take part in water-based activities and explore the salt marshes on E-Solex electric bikes. Locally sourced menus are also available, strengthening regional anchoring through partnerships with local producers, as well as highlighting local crafts - to be used as welcome gifts for example.


  • Fostering a solidarity approach : Each establishment works in conjunction with organisations that promote solidarity. All the group’s hotels have partnered up with the UNISOAP association, to whom they donate their used soaps. This sustainable and socially responsible initiative aims to fight waste and improve hygiene levels throughout the world. Almost 4 tonnes of soap have been collected, melted down and recycled since the launch of the partnership in 2018. Another example of solidarity is Barrière’s partnership with the Café Joyeux association; the group’s establishments have already offered almost 78,900 cups of coffee to its guests.




Adopting a sustainable approach, one of the group’s longstanding commitments


Groupe Barrière has been committed to reducing its environmental impact for several years now. In 2020, it launched an ethical and sustainable events approach, setting up a steering committee comprised of many operational stakeholders and members of the business support division. Co-creating a strategy that was rolled out from 2021 through the sustainable MICE charter, each signatory establishment is committed to respecting its principles and to fulfilling the accompanying action plan. Individual training sessions were provided to ensure correct implementation of the charter, with each of the signatory establishments able to implement the approach, considering their specific local characteristics.

Sustainable and Innovative Destinations


Barrière’s ISO 20121 international certification complements the Sustainable and Innovative Destination label awarded to the towns of Deauville, Cannes and La Baule – where the group has a strong presence. The label highlights the work the towns put into organising sustainable conferences and seminars, as well as into developing sustainable tourism, of which Barrière is a «committed partner».


We are very proud to have been awarded the ISO 20121 certification, which reinforces and endorses our Planète Barrière CSR strategy. Far more than a certification, this standard also rewards the commitment of the 6,500 men and women who passionately strive to achieve excellence in the sustainable customer experience that they create. Committed to a long-term social and environmental approach since 2010, Barrière acts daily to support and contribute to the world of tourism and leisure of the future. We are already looking forward to the next steps and intend to continue our efforts.Explains Agnès Lahana - Groupe Barrière’s CSR Director. 


Obtaining the ISO 20121 standard is the fruit of a close collaborative process between Groupe Barrière’s different departments and our customers. It’s the logical continuation of an internal strategy that has been in place since 2021, with the Sustainable MICE Charter that was signed by all the establishments involved. This certification is of special importance to our professional customers who require tremendous commitment for their events organisation. It renders our French Barrière properties unmissable tourism destinations for business travel and shows.” adds Carine Le Saux - Groupe Barrière’s Sales Director for France.