Suzann Heinemann

Founder and CEO of InfraCert GmbH


Suzann Heinemann has more than 25 years of experience in the hotel industry as a founder and managing director, in hotel development and in consulting, in particular for strategic marketing and sales projects. She was co-owner of a conference-focused hotel for many years before founding and managing Gronowsky & Co. Hotel Consulting GmbH and GreenLine Hotels. At Gronowsky & Co. Hotel Consulting she is responsible for the planning and implementation of various projects with well-known clients of the hotel industry. In 2001 she founded the hotel cooperation GreenLine Hotels with seven hotels. With over 140 hotels, GreenLine is one of the leading hotel groups for small and medium-sized individual hotels. Her lived-out vision of sustainable hotel and brand management is stringently implemented at GreenLine Hotels: in 2014, she introduced the first and only marketing cooperation to introduce an integrated sustainability system across all stages of the value chain. In 2015 she foundet InfraCert – Institute for Sustainable Development in the hotel industry. InfraCert is an institute dedicated to practical research and development in the area of sustainable businesses, especially of accommodation businesses and tourism destinations. They certify hotels for sustainability and corporate citizenship and additionally support an interdisciplinary exchange with science, hotel stakeholders and partners of the hotel and tourism industry. They have designed an efficient testing system and the sustainability label GreenSign based on a scientific and practical background and according to international framework. GreenSign is an established label with an independent and high-ranking advisory board functions as a controlling and advising instance during the process of certification. Since 2015, Suzann Heinemann is the owner of the Schlosshotel Blankenburg, which is characterized by a sustainable hotel management. She is author and speaker in the field of marketing and sales as well as sustainability in the hotel industry.

Insights by Suzann Heinemann (5)

Hygiene and Sustainability: How to make both work?

Whilst we are seeing an increase in some types of SUP due to COVID-19 (hopefully temporarily), we are also suggesting to accommodation providers that this is a great time to break some old habits, particularly around hotel room amenities.

COVID-19: A stress test for sustainable development in hospitality?

While people are still struggling to survive, some theorists say, they do not think of the common good. Yet what this crisis has shown (for some surprisingly for some not), is that this is not by definition true.

Sustainability Gives Hotels An Edge In The War For Talent. Or Does It?

This is a great question and one closely linked to our recent Sustainability Leaders Project panel question - whether sustainable tourism leads to more and better jobs. The panel's conclusion was that there is a notable relationship between sustainable tourism and jobs, mostly in terms of staff retention (because of more caring, fairer workplaces and a stronger sense of commitment and shared values).

How can sustainability be communicated beyond clichés and greenwashing?

To avoid falling into the „greenwashing trap” business need to be transparent, honest and modest. Since “greening” is not the core business of most tour-operators, hotels or resorts, investing in the wrong project or a poor strategy might turn into a slippery slope to reputation damage.

Who makes hospitality sustainability happen: Governments, Industry, Consumers?

Findings from research that we conducted in the Netherlands suggest that guests are increasing willing to support or even push for sustainability. However, they also argue that hosts should take responsibility first.