The core of our living building

Bringing our dedication to circularity to life in an innovative greenhouse.

Sunken into the ceiling of the 21st floor – the centrepiece of Juniper & Kin – the QO greenhouse is a living illustration of what circularity can mean in practice. It’s not only a fully functioning greenhouse: it’s a landmark in urban farming for hospitality and the local community.

CIRCULARITY IN ACTION

Our greenhouse is the perfect example of how we envisage a living building. And what it means to make that a reality. By developing a fully functioning, self-sufficient and self-regulating ecosystem, we have created an active approach to circularity that filters through every floor of the QO. It connects the layers of the hotel by growing specialist and distinctive fruits, vegetables, herbs – and even fish – to provide produce that’s enjoyed from Persijn all the way up to Juniper & Kin. And is a vital part of our production.

The footprint of the greenhouse is quite literally replicated in the main atrium of the hotel, mirroring its position on the 21st floor. This huge architectural feature is made from perforated steel, allowing light to filter through. It’s a striking visual reminder that the principles embodied in the greenhouse can be felt throughout your experience.

FISH TO FORK

For a greenhouse to be circular it needs integrated aquaponics as part of the ecosystem. Put simply, this means growing fish and plants together in a mutually beneficial way. The fish waste provides an organic food source for the plants, and the plants purify the water for the fish.

Our fish is a type of tiger bass called omega perch. We chose it because not only does it provide the right kind of fertiliser for our plants, but it’s also a delicious fatty fish that can be prepared in multiple ways. We aim not to waste anything at the QO: so once the fish have lived their natural lifecycle in the tanks, you’ll get to enjoy them on your plate.

SUPER FRESH PRODUCE

Whether you’re eating a Dutch Caprese salad in Persijn or drinking a herb-infused cocktail in Juniper & Kin you can be confident that any produce you’re enjoying from our greenhouse will have been freshly picked that very same day. Our head grower works closely with the QO chefs to ensure he’s growing what they want to cook. The chefs then create menus for the day based on what’s ready for harvest. It’s just another example of how the different parts of the QO work together.

From classic Dutch fare like endives, to some unexpected, more international, produce, we work with the seasons to grow what’s best at that moment. It’s better for you because you’ll be able to visit the greenhouse and see how the plants you’ve just eaten are grown. And it’s better for the planet because we’re consuming what it wants to provide us with.

A PLATFORM FOR INNOVATION

Urban farming and circular greenhouses are not new concepts but their use in hospitality is limited. We want to prove that this approach is not only achievable but also the way of the future for city hotels. Which is why we’ve created this platform for innovation, education, research and development.

What is especially important for us is a greenhouse that’s embedded in the community. We’re aiming for it to be accessible as an educational tool for schoolchildren, alongside being open for tours and tastings for both hotel guests and local visitors.

By improving existing techniques and developing new ones, we’re proving that circularity and urban farming can have a place inside every large-scale hotel. And we’re excited to share that with you.