Holiday apartments in Ruka are heated in a carbon neutral manner
Snow is a vital lifeline for ski resorts. Action against the effects of global warming means a lot to the ski centers and their customers. Rukakeskus has already reduced its carbon dioxide emissions by 80 percent over the past decade. The local accommodation entrepreneurs are taking the same line. The MastonAitio real estate company updated its heating system to be energy efficient with the OptiWatti smart system.
The goal for Rukakeskus is to be carbon neutral by 2020. The holiday apartments on Ruka’s eastern slopes are already carbon neutral. This is achieved by using green electricity and saving energy through the OptiWatti smart system, says the real estate manager of Rukakeskus Ltd. Mikko Hänninen.
Heating was updated to be energy efficient
– We tested OptiWatti’s control system in the early spring in one apartment for two months, and the experience convinced us. We installed electricity consumption measurement devices in two similar apartments, one used OptiWatti and the other did not. The test period showed that heating costs can easily be cut more than a third, says Mikko Hänninen.
In September, the old heating system of the MastonAitio 26 semi-detached dwellings was updated to be energy efficient with OptiWatti. The wireless system was quickly installed, and after installation, savings have accumulated nicely. This means significant savings on an annual basis.
Room-specific heating optimization
OptiWatti works so that when the apartment is empty, the temperature drops to 16 degrees. When the dwelling is occupied, the room temperature rises to 21-22 degrees.
– Through the web browser and app, the system is easy to use remotely anywhere. In our experience, the system maintains accurately set temperatures. In the next step we will add OptiWatti to our booking system, whereby temperature changes will be handled automatically,” says Mikko Hänninen.
No empty apartments and no unnecessary heating
Ruka is favoring the so-called hot bed concept, such as can be found in the MastonAitio Ski-Inn apartments. The apartments are privately owned, but they have a rental obligation when they are not being used by the owners.
– Environmental values are everything to us at Ruka. Of course the owners of the apartments are also happy about the savings in heating costs and management charges and the development of the value of smart property, notes Mikko Hänninen.
The Rukakeskus Corporation is one of Finland’s leading tourism companies and the market leader in the ski center industry with an almost 20% share of ski pass sales. The companies operate in the Ruka and Pyhä increasingly international year-round tourism centers. In addition to the slope business, the company also operates Ruka and Pyhä accommodation, rental and shop businesses. Rukakeskus Ltd.’s turnover is approximately EUR 26 million and it employs around 200 people. Rukakeskus subsidiary, Ski-Inn Hotels & Apartments Ltd., rents and maintains Ski-Inn apartments in Ruka and Pyhä.
OptiWatti is a domestic growth company founded in 2013 which designs easy-to-use solutions for energy conservation and management. At the same time, the company improves convenience of property use and management for the owners. By saving electricity, OptiWatti helps to combat climate change.