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Famous Greenies Flocking to LEED-Certified Idaho Hotel

Richard Levangie | Wednesday April 1st, 2009 | 0 Comments



The good folks in Bugtussle, Idaho have a green accomplishment that is turning a few heads in trendy California – a certified LEED Double Platinum, carbon-negative luxury hotel that has become a home away from home for many celebrity greenies, including Richard Branson, Al Gore, Neil Young, and Gavin Newsom.
It’s an inspiring story. About one year ago, the flea-bitten Palace Motel was a 42-room roadside inn that catered to truck drivers swinging down from Alberta, and to locals looking for a quick howdy-do in the broom-closet sized rooms.

But with the recession, and declining revenues, Palace owner Dwight Inahofe – yes, the nephew of that Inhofe – started to lose money hand-over-fist. All that red ink turned Inhofe into a card-carrying environmentalist, angering his famous uncle, but saving his business – and the town of Bugtussle.
With green funding from Uncle Sam, the Palace Motel has been recreated with R2000 insulation, 5,000 solar panels, a handful of wind turbines, and geothermal power plant. And then Inhofe chose to gild the lily, adding a fine restaurant serving ethically-caught sushi, a premium selection of organic wines, a European spa, and a yoga studio. Not only has Inhofe managed to turn a profit, he powers the whole town of Bugtussle with excess energy from his new, carbon negative hotel.
As a final touch, the old Palace has been renamed the Bugtussle Built-More. And the greenies have been lining up ever since.
“My uncle James ain’t too happy with me, what with proving sustainable practices actually make good business sense,” Dwight Inhofe told Triple Pundit, “but I really don’t care. I’ve seen the light, and I guess you could say that it’s a green light.”


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