Hotels Host Bees As Honored Guests
The Christian Science Monitor Weekly|April 16, 2018

In San Francisco, hotels find beekeeping to be good for business – and community.

Bailey Bischoff

At the Fairmont San Francisco, the well-heeled visitors arriv-ing through the lobby aren’t the five-star hotel’s only guests. On the hotel’s rooftop terrace, above the rush and bustle of San Francisco’s city streets, a fainter hum can be heard – the buzz of bees.

Beekeeper Spencer Marshall pries open a white, wooden box that houses thousands of bees and pulls out a frame that vibrates with life. The hive sits nestled among garden boxes overflowing with lavender and rosemary, a delicate contrast to the jagged skyscrapers that loom in the distance.

Bees have become more commonplace residents at hotels, especially in San Francisco, where 10 hotels maintain terrace or rooftop hives. Urban beekeeping allows hotels to market sustainability, harvest honey, and raise awareness about the challenges bees face. Rooftop apiaries have been popping up across the United States in the past decade, from San Francisco to Chicago to New York.

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