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Glion Institute of Higher Education Spotlights Hospitality forward-thinking leadership & Business strategies at Excellence by Vendôm 2024

  • Glion Institute of Higher Education

Paris, France – March 18, 2024


Glion Institute of Higher Education (GIHE), renowned for pioneering hospitality and luxury education, proudly marked its presence at the esteemed Excellence by Vendôm event on the 12th of March 2024, at Hotel le Marois in Paris. This distinguished gathering brought together the luxury industry's leading minds for discussions presented by the institute, iconic member of Sommet Education. The conversations delved into the transformative dynamics of luxury, offering innovative insights and forward-thinking strategies for navigating the industry's evolving landscape.


The event kicked off with the "Yes, she can: women luxury leaders" conference, where Maud Bailly, CEO of Sofitel, MGallery & Emblems, alongside Marie Sermadiras (CEO of Cosfibel) and Anne-Charlotte Bellanger (CEO of Delcourt Collection & Collection Particulière) shared their compelling vision on women leadership. As CEOs they emphasized the essence of alignment, confidence, authenticity, and modesty in leadership. This united message showcased that success intertwines with passion, emotional intelligence and grit. "My philosophy is clearly to hire smarter. At the end of the day, you (Ed. the CEO) are the glue, you are the pivot, you are the backbone allowing the Maison to be strong and to grow" Mrs. Bailly remarked, underscoring the pivotal role of CEOs within a company culture. Marie Sermadiras added, "The job is about creating the harmony in the team and being the leader, the one sharing the vision and being the one helping when there is a problem" emphasizing the importance of unity and support within the team. Anne-Charlotte Bellanger contributed, "What I’ve learned is to listen more and more to the people, to the market, and from there starting to put a vision on the table" highlighting the value of listening and adaptability in shaping a successful vision.

In the subsequent panel, "Loving and being loved: the new paradigms of luxury service" Alexis de La Palme (Chairman of the Management Board Edmond de Rothschild Heritage) member of the Governing Board of GIHE and Alumni of the Institution, Christophe Wygas (Chief Commercial Officer Montblanc), and François-Henry Bennahmias, President of Excellence by Vendôm's Sponsorship Committee, illuminated recent shifts in consumer expectations of luxury service. Reflecting on the evolving landscape, François-Henry Bennahmias remarked: "Love starts with your own people. You have to develop a culture that obviously will allow them to understand what a brand stands for, and hopefully, they will be able to then bring that message, bring those emotions, bring the love to the outside." emphasizing the foundational role of internal culture in external brand perception and consumer relationship. Alexis de La Palme underscored the importance of emotional engagement by stating "For me the empathy is part of earning customer love, but not only customer love, employee love also" highlighting the core aspect of luxury service. Christophe Wygas added, "You need to be authentic; you need to stick to who you are and not pretend to be somebody you’re not" stressing the importance of authenticity in connecting with clients.

The afternoon's "Luxury: cherishing our past, shaping our future" session featured discussions on how luxury brands can honor their history while embracing the necessity for innovation. Fabienne Lupo, Member of the Academic Council at HEAD – Genève, University of Art and Design and Founder and CEO of Reluxury Event but also member of the Governing Board of GIHE, shared her insights on balancing tradition with modernity, paving the way for luxury brands to remain relevant in an ever-changing world. She was joined in that discussion by Véronique Beaumont Tordjmann, General Manager and COO of ESMOD, and Marie-Ann Wachtmeister, Co-founder and Creative Director of Courbet.


The day concluded with the "How luxury is responding to generational change & digital upheaval" panel, where Antoine Ménard, Chief Creative Officer of Paris Society, Marie-Pierre Morelle (Director of Travel Trade Europe of The Leading Hotels of the World) and Fabrice Gautron (Global Senior Advisor in the Luxury Sector) discussed strategies for adapting to generational shifts and technological advancements without compromising the luxury sector's core values of exclusivity and excellence.


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Excellence by Vendôm has proven itself as a critical platform for discussing the future of the luxury industry. Glion's contribution to these vital conversations highlights our commitment to educating the next wave of industry leaders. The insights shared today not only resonate with the current state of the luxury sector but also illuminate the path forward.

Frédéric Picard

Glion’s participation in Excellence by Vendôm underscores its commitment to leading the way in luxury and hospitality education. By driving discussions on crucial industry themes, the 62 years old Institute continues to play a pivotal role in preparing students for the dynamic challenges of the luxury sector.


About Glion Institute of Higher Education

Founded in 1962, Glion Institute of Higher Education is a Swiss institution offering bachelor’s, master’s and executive degrees in hospitality, luxury and finance to an international student body across three campuses in Switzerland and London, UK.

Glion is ranked among the world’s top five higher education institutions for hospitality and leisure management. (QS World University Rankings by Subject, 2023).

Part of Sommet Education, worldwide leader in hospitality education, Glion is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE).

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