From savvier consumers to the need for diversity, the next generation of luxury hospitality leaders will deal with challenges that did not exist even a decade ago.

As leaders in luxury hospitality education, Glion is preparing them by asking the big questions – and now we’d love it if you could join us.

Expect an exclusive evening of insight and debate on the issues – and the opportunities – our future leaders will face.

Key learnings from the conference

Luxury defined

“Today, the word luxury is incredibly overused. Therefore, nobody knows what it really is. So it is good to define it in your own context.” Claudia Schwarz

“Luxury for me is more about uniqueness, no matter if it is the product or the experience.” Stéphanie Gellerstad

New luxury consumers

“Brands need to understand who they are dealing with, as seen already. Tomorrow will be too late. China is the key driver, which makes it even more complex.” Dino Auciello

“The Millennials think in a more holistic way: they try to balance and take care of the mind, body and soul. The hospitality establishments will have to be able to interact in these three different levels.” Stephen Alden

“We see more and more diversity in the markets today.” Hannah Pace

The Inclusivity Paradox: should you target everyone?

“You cannot please everyone in luxury, as everyone expects different things. However, I believe that you need to be authentic and unique in your own way. It may not appeal to everybody, but I think that it is important to find your own niche and be successful in that market.” Claudia Schwarze

“Service is a very abused word with a very abused definition, but I would say that it is important to provide a service from the heart, service that is authentic and service that is true and meaningful in order to appeal to a wider audience.” Lars Wagner

Digital trends in luxury industry

“Robots are everywhere, in all industries. The possibilities today with artificial intelligence are endless, and the luxury field is just starting to experience it.” Dino Auciello

“The virtual reality is going to be critical when it comes to starting the experience before even arriving to the hotel. A typical guest stays around 2,5 nights in average in the hotel, so if you can use this technology to give them more knowledge about the hotel and their future stay and make them feel more comfortable when they arrive, I think that you should certainly benefit from it.” Stephen Alden

How do you win the digital game?

  • Digitalisation: Identify what generates business from the short-lived trend
  • Truly understand your audience: client segmentation using cultural/behavior insights is key
  • Test, learn
  • Start today, not tomorrow

“The winning formula starts with embracing a new mindset…” Dino Auciello

Luxury on social media

“Personally, I think that influencers are not that important. There is only a few of them who have that kind of following that will influence your occupancy.” Claudia Schwarze

“Pictures on Instagram, and general presence on social media is something that is important. If you do not have a profound hospitality knowledge, you will need to see a picture that will help you decide where to stay.” Stéphanie Gellerstad

“The online presence of luxury brands is very important when it comes to telling stories.” Suzanne Godfrey

Selecting the future luxury leaders

“When hiring for luxury, the companies need to think about the teams. You need to have a good cognitive balance in the team, which you will get from hiring different people with different personalities. It is about a lot of people working well together – at different moment in time, different people are going to be needed.” Stephen Alden

“We hire by personality and values.” Claudia Schwarze

“Smile goes a long way, no matter in what position you are.” Lars Wagner

Leading a motivated team

“Leadership without visibility does not exist. Visibility is about involvement, and involvement means keeping certain things off and being there with your teams in the good and the bad times.” Lars Wagner

“You have to trust the people to do the job and lead them in a way so that they always want to do the best for you.” Claudia Schwarze

Starting a career in luxury industry

“When looking for a job in luxury industry, it is all about remaining authentic.” Hannah Pace

“Curious, innovate and emphatic – this is what you need to be in order to launch your leadership career in luxury hospitality.” Suzanne Godfrey

“We think that it is important that the young talents actually interview us as a company as well and really know if we are the right match for them or not.” Stephen Alden

Introducing our experts

We’re continually adding more industry leaders and experts from across the world of luxury. Keep checking this page for updates over the next few weeks.

Amanda Kayne
News Anchor at CNN
Money Switzerland

Claudia Schwarze
General Manager
at Aman Venice

Lars Wagner
General Manager
at Mandarin Oriental

Hannah Pace
HR Director
at Richemont

Stephen Alden
CEO at
The Dedica Anthology Milan

Suzanne Godfrey
Head of Luxury Brand
Management in Hospitality
Specialization at Glion

Stéphanie Gellerstad
Student at
Glion Institute of
Higher Education

Dino Auciello
Head of Marketing & Communication at DLG (Digital Luxury Group)


Hotel Mandarin Oriental
Quai Turettini 1
1201 Geneva

About the venue

With a peaceful setting that combines breathtaking mountain backdrops with stunning River Rhône vistas, Mandarin Oriental, Geneva is a five-star hotel with classic Swiss charm. It’s the perfect place to contemplate the future of the luxury hospitality industry.