Training the Crème De La Crème: EHL Hospitality Business School
Founded in 1893, EHL Hospitality Business School, formally known as Ecole Hôtelière de Lausanne, is globally renowned for training the very best in the hospitality industry. Recognised for its innovative approach to education, the school offers a range of academic programmes and accreditations that educate individuals to provide a 5* service throughout their careers.
In much the same way, PrivatSea takes pride in providing and upholding the highest standards of service; our Chairman Stavros Xenakis and our Hotel Operation and Executive Services Department Supervisor Ariana Konidis are both graduates of EHL, benefitting from the exceptional education offered. Mr Xenakis believes his education at the school has been foundational to his success in this career as, as he describes, “a yacht is like a hotel on water,” and this education has influenced PrivatSea’s exceptional standards upheld today.
EHL Hospitality Business School’s Educational Programmes
EHL offers a range of educational and professional training programmes from hospitality business degrees to hotel management courses. Catering for students of different ages and backgrounds, budding professionals can choose from pre-university courses, Bachelor’s, Master’s and MBA degrees, and short courses and online programmes – both in Lausanne home, where it was founded, and in Singapore.
Students are taught the art of wine tasting
Amongst the programmes offered at EHL is its Bachelor of Science HES-SO in Hospitality Management. The dual-excellence approach prepares students to launch and lead businesses, teaching key skills in hospitality and management expertise to prepare students to integrate into the sector. Leading experts in the sector from around the globe influence and mentor throughout the programme to offer rich, experience-based knowledge. The course prepares students with practical training to: manage a business, provide Michelin-Star experiences, develop leadership skills and creativity, and gain experience through research and development projects and internships. The four-year programme is on offer in Switzerland and Singapore.
Among the vital learnings gained during her studies at the school, Ariana fondly recalls: “Integrity, positivity and respect for others, as well as respect for oneself, are the first values I was taught at the EHL. To serve others and provide happiness, you must first feel good about yourself and be a happy individual. I always try to implement these values into my work and life in general.”
From Lausanne to Singapore
From its humble beginning in 1893, where the first classes were held at Hôtel d’Angleterre in Lausanne by founder Jacques Tschumi, EHL has thrived in an ever-changing world to provide a workforce of highly trained professionals to the hospitality industry, now around the globe. In 2018, EHL joined forces with the China Europe International Business School, launching a unique EMBA in Hospitality and bringing the world-renowned training to Shanghai and other cities in the Asia Pacific region. Following this success, EHL opened its first Asia-Pacific region campus in Singapore in 2020, which offers the Bachelor in International Hospitality Management programme.
“The school has developed an immersive and hybrid educational model, combining practical experience and theoretical lessons,” Ariana expressed when discussing the value offered by her education. “We could switch from cooking classes and oenology lessons to finance and everything in between. We were taught that to be a good manager, you need to know all aspects of the hotel business from housekeeping and Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) procedures through to managerial positions.”
Similarly, Stavros fondly recalls his time at the school, explaining that, “Learning the quintessential elements for providing exceptional services amongst like-minded individuals was an invaluable experience and has ingrained key skills that have allowed us to scale PrivatSea while retaining the personal touches our clients value us for.”
Expanding on the high standards implemented throughout her education, Ariana expressed, “The dress code is strict business wear and time management is a must, arriving late is unacceptable! EHL for me was a school of life in a unique environment that gave me memories and friendships that will last a lifetime!”
The EHL campus in Singapore
Berceau des Sens, EHL’s training restaurant
A Night of Fine Dining: EHL’s Michelin-Starred Restaurant
Berceau des Sens opened its doors in 2011, offering public and private fine-dining experiences as EHL’s training restaurant. Budding students develop fundamental skills while serving exquisite meals at this Michelin-Starred restaurant – a recognition received in 2019, making Berceau des Sens the first student training restaurant to receive the reward.
Arianna attributes the work environment at EHL for her success in transitioning into the working world, explaining, “From the beginning of our studies we were immersed in the working world. The campus is run like a hotel and the students from years one to four are involved in the different departments – housekeeping, bartender, kitchen staff and service. In addition to the school being run like a business, there are six restaurants and two bars onsite, all run by the students with the help of their teachers, with Berceau des Sens restaurant open to the public. The two internships during my studies helped me implement my classroom learnings in the real world. Combining these experiences gave me a sense of responsibility and an understanding of the importance of good teamwork, leadership skills, and attention to detail at an early age which are, I think, the most important components to becoming a good hotelier!”
An Unparalleled Education for a Career in Yacht Hotel Management
The unwavering attention to detail and holistic education puts EHL in a prime position for preparing individuals for a successful career in the hospitality industry, including those in the yacht management industry. With so many directly transferable skills, along with a honed attitude to provide only the best, graduates will be prepared to serve in a variety of positions on mega yachts and uphold the highest of standards.
Ariana confirmed, “The variety of subjects and the learning process of switching from practice to theory has helped a lot in my career at PrivatSea. It instilled the skill of flexibility to be able to handle various responsibilities from budget preparation to procurement of the best quality products, to marketing, crew selection and interior design. The mega yacht industry has grown significantly since I started in the business, and I see clients becoming more and more demanding of excellency. Fortunately, my education taught me to provide only the very best!”
“There is no doubt that my education paved the way to a successful career in the yachting world,” Stavros exclaimed, “by teaching me to consider every aspect in order to provide the very best service no matter how great or small the task at hand. I have managed my team with high standards, instilling the same expectations in them as the school did in me, and this has enabled me to impart my wisdom throughout PrivatSea’s personnel and our processes.”
Chef Cédric Bourassin