Sleep & Eat Virtual Announces Conference Keynote Speakers



(10 September 2020) Every year, Sleep & Eat delivers a Conference which combines global insights from design polymaths, perspectives from hospitality industry leaders, inspiration, education and a unique theme to galvanise its audience. This year, the virtual event is presenting a three-day Conference entitled Redefining Freedom which will explore the likely impacts of the pandemic on guest behaviours and lifestyle choices, and the investment, operational and design implications of these. After selected talks, visitors will also be able to ask their own questions directly to the expert speakers, in live speaker Q&As.

The six keynote speakers have been announced. They are:

Tony Chi, Founder of tonychi and Alison Chi, Managing Director and Co-Creative Director of tonychi studio – Designing to Contain the Chaos

Design maverick, Tony Chi, may have first coined the phrase: “Design is the organization of the chaos within” several years ago, but now it has clearly gained a new and pressing meaning. In conversation with Alison Chi, he will argue that before creativity becomes cohesive, it must have free-reign, before a team can harmonise, its members must dive into the asynchronous rhythms of their own expertise and before an interior becomes iconic, its designers will have drawn on inspiration from across time and space. Taking the audience through some of the studio’s most acclaimed projects, the pair will encapsulate the notion of designing to contain the chaos.

Alison Chi, Tony Chi
Alison Chi, Tony Chi

Stefan Leser, CEO of Langham Hospitality Group – Delivering Luxury Hospitality in the Next Normal

With nearly 30 years’ experience in the travel and hospitality industries, Hong Kong based Stefan Leser will share his insights into how a luxury hospitality brand can manage to operate in the current crisis. He will consider what the new learnings have been, how guest expectations have changed, what might be embraced in the future more than ever before – and what may never return.

Stefan Leser
Stefan Leser

Adam D. Tihany, Founder, Tihany Design – Designer as Problem Solver

Adam D. Tihany has been solving problems through design for world-renowned chefs, hoteliers and restaurateurs creating spaces of wonder and awe that not only enlighten but also transcend. The world is currently facing a problem of immeasurable scale. What can designers and design do it uplift and soothe? Adam D. Tihany will offer his views as he looks back on his ground-breaking career to pave a way for a more hopeful future.

Adam Tihany
Adam D. Tihany

Lauren Rottet, Founding Principal of Rottet Studio – Clean Design

As we move forward, we may speak about different levels of clean – clean, really clean and the perception of clean. In her keynote, Lauren Rottet, one of the most celebrated interior architects of our time, will explore how to create for the future, now. Digging deep into her understanding of her craft, she will seek to find answers to the meaning of clean, how they will manifest themselves in guest behaviour and what this means for design over the years to come.

Lauren Rottet
Lauren Rottet. Photography by Damian Miranda, courtesy of the Naftali Group

Yann Bernard Lejard, Executive Chef at Ritz-Carlton Bahrain – Bridging Art and Gastronomy

Representing an extraordinary confluence of fine cuisine and artistry, chef Yann has created some of the most fascinating plate art in the world and helped to unleash global awareness of the possibilities of this art. Chef Yann’s motto is “to dare”, and looking at his plates, it’s easy to see what he means. His keynote at the Sleep & Eat Conference will provide an insight into the work and inspiration of this exceptional person.

Yann Bernard Lejard
Yann Bernard Lejard

In addition to the keynotes, insightful panel discussions are promised, including members of Women in Hotels considering the latest in hospitality acquisitions and developments, a panel of leading hotel general managers and another of international design company principals. The designers of the concept Sleep & Eat Sets, which in this 15th anniversary year of the event are focused on guestroom design for the next 15 years, will share their thinking and inspiration, and resort developers from around the world will talk about the rise of wellness travel and the closely aligned issue of sustainability.

Sleep & Eat Virtual will take place on 17 – 19 November. Explore the full Conference agenda.

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