A reader poses the question:
“Heartful boutique” hotels. Is this the kind of new vision Esalen needs?
The reader references an email from Esalen CEO Tricia McEntee to the Esalen community, about on the aspirations of Chip Conley and Vanda Marlow to transform Esalen’s business and culture, and perhaps also Conley’s reputation as (to quote another reader’s assessment) a “new age Donald Trump” who describes his business as “heartful boutique hotel groups” (pictured here). Conley and Marlow now hold key managerial positions at Esalen, and Conley has also joined the Board of Trustees.
As an experiment, Esaleaks are opening anonymous web comments (see yellow link above) with the reader’s question in mind.
Chip & Vanda (Conley and Marlow) and Esalen offer this PR blurb:
Chip is the Founder of Joie de Vivre Hospitality, one of the nation’s most successful and heartful boutique hotel groups. For four years now he has offered to our seminarians a life-changing workshop based on his best-selling book “PEAK: How Great Companies get their Mojo from Maslow”. Chip is a long-time Esalen devotee and is making a gift of his time and expertise to support us in our mission. Many of you will know Chip, and will also be familiar with his colleague, Vanda Marlow an experienced Leadership Coach who has each been coming to Esalen for two decades and co-leads with Chip. We’re thrilled to have found help from people who really understand the uniqueness of Esalen’s culture and can share with us the breadth and depth of their business knowledge in our own context.
The original missive from CEO McEntee is reproduced below:
Dear Esalen Community,
Our journey began in April when we launched the Esalen Service Culture Initiative, asking the Question – How do we consciously create our service culture together, in a cohesive and collaborative way, taking pride in what we offer to the thousands of lives we touch & change every year?
We have made much progress as we continue our journey together delivering Esalen’s Mission to the World, committed to the health of our Community, growing our relationships, improving collaborations, and enhancing our leadership capabilities.
Chip and Vanda have been supporting and guiding us on our path starting with the EET (Experiencing Esalen Team) and the Leadership Culture Survey and leading towards bridging the gap with particular focus on relating, fostering team play and building trust and relationships at all levels of the organization.
Now Chip and Vanda will join the whole community as we learn more about Peak leadership, Abraham Maslow, and creating a “healthy pond” which symbolizes the vibrant culture we are co-creating. I am excited and honored to welcome Chip & Vanda to Esalen on Monday August 22nd for two inspirational sessions with our Community.
Chip is also generously offering his time for questions and discussions over dinner. We will have a table reserved in the lodge at 6:00 pm Monday night. And this precious time spent together will be best served if you have already attended a session earlier in the day.
Managers, supervisors and staff please support each other in enabling maximum attendance. Please confirm with your manager which meeting will work best for you and plan to attend during that time. The session during the day (not the dinner) is a required meeting for all fulltime, regular part-time and ES staff. Please log your attendance in your timesheets as these are paid hours.
Please join me in welcoming Chip & Vanda into our Community.
In Gratitude for your support,