Glion alumnus organizing BELIEVE IN Marseille Arts & Music Festival
When Florent de Serpos, BBA ’12, was offered the chance to become the hospitality manager for a new arts and music festival in his home town of Marseille, France, he accepted the challenge without hesitation. Organizing a major event like the BELIEVE IN Marseille Arts & Music Festival, where they expect to see 20,000 visitors over one weekend, is a complicated task. We caught up with Florent to get some insight into how he got this dream-job and see how it’s going so far.
‘I started working for the BELIEVE IN Marseille company in November 2013 when I came back from a management training in New York at the St Regis. The concept has been created by two young and ambitious “Marseillais” entrepreneurs named Virgile and Dorian, who are partners,’ explains Florent, ‘Their mission is to show that Marseille is not a criminal city but a growing city with a lot of touristic potential. They convinced me to join them and I accepted this major challenge that I believe will show a better picture of my hometown.’
The BELIEVE IN Marseille Arts & Music Festival promises the best of the city’s sounds, tastes and sunshine for tourists and inhabitants alike. It will take place on June 20-21st on the scenic Esplanade J4 of Marseille’s sea front. As the first outdoor festival of its kind, the event will showcase the diverse, dynamic cultural scene of Marseille. Featuring both local and international musicians, the festival will offer an eclectic musical experience while artists from the regional art and design schools expose their work.
As the dates are rapidly approaching, Florent is very busy, ‘I am working as hospitality manager for the company. My role is to take care of our artists. In other words, I’m organizing their stay, transportation between the airport, the venue and the hotel; scheduling their performance time, anticipating their slightest desires in terms of hospitality on the stage, backstage and VIP area by being in contact with their tour manager. Because of their international reputation we must provide the best service and make sure they will not forget their trip to Marseille.’
During his time at Glion, Florent completed several internships, including one position in food & beverage administration at the Park Hyatt in Pekin. It came as no surprise to him that setting up an event of this size is a big challenge.
‘The major challenge I am facing is how to manage all the venues on this event. Anticipation is the key to the success of this event. Glion taught me how to anticipate my guest’s needs and wants through management courses. The theory and practice I acquired back in Glion is now put into a real business situation with high financial risks. Without my experience from Glion, I would have not been able to manage the details for such huge event.”
In just a few months, this festival will come to life so we invite everyone to support this event with true Glion Spirit. Remember, Marseille is only five hours away from Glion and Bulle campus by car.