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The Innovation Village

Ecole hôtelière de Lausanne (EHL) launched the first business incubator for hospitality concepts and start-ups in 2009 to create a dedicated resource for the development of new hospitality and F&B concepts. The initiative was embraced by students, alumni and industry partners and it became clear that a new space was needed to house the ever-growing pool of ideas and innovators that were coming from the school and the industry.  

That is why, in 2018, EHL signed an agreement with Ville de Lausanne to develop an innovation ecosystem near the EHL campus in the historical hamlet of the Quartier de l’Auberge of Chalet à Gobet. This new Innovation Village has two core missions: to support entrepreneurship and to inspire and disrupt the food & hospitality industry, and it is powered by strategic partners.

Nestle Logo
Hotelleriesuisse logo
Fondation Casino Barriere Montreux Logo
Marriott Logo

    The Village Site & Facilities

    On a uniquely harmonious site, the Innovation Village offers a hospitality and food ecosystem for students, alumni, entrepreneurs, researchers, experts, investors, artists and passersby to discover the latest trends in hospitality.  This casual and creative space is located in a 4’000 m2 historical hamlet, just a short distance from the EHL Lausanne campus, offering these facilities and attractions:

    • EHL’s Business Incubator with offices and meeting rooms for start-ups
    • Food Lab (400m2) for applied, food-related research and testing
    • The Auberge, a café and restaurant open to the public
    • Testing and research for F&B and hospitality concepts
    • Events’ and exhibitions to stimulate ideas and create networking opportunities

      EHL Hospitality Innovation Hub
      FIT Digital by EHL

      In 2019, the Fondation pour L’Innovation Technologique (FIT) Digital and the EHL Innovation Foundation launched a tool to support:

      • Start-ups that develop innovative digital solutions for the food and hospitality industries
      • That are or are willing to join the EHL incubator as resident /incorporated members
      • These start-ups are selected and coached by a committee and advisors from FIT Digital.

      Learn more about the FIT Digital
      What can the Innovation Village offer you?


      • Get access to resources and guidance to help make your game-changing business idea a reality.

      EHL Students :

      • Internship in your own start-up: you have a food or hospitality relevant project or start-up, you can do your Bosc4 internship further developing it whilst being based at the EHL incubator and guided by faculty innovation experts. Contact us for more information
      • Internship in an Innovation Village start-up: you are interested in the thriving entrepreneurship world but don’t have a project of your own, you can apply to do your Bosc4 internship in one of the 20 food and hospitality start-ups based at the Innovation Village. Contact us for more information
      • SEP (student entrepreneurship project) in your own start-up: you have a food or hospitality relevant start-up ?You can do your Bosc6 SEP further developing it whilst being based at the EHL incubator and guided by faculty innovation experts.
        Contact us for more information 

      • JEHL and Club des entrepreneurs : the innovation village EHL is both an EHL centric initiative and collaborates actively with external talents (entrepreneurs, large enterprises, academia, experts…). These contacts and partnerships generate many collaborations with student committees.


      • Get access to support for promising start-ups in digital food or hospitality services
      • Become a strategic partner of the EHL Innovation Village (sponsorship, visibility)
      • Test innovative concepts in the Auberge or the Food Lab
      • Conduct research on food or hospitality topics
      • Have access to EHL’s international faculty and student expertise
      • Attract student or alumni talent to your organization

      Industry Experts & Academics:

      • Share your expertise with our community through workshops or services.
      • Become a visiting lecturer
      • Partner with us on research projects


      • Reconnect with EHL through innovative business opportunities
      • Visit the Innovation Village and meet start-up


        The Hospitality Business Incubator

        IOT, blockchain, gaming, computer vision, smart data, 3D printing, 5G, AI, personalized nutrition, sustainability, robotics, material science… are changing the world we live-in and impacting our industry. EHL's Business Incubator supports promising startups or entrepreneurial projects that focus on or are relevant to the food and, or hospitality industry.

        If you are passionate about the latest trends and technologies in hospitality or F&B, then we invite you to join our Innovation Village model. We have a variety of spaces and resources available for our partners and we will be happy to discuss your needs.

        Start a project
          EHL Innovation
          Incubator Model

          Innovation Village



            • Illimited access to the Incubator
            • Fixed desk in a coworking space
            • Incorporation of the start-up to EHL
            • 6 hours per month access to the meeting rooms of the incubator
            • Access to the events & networking
            • Liking to the EHL network when necessary ( EHL professors, students, students committee, companies)
            • Access to EHL services (reception, printshop, discounts at restaurants & boutiques)
            • Increase of visibility & communication through our website, posters, newspapers
            • Member of the Community on Slack
            • Access to the common spaces of the incubator (kitchen, sleeping room, ping-pong, baby-foot)
            • Opportunity to apply to the Fit Digital by EHL « Seed» “or Growth” program (if not incorporated to EHL or less than 6 months)

            Monthly Fee : CHF 350.- per desk included 2 cards to access the Incubator


            • Access to the incubator 10 days per month during opening hours, from 7.30 am to 10pm.
            • Free seat place in the Visitor co-working Space upon availability
            • 2 hours access to the meeting rooms of the incubator & networking
            • Increase of visibility & communication through our website, posters
            • Member of the Community on Slack
            • Access to EHL services (reception, printshop, discounts at restaurants & boutiques)
            • Access to the events & networking
            • Access to the common spaces of the incubator (kitchen, sleeping room, ping-pong, baby-foot)
            • Opportunity to apply to the Fit Digital by EHL « Grant » program (if not incorporated to EHL or less than 6 months)

            Monthly fee: 100.- CHF per person


            Community (Members & Alumni)

            • Access to common spaces during working hours / days
            • Invitations to expositions and events

            For all members (mentioned above): Access to events, SLACK community member, discounts at EHL outlets and Print shop, incubator card, access to the nap room, logo posted on EHL incubator digital and paper communications supports, Ping-Pong, and the incubator baby foot table.

            Followers (Online Followers)

            • Stay up to date on new start-ups and innovation trends
            • Innovation Village news


            Contact us

              Start-ups and entrepreneurs

              (Arve Air) DragonBack Innovation

              (Arve Air)  DragonBack Innovation is a Swiss/Hong Kong based start-up with its big vision: to give people access to clean and healthy air. With our digital air quality services for hotels we  create added values in real time – both for hotel guests and operations. Our Air-as-a-Service approach combines the most advanced technologies such as IoT and Big Data that leads to actionable insights and data-based decision-making.

              «As we focus on the Asian hotel industry for market entry, the EHL network is of great value to us. We not only get access to relevant contacts, we also get challenged and gain new industry insights to constantly enhance our air quality services and customer experiences.» Kaspar Zimmerli, COO & Co-Founder Arve Air


              Arve Air



              Between seasonal, homemade, local, organic, sustainable and healthy products, how do you make the best possible choices? The Beelong eco-score evaluates food to provide simple information on the environmental impact of food products, in a context where the climate emergency is more than ever topical.

              “EHL is a cornerstone for tomorrow's hospitality industry and it's therefore a real opportunity for a young company to grow within the incubator. Beelong benefits from EHL’s extensive network and valuable support. We also have the opportunity to implement our indicator in the F&B outlets on-site – we couldn’t be any closer to those impacted by our tool!”

              Charlotte de La Baume  & Mathias Faigaux, Managing Partners of Beelong

              Beelong Logo



              Blent is data platform that allows hoteliers to have a 360° overview on their business, and produce very easily highly customizable dashboards, reports, and tables for all domains: stays, F&B, accounting, SPA, IoT, etc. And with our digital assistant you have now a direct access to your data, anywhere, anytime. Whether you manage one or hundreds of hotels, Blent will consolidate your data independently of the technologies behind, and you can now group or benchmark your properties very easily.
              Christopher Meignier – CEO

              Logo Blent

              Chez Bacchus

              Logo Blent

              "Chez Bacchus hospitality is taking one of the oldest businesses to the future. How can we bring back the appeal of brick and mortar dinning experiences & retail whilst at the same time taking advantage of all the technology we have at our disposal? We have created an experimental Wine Bar/Restaurant with an integrated & hybrid retail space that challenges the way people consume wine.”


              Freelane is creating new digital product that will change how we travel! It optimises the traveller's schedule in real time, by anticipating solutions to barriers, re-sequencing routes and providing bespoke adjustments, so he/she can decide on the best personalized solutions fitting with the travel diary priorities. Freelane also identifies bespoke opportunities for hassle-free, efficient and enjoyable travel, door-to-destination. For each traveller. Freelane is a B2C and B2B solution, available as an app and API.



              Kuneco Logo

              Kuneco is a crowdfunding platform designed to foster engagement among small and medium hospitality organizations, their guests and the local charities to support communities’ social development and destinations’ attractiveness growth.


              Metaphysiks Logo

              “We take immersion to innovative heights. Our soft robotic interfaces interact with the skin, combining temperature, pressure, and vibration to create a realistic tactile experience while proprietary algorithms mimic how the brain merges touch with vision, sound, and movement to create and restore lifelike multi-sensory experiences.
              Our first trailblazing product, STill, offers users multi-sensory experiences immersing the human mind and body into the digital world to improve sleep, relaxation, and meditation. With STill, turn any bedroom, suite, or communal area in your hotel into a wellness space without making large capital investments. Designed with comfort and usability in mind, just place STill wherever it’s needed.”

              www.metaphysiks.ch & https://still.metaphysiks.ch/


              Mixfit is a digital health company that designs nutritional experiences to encourage lasting, positive changes in health behavior.

              Their belief that the path towards a better, healthier, and longer life starts with nutrition drives everything they do.

              They leverage nutrition science, cutting-edge artificial intelligence, and digital health technologies in developing their health data platform and smart counter-top nutrient delivery appliance to provide consumers with personalized nutritional drinks & deliver wellness-related insight based on their unique health data.



              NewCo is an online service that allows founders to start their own business in minutes. Our goal is to help new entrepreneurs to start and then manage the legal and administrative formalities of their startup by developing simple and intuitive solutions.

              Newco Logo


              Nutrition it’s kind of complicated today. We don’t really know what to eat… The first goal of NutriPixi is to make it simple, so that nutrition becomes easy for everyone. We created a new type of lunchbox which helps you to build a balance meal really easily.
              Besides, education is one of our priority, that’s why we also give free access to nutrition class in our website to help people to learn how to eat healthy step by step.


              One StepUp

              It feels like plastic and looks like plastic.
              There is just one difference: it’s made from plants and it's fully compostable.
              One StepUp stands for a plastic-free world! We provide compostable packaging that returns back to the earth after use. All you need to do is throw it into your compost!

              One StepUp’s packaging is just as transparent, durable and impermeable as conventional plastic packaging.

              Together Let’s step into a more sustainable world!

              One StepUp


              OriginFood offer their clients customized track & trace solutions, combining the Internet of Things and blockchain technology. Founded in 2018 by Pierre-Alain Ceralli and Peter Gustavsson, both with extensive experience from the food and beverage industry, OriginFood focuses on helping clients fully leverage the new opportunities offered by blockchain technology to answer to the growing needs of the food industry for improved and immutable traceability and proof of origin throughout the entire supply chain and to the end consumer.



              PrivateDeal developed the first smart negotiation solution designed to increase direct bookings on hotels’ websites. This unique engine lets guests offer their own price for a room and, if necessary, automatically and instantly negotiates with them the best price for both parties. PrivateDeal helps hotels driving a higher conversion rate by capturing more guests in direct thanks to a highly customer-centric approach.

              “The incubator gives us the opportunity to expand our network, find faithful partners, participate to key events and benefit from the support of hospitality professionals. It is a strategic point for us in the success of our startup.” Lucien Mauguin, co-founder of PrivateDeal SA.


              RoomPriceGenie is a Swiss startup making dynamic pricing software available to smaller hotels. With a focus on excellence of pricing, allied to the necessity to aim for simplicity and low cost, we are looking to create the perfect revenue-management solution for the interconnected, big-data age.

              «For us, as a hospitality startup, there could be no better partner than EHL. With a strong network, top professors, and dynamic, entrepreneurial students and graduates, we feel that working with EHL gives us great opportunities in our growth journey.» Ari Andricopoulos, CEO RoomPriceGenie



              S1NGULAR1TY focuses both on the skills of our experts as well as their ability to creatively transform problematic and complex managerial situations through collective action rich in value-creating opportunities.Our approach is mainly focused on the human experience and the interactions of the enterprise system. Our consulting strategy is based on the complementarity of relevant professions and the interdisciplinary expertise. As a consulting company, the philosophy of S1NGULAR1TY is to focus on the actors who are permanently in concrete and problematic situations in order to make these situations intelligible on the one hand and also to transform these situations into opportunities.

              S1ngular1ty Logo


              smartTONi is an operation management system for professional catering kitchens. It allows untrained cooks to be productive in catering kitchens. A personal digital device advices kitchen staff step-by-step on the tasks to be done. This allows constantly high food quality at lower labour cost.
              Lorenz Bertschi CEO & Georgi Antonov – CCO

              SmartToni Logo


              Smeetz is the world’s first software platform for leisure organizers, using data analytics and AI-powered dynamic pricing to improve sales and market reach.



              Typsy Logo


              Willka Logo

              Willka lets you grow local food, year-round.

              Willka addresses the needs of the changing food landscape by providing the physical and digital tools to create local produce ecosystems on a global scale. With the right tools, infrastructure and support, you can become a WillFarmer, regardless of your background or geographic location.

              Most of us are eating produce that has traveled thousands of miles from its source: Not only does trucking and flying our food generate harmful emissions, but the greens typically arrive well beyond peak freshness.

              Willka technology makes it easy to bring people closer to their food source. The result is local, year-round production featuring fresh, sustainably-grown, and flavorful greens.


              They turned their idea into reality

              Why are some startups successful while others fail? From the idea, to the management team and the timing, shops are full of “how to succeed” books, but no one tells a more sincere story than the entrepreneurs themselves, especially if they are EHL Alumni.


              Read their Stories