Jens Thraenhart – Editor

jens-shanghai_oct20051.jpgWelcome! I’m Jens Thraenhart,
Editor of

Currently, I am President of August Hotels & Residences – a new global lifestyle boutique concept with focus on Asia;  as well as President at Chameleon Strategies Consulting – an innovative Strategy think Tank, leveraging best of breed technologies and experts from all over the world, in order to help clients embrace new media and build strong customer relationships.  Previously, I was the Executive Director of Marketing Strategy and Customer Relationship Management for the Canadian Tourism Commission, based in Vancouver.

In that capacity, I am responsible for overseeing the development and implementation of approaches, programs and initiatives to ensure the effective management and expansion of integrated solutions to e-marketing, e-business, campaign management, customer relationship management, and technology development initiatives aimed at increasing the penetration of Canadian tourism in targeted markets.

I drive the domestic portal strategy to create synergies across Canadian destinations with the goal of generating targeted leads to travel and tourism providers. Prior to joining the CTC, I headed up E-Commerce for Fairmont Hotels & Resorts, as well as Marketing and Owner Relations for Fairmont’s Vacation Ownership and Residences division, Fairmont Heritage Place.

Originally from Germany, my 15 years of international hospitality experience includes hotel and restaurant operations, revenue management, sales & marketing, e-business, strategic planning, and hospitality consulting, as well as internet start-ups – and have been “actively online” since 1995.

I have worked with such companies as Fairmont, Four Seasons, Ian Schrager Hotels, Kempinski and Marriott, including founding and operating a successful food catering company and starting a New York-based Internet company focused on upscale leisure travel, as well as managing an independent luxury golf resort in Germany (and even working in an intensive closed psychiatric hospital as a nurse during medical studies). I also co-founded WOWtraveler ( with Travel Writer Mary Gostelow, which we successfully merged with Vancouver based publishing company Kiwi Collection.

I was recognized as one of the industry’s top “100 Rising Stars by Travel Agent Magazine” in 2003, and was listed as one of the “25 most Extraordinary Sales and Marketing Minds in Hospitality and Travel” in 2004 and 2005 by HSMAI.

Under my direction, has won multiple prestigious awards in website design and online marketing, including HSMAI (2003 Platinum & Best of Show Golden Click Award), ATME (2003 Gold Award – Most Effective Travel Website), World Travel Award (2003, 2004, 2005 World’s Leading Hotel Website – voted by over 80,000 Travel Agencies world-wide), (2004 Best Hotel Website), TravelClick (2004 Brand eMarketer of the year), Canadian Marketing Association (2004 Online Retailing Award), and Webby Business Awards (Finalist, 2003 Travel Category).

For the CTC, was awarded the HSMAI Gold Web Award in 2007, the only Gold winner in the Destinations/CVB category.

Additionally, I was the founding chair of the HSMAI Hotel Internet Marketing Committee, and established and chair the HSMAI Travel Internet Marketing Organization (TIMO).

I have been a speaker at many industry events, committees, universities and hotel schools, including Cornell University, HSMAI, HITEC, Eye for Travel, Phocuswright, Wired Asia, Travelcom, AdTech, DMAI, Search Engine Strategies, ITB Germany, and several international destination marketing conferences at the national, regional, state, and provincial level. I founded and chair the HSMAI Travel Internet Marketing Strategy conferences, and co-founded and co-chaired the first Online Revealed Canada conference in May 2006. I also founded and chair the Canadian E-Tourism Strategy Conference, Canada-e-Connect, which is held in conjunction with the first ever Canadian E-Tourism Awards, which I founded and chair.

I also founded and chair the Canadian E-Tourism Council, consisting of the “who’s who” in travel and tourism marketing and e-commerce in Canada, spanning through all industry sectors and all over Canada.

In addition, I have contributed to numerous articles, white papers, and text books, including “Demystifing Distribution”: Demystifying Legal Issues in the Online Landscape for Hotel Marketers, “Travel Marketer’s Guide to Social Media” and “Marketing Leadership in Travel and Tourism.

I sit on the board of several industry associations, such as Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association International – HSMAI (Board of Directors), Travel Industry Association of America – TIA E-Commerce Committee, International Hotel & Restaurant Association – IH-RA E-Business Committee.

I hold an MBA-accredited Masters of Management in Hospitality from the School of Hotel Administration at Cornell University, and a joint Bachelor of Science in International Hospitality Management from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and the University Center ‘Cesar Ritz’ at Brig, Switzerland. I serve as President of ‘Cesar Ritz’ Colleges’ Alumni Network Society, and served as President of the Cornell Hotel Society Toronto Chapter.

Feel free to listen and read a few of my articles or podcast interviews:

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Feel free to drop me a line.  My bio is available on my personal homepage.

All the best, and look forward to talking to you soon.