Boutique Design - December 2018 - 13

C O U R T E S Y O F T H E G E T T Y S G R O U P ( H I L L A N D FAY ) ; N I C H O L A S J A M E S P H O T O G R A P H Y ( C L A R I D G E H O U S E )

THE GETTYS GROUP: 30 YEARS
ROGER HILL, CHAIRMAN/CEO
AND ANDREW FAY, PRESIDENT

CLARIDGE HOUSE, CHICAGO

TELL US HOW YOU WENT FROM FRIENDS TO FOUNDERS OF
THE GETTYS GROUP.
ANDREW FAY: We bumped into each other literally the first day registering
for freshman classes at Cornell's School of Hotel Administration and were fast
friends. We became very involved with Ariane Steinbeck and Julius van Heek
(the firm's other cofounders) and the four of us hatched a plan to get together
in Chicago and start our own business.
ROGER HILL: We had the opportunity to do a lot of project work together
academically. We did a case study about redeveloping a hotel in Wisconsin and
that began the conversation about whether there was an opportunity for us to
build something together in the future.
WHAT OBSTACLES DID YOU FACE EARLY ON?
HILL: We were one of the first firms to offer interior design and procurement
services under one roof and, at that time in the industry, that sort of packaged
approach was frowned upon. But we were a young enthusiastic group that
came to the table with a clean slate and new ideas. That was enough for us to
get our foot in the door with our earliest clients.
FAY: One of the first and most important challenges was making the
decision to start the business. There were many people who doubted and
discouraged us from being "disruptive." There was a clear divide between the
left and right brain in the design business process. We pretty much lacked
any relevant experience, but we were full of optimism and idealism, ambition,
energy and passion. All of those things combined with the support, advice and
sage counsel of Roger's parents, were really pivotal to launching this business.
HOW HAS THE HOTEL SPACE EVOLVED SINCE THE FIRM'S
INCEPTION?
FAY: When we started the business, hospitality design was more about
implementing standards rather than creating authentic experiences for guests.
The industry was highly reactive, often sitting back and observing innovations
in other sectors. Hospitality design has evolved from a prototype-driven model
where all properties looked the same to a highly individualized model where
every property is unique.
HILL: The economic crisis of 2008 caused a lot of disruption in the industry.

By that time, we'd established ourselves as a global company and could shift
our focus to other areas of the world that were less impacted. As a result of
thoughtful and strategic decision-making, we'd developed a reputation that
was strong enough to land new commissions after the downturn.
IF YOU COULD GO BACK THREE DECADES, WHAT ADVICE
WOULD YOU GIVE YOURSELVES?
FAY AND HILL:
* Invest heavily in technology and training.
* Spend time learning what inspires and excites your clients and their guests.
* Hire for passion, creativity, flexibility and the desire to be part of something
unique.
* Focus on your organization's culture. The Gettys Group has grown into a
collection of brands that's grounded in a strong, collaborative, respectful
family culture. Love what you do-life's too short!
* Creativity and innovation will be the currency of your success. But keep a
watchful eye on the pragmatic and financial elements of a project and your
business.
WHAT IS TRENDLINE AND WHY DID YOU CHOOSE TO LAUNCH
THE INITIATIVE EARLIER THIS YEAR?
FAY: The hospitality design industry has gone through tectonic shifts since we
came on the scene. In order to stay ahead of the curve, we've always put great
value in research and innovation. Over the past few years, we've developed
a partnership with TrendWatching, a company whose mission is to help
forward-thinking businesses understand and capitalize on emerging consumer
trends. The brainchild of our chief innovation officer Ron Swidler and director
of trends and insights for TrendWatching Max Luthy, TRENDLINE is a
bi-monthly newsletter that identifies consumer trends affecting the industry.
IS THE GROUP EXPLORING ANY NEW TECHNOLOGY?
HILL: To us, technology should ultimately be about practicality: an intuitive
interface, simple operation and elegant presentation. The Gettys Group
currently utilizes virtual reality (VR) to allow clients to walk through their
space with our design concept overlaid on it before it's built. We're dedicated
DECEMBER 2018 boutiquedesign.com

13


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Boutique Design - December 2018

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Boutique Design - December 2018

Boutique Design - December 2018
Contents
From the Editor
In This Issue
Check Out boutiquedesign.com
The Buzz
2018 Gold Key Awards: The Why Factor
Q+A:S+S=Success
Products: Casegoods
Products: Lighting
Exit Interview
Boutique Design - December 2018 - Intro
Boutique Design - December 2018 - Boutique Design - December 2018
Boutique Design - December 2018 - Cover2
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 1
Boutique Design - December 2018 - Contents
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 3
Boutique Design - December 2018 - From the Editor
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 5
Boutique Design - December 2018 - In This Issue
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 7
Boutique Design - December 2018 - Check Out boutiquedesign.com
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 9
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 10
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 11
Boutique Design - December 2018 - The Buzz
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 13
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 14
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 15
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 16
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 17
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 2018 Gold Key Awards: The Why Factor
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 19
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 20
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 21
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 22
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 23
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 24
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 25
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 26
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 27
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 28
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 29
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Boutique Design - December 2018 - 101
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 102
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 103
Boutique Design - December 2018 - Q+A:S+S=Success
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 105
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 106
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 107
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 108
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 109
Boutique Design - December 2018 - Products: Casegoods
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 111
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 112
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 113
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 114
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 115
Boutique Design - December 2018 - Products: Lighting
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 117
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Boutique Design - December 2018 - 120
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 121
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 122
Boutique Design - December 2018 - 123
Boutique Design - December 2018 - Exit Interview
Boutique Design - December 2018 - Cover3
Boutique Design - December 2018 - Cover4
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