with Carl Schmitt, V.P., CMO of Ensemble Travel Group
got such a varied background – but this is your first foray into travel. How are you finding it?
Yes my background is very diverse, from skin care to brand
consulting, but there are a lot of parallels, working with small businesses and
connecting them with third party suppliers. I started with Avon where everything revolved around the representative
so there are definitely parallels!
are you coping with the travel industry lingo?
keeping a little book of acronyms!
based in New York – have you always lived in there?
Yes, in the New York area, apart from a few
years in Vermont. I commute into the
city by train, about 90 minutes each way from my home in Connecticut, which
seems a world away.
many people work at the Ensemble offices?
about 30 in New York and about 20 in Canada.
the best part of the job so far? The people, absolutely. Hardworking, smart, really open to collaboration.
did you want to be as a kid?
A Formula One race car driver. I’m a great car racing fan and even enjoy the vintage
car races in Connecticut.
was your first ever job?
Flipping burgers at
the scariest thing you’ve ever done? Parachuting, without a doubt. Would I do it again? You bet!
– spectator sports and seeing them in person.
your favourite airline? I don’t really have one. I’ve enjoyed the
service on Virgin, and domestically on Delta. It’s a hard one to choose.
Fairmont, hands down. I’ve had the good fortune to stay at
many. Great service and locations.
on your tablet?
A lot of podcasts – thanks to my
commute – and music. I really like Nils Frahm, who does experimental stuff like
an orchestral piece involving toilet brushes and a piano. It’s fantastic – you should
check it out!
do people not know about you?
That I’ve rappelled
hobbies or interests? I’m a hockey goalie on a few different
teams. And I love to read, both fiction
from something to eat, what was the last thing you bought?
A piece of art in Portland, Maine. Every time we go somewhere my wife and I try to buy some art.
would you tell your 20 year old self?
pursue knowledge and try to learn something every single day.
do you most admire in the industry?
I recently met
Frank Del Rio, CEO of NCL Holdings, and was very impressed by him.
skill or talent do you admire in someone?
The ability to pitch a ball at over 100 mph,
consistently. That’s impressive!
at the top of your bucket list?
Dog-sledding in the
arctic. That would really do it.
had a brush with fame? I have, many times. I actually developed a brand for Selma Hayek.
Very down to earth and personable and smart.
keeps you awake at night?
I sleep really well! All I need is 5 hours.
How do you stay fit when you travel? I have an in-room workout
routine believe it or not. It’s challenging for sure.
If you could change one thing about the industry what
would it be?
Awareness of the value of travel
agents. By far.
you could sit next to anyone on a long-haul flight, who would it be?
Author and thinker Malcolm Gladwell.
you have a favourite charity?
will be the biggest challenge for the industry in the next 12 months? I firmly feel it’s the
merging of technology and the human connection.
There’s too much information out there and people want to go to another
do you hope to be doing in 10 years? Definitely travelling with my wife. She deserves it and I want to show her the world!