BOND Five Star 2019

The Forum for EMEA’s Leading Five Star Hotel Designers

April 4-7, 2019

Venice, Italy


The program below is from 2019’s event

Seminar timings and/or content may vary at our discretion.

Thursday, April 4

Delegate Arrivals

6:30 pm Stucky Garden

Seminar - Chair's Welcome

RK Stewart, FAIA | Former AIA President (2007)

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RK Stewart FAIA is a leader in project management, project delivery, building performance and design education. His 43 years of experience include leadership positions with Gensler, SOM, Perkins+Will, as well as teaching architecture at the University of Utah, Mississippi State and Louisiana State Universities. As AIA’s National President in 2007 during its 150th Anniversary he advocated for sustainable design practices and Integrated Project Delivery. Mr. Stewart’s contributions have been recognized with his investiture in the AIA’s College of Fellows, named a Senior Fellow of the Design Futures Council and a Senior Fellow of the New Building Institute. RK has been an advisor to BOND since 2007 in his capacity as Non-executive Vice President of the company. He is now also managing editor of The Principal, BOND's new magazine bringing perspectives from architecture's leaders around the globe. He is an architectural graduate of the Universities of Kansas and Michigan. He resides in Salt Lake City providing consulting services and teaching at the University of Utah.
7:30 pm Stucky Garden

Welcome Drinks Reception

8:00 pm Stucky Garden

Welcome Dinner

Friday, April 5

6:00 am Molino Restaurant

Breakfast at your leisure

8:30 am E Ballroom

Seminar - The Outlook for Europe's Five Star Hotel Development

Rolf W. Schmidt | Founder & CEO, TOPHOTELPROJECTS GmbH

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Rolf will present the latest facts and figures about the luxury hotel project pipeline in Europe and an overview across borders.

Where should you be keeping an eye on? Which regions and cities are most important?

What projects are in the pipeline and what categories and hot brands are they focussed on?

Rolf will give us the latest numbers and statistics as well as a lot of background information about markets, trends and players.


Más de treinta años de experiencia en la industria hotelera internacional de hoteles. Antes de asumir la dirección del TOP HOTEL PROJECTS GmbH, Rolf fue director gerente / dueño de varias empresas en las áreas de investigación de mercado y consultoría de servicios enfocada a la industria hotelera. Rolf es un experto del mercado hotelero internacional y la industria hotelera - donde originalmente viene. Es un frecuente orador y moderador en congresos y eventos internacionales, autor de numerosos artículos en la prensa internacional, así como autor de un libro. Tiene una red internacional excepcionalmente en el nivel de gestión dentro de la industria hotelera y sus proveedores.
9:40 am ABCD Ballroom Foyer

Collect Final Meeting Schedule

9:50 am ABCD Ballroom

One to One Meetings

12:40 pm

Delegate Group Photograph

12:50 pm Molino Restaurant & Stucky Rooms


1:40 pm E Ballroom

Seminar - Advanced Materials and Systems through Nanotechnology

George Elvin PhD | Assistant Professor, School of Architecture , Gone Studio

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Nanotechnology, the design of materials at the molecular scale, is changing the face of architecture and custom homes. Already, luminous nanofilms are turning entire walls and ceilings into sources of light, nanoparticle coatings are making buildings self-cleaning and VOC-eating, and nanofilm solar panels are turning entire buildings into solar collectors. Join George Elvin, PhD, LEED AP, for a glimpse of some of the hundreds of building products currently using nanotechnology and a look ahead at next generation nanotechnologies. Together you’ll explore the technology behind the nano-revolution, what risks it may bring, and what it means for the future of building.


George Elvin is an Associate Professor of Architecture at North Carolina State University, where his research and teaching focus on architecture for extreme environments. He is the author of over 40 books, chapters and articles, and has delivered lectures and workshops in over 20 countries. In 1981 he founded his own design-build firm, and in 1998 received his PhD in Architecture from the University of California at Berkeley. He has been an Assistant Professor of Architecture at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, an Associate Professor at Ball State University, and a Visiting Fellow at the University of Edinburgh’s Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities.
2:40 pm ABCD Ballroom

One to One Meetings

4:45 pm E Ballroom

Seminar - Italian Art and Architecture

Andrew Graham-Dixon

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Andrew is an expert on Italian Art and Architecture. In his home country, he is best know for a massively successful BBC series ”Italy Unpacked” which he presented with the Chef Giorgio Locatelli. In fact, he has presented more television documentaries about art for the BBC than anyone else in the Corporation's history. He is one of the world’s leading art critics with a weekly column in the Sunday Telegraph (one of the UK’s leading newspapers), having written more than a million words on all aspects of the visual arts.  
6:15 pm

Free Time

7:30 pm Locanda Cipriani Restaurant

Drinks Reception

8:00 pm Locanda Cipriani Restaurant


Saturday, April 6

6:00 am Molino Restaurant

Breakfast at your leisure

8:40 am E Ballroom

Seminar - Seminar 4

David Kepron | Founder – Owner, NXTLVL Experience Design

David Kepron
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Awaiting confirmation. More information will be available soon.


David Kepron is a multifaceted creative professional with a compulsive curiosity to understand ‘why’, ‘what’s now’ and ‘what’s next’. He brings together his background as an architect, artist, educator, author, podcast host and builder to the making of meaningful and empathically focused customer connections at brand experience places around the globe.

David is a former VP - Global Design Strategies at Marriott International. While at Marriott, his focus was on the creation of compelling customer experiences within Marriott’s “Premium Distinctive” segment which included: Westin, Renaissance, Le Meridien, Autograph Collection, Tribute Portfolio, Design Hotels and Gaylord hotels.

In 2020 Kepron founded NXTLVL Experience Design, a strategy and design consultancy, where he combines his multidisciplinary approach to the creation of relevant brand engagements with his passion for social and cultural anthropology, neuroscience and emerging digital technologies.

As a frequently requested international speaker at corporate events and international conferences focusing on CX, digital transformation, retail, hospitality, emerging technology, David shares his expertise on subjects ranging from consumer behaviors and trends, brain science and buying behavior, store design and visual merchandising, hotel design and strategy as well as creativity and innovation. In his talks, David shares visionary ideas on how brand strategy, brain science and emerging technologies are changing guest expectations about relationships they want to have with brands and how companies can remain relevant in a digitally enabled marketplace.

David currently brings his creativity and insight on brand experiences to an international audience as a member of VMSD magazine’s Editorial Advisory Board, as a Board Member of the Interactive Customer Experience Association (ICXA) and Sign Research Foundation’s (SRF) Program Committee.

In 2014 Kepron published his first book titled: “Retail (r)Evolution: Why Creating Right-Brain Stores Will Shape the Future of Shopping in a Digitally Driven World” and he is currently working on his second book to be published soon. David also writes a popular blog called “Brain Food” which is published monthly on

In September of 2020, he launched a new podcast called “NXTLVL Experience Design” which brings listeners daring and different dialogues about “DATA: Design, Architecture, Technology and the Arts.” His guests include thought leaders who are driven by a passion to create the ‘New Possible’ and promote new paradigms of experiences into the mainstream.

9:45 am ABCD Ballroom

One to One Meetings

12:35 pm Molino Restaurant & Stucky Rooms


1:25 pm E Ballroom

Seminar - How Experience and the Latest Trends Bring Unique Hotel Properties to the Market

Thomas S. Ito, FAIA, LEED AP | Principal and Firmwide Hospitality Practice Area Leader, Gensler

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Thomas S. Ito, FAIA, LEED AP, a Principal and Firmwide Hospitality Practice Area Leader at Gensler, will speak about the latest hospitality trends with a focus on the key drivers of a great hotel experience and the factors that matter most – from design features to elements of service, technology and marketing. Using the culmination of a multiyear, mixed-methods research effort of the Gensler Experience IndexSM, Tom will explain the insights discovered to better understand the nature of the human experience and how we interact with physical space.


Tom a escala internacional liderando numerosos proyectos complejos de uso mixto, entretenimiento, planificación maestra y Hoteles en todo Estados Unidos y en todo el mundo. Su amplia experiencia como diseñador, arquitecto y pensador estratégico le da una comprensión integral de proyectos complejos de estilo de vida y una visión para ofrecer experiencias excepcionales a los huéspedes. Alineado con el Instituto de investigación de Gensler, el compromiso de Tom con la investigación para comprender la conexión entre el diseño, el negocio y la experiencia humana se demuestra a través de su participación en Experiencia IndexSM (EXI). Los hallazgos de esta investigación descubren nuevas formas de evaluar el diseño espacial, orientan los proyectos de formas innovadoras y pueden ayudar a medir el éxito. Las ideas logradas hacen EXI otra herramienta invaluable que se suma a la meta de traducir las visiones de los clientes en diseños exitosos y memorables. Tom es Arquitecto Registrado y obtuvo su Licenciatura en Ciencias en Arquitectura en la Universidad del Sur de California.
2:30 pm ABCD Ballroom

One to One Meetings

5:00 pm E Ballroom

Seminar - Transcending the boundaries of luxury design

Benoit Fraylon | Creative Director, W Motors

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W Motors was born out of the desire to harmonize form and function. The drive to tame the roaring beast within, to draw from its roughness something truly refined.

It was in 2013 when W Motors broke the rules of the automotive industry, appearing out of nowhere for the first time with a machine so genuinely different from what was made around the world at the time.

Through creating one of the most luxurious, exclusive and technologically advanced vehicles on the market, they also created a unique design language and aesthetic touch that inspired others.

Out of this, the W Motors Design Studio was born; a place not only where teams of experts develop their legendary hypercars, but also where they bend the design language and share their unique DNA onto different projects.

Creative Director and artist, Benoit Fraylon, will discuss how the W Motors aesthetic developed, spreading within the automotive industry and eventually transcending the supercar realm to influence pop culture as a whole.


Benoit Fraylon is a French Artist whose aim is to produce innovative and captivating works in the areas of Automotive, Design and Visual Arts. He is currently the Creative Director of W Motors, the first Arabian Manufacturer of Hypercars based in Dubai - Born in 1984 in Le Mans, the cradle of motorsport history, Fraylon’s passion for cars and racing started at a very young age through his early exposure in the environment where great racers and automotive developers are raised. Determined to undertake new challenges in the field of Automotive and Motorsport, he equipped himself with Product Design Formation in France and moved to England to obtain Automotive Degree at The School of Arts of Coventry University. Benoit Fraylon’s attention to details by combining futuristic creativity and luxury, won the attention of many after launching his well-known Ferrari Chinetti Concept. Being one of the foundations of Classic & Sports Cars France as an Art Director and Racing & Emotion Co-founder/ Entrepreneur, Benoit’s great passion into making great concepts to life lead him to being a part of the highly reputable industry of Luxury Automotive World in the Middle East.
5:45 pm

Free Time

7:30 pm Skyline Bar & Terraces

Farewell Drinks Reception

8:00 pm Skyline Bar & Terraces

Farewell Dinner

Sunday, April 7

6:00 am Molino Restaurant

Breakfast at your leisure

Delegate departures

Interested in next year's event?


Hilton Molino Stucky

Once a flourishing flourmill on the banks of the Grand Canal, Hilton Molino Stucky Venice has been beautifully restored and offers a different view of the magical city of Venice. With 379 rooms and suites, the largest Congress Center and the second largest spa in Venice, a collection of bars and restaurants and a stunning rooftop pool and bar, the hotel is the perfect location for a magical event in Venice.

Via Giudecca, 810,
Venice 30133, Italy

+39 041 272 3311

Visit Venue Site