As a major employer in the hospitality industry, IGLTA Global Partner Accor recognizes the critical role it must take in setting and enforcing the standard for Diversity & Inclusion. The challenges of the last few years have only reinforced the importance of community and the relevance of the Group’s values: inclusion, equity and care for others. These core pillars are a great strength and driver of momentum throughout the Group, cultivating company-wide innovation and performance, and creating an inclusive environment for all to thrive in.
Accor Group strives to continuously build upon and develop initiatives to ensure the LGBTQI+ community feels supported to travel and experience the world. Whether it is through implementing internal inclusion policies, promoting external messaging such as ibis’ “We are Open” campaign, sponsoring Pride marches, or Accor's new LGBTQ+ Employee Resource Group (ERG) named "Together," which seeks to unite the LGBTQ+ employees and allies of the global hotel group, Accor seeks to be a leader on LGBTQI+ topics and is proud to partner with IGLTA on this initiative.
Accor and IGLTA will work to ensure the hospitality industry is a safe and inclusive space for all, and will facilitate and drive equality within the travel sector.
In July 2023, IGLTA Vice President – Global Partnerships Clark Massad joined members of Together, Accor's LGBTQI+ & Allies Employee Resource Group, for a summertime apéro at the Mercure Paris Centre Tour Eiffel. The gathering was in celebration of the hotel’s recent IGLTA Membership and an opportunity for the group to discuss the challenges facing LGBTQ+ travelers in an informal setting.
We spoke with Yan Laurent, General Manager; and Nicolas Godard, Deputy General Manager of the Mercure Paris Centre Tour Eiffel, about the hotel’s engagement with and support of the LGBTQ+ community.
IGLTA: Yan and Nicolas, tell us why supporting LGBTQ+ travelers is important for you and the hotel.
YL: It is important to be able to work in line with your principles and those of the brand and the Group that employs you. Accor defends the values of diversity, equity and inclusion that I share, so it was important and natural for me as General Manager of the Mercure Paris Center Tour Eiffel to support my most committed employees through the unwavering support of the IGLTA association.
NG: I am proud to work for the ACCOR Group, which for years has supported the LGBTQI+ community and [has] made it one of the pillars of its Diversity, Equity and Inclusion policy. [I’m] proud to evolve within a society where everyone is welcome, whether employee or customer.
IGLTA: Why did the Mercure Paris Centre Tour Eiffel decide to become a Member of IGLTA?
NG: A further step was taken by the Accor Group two years ago by becoming a Platinum-level IGLTA Global Partner. It is therefore quite natural that I proposed to my teams to engage in the process of joining the association, as a large-capacity hotel in Paris located at the foot of the most visited monument in France, the Eiffel Tower.
IGLTA: Why has the Mercure Paris Centre Tour Eiffel decided to start the IGLTA Accredited™ certification process?
YL: Our team is invested in this approach and very motivated to obtain the IGLTA Accredited certification. We would be very proud to be able to contribute significantly via this label and through an emblematic place represented by the Eiffel Tower to the defense of the values of inclusion that are dear to us.
NG: Thanks to the unfailing support of a team that celebrated, as it should, the month of pride last June, we will work from August on to obtain the IGLTA Accredited™ certification, a label that we will be proud to display within our hotel soon. We are therefore keen to show that our hotel is a place where everyone will be warmly welcomed and can stay here with complete peace of mind.
Yan Laurent Nicolas Godard
General Manager Deputy General Manager
About the Mercure Paris Centre Tour Eiffel: Located just steps from the Eiffel Tower, Mercure Paris Centre Tour Eiffel is a 4-star hotel in the heart of Paris. An ideal starting point for leisure, guests will appreciate the staff’s tips for visiting the City of Light. Enjoy a closer view of the Eiffel Tower from one of the privilege rooms with a view. Mix work with pleasure in the renovated meeting facilities and relax at the restaurant terrace or garden after a workout!
About Accor: A valued Platinum-level IGLTA Global Partner since 2021, Accor is the leading Augmented Hospitality hotel group offering unique and meaningful experiences in more than 5,100 hotels across 110 countries. In June 2022, Accor launched Together, Accor's LGBTQI+ & Allies Global Employee Resource Group. Two Accor Group hotels are among the first to obtain IGLTA Accredited™ certification: the Swisshôtel Nansai Osaka, the first hotel in Asia to be IGLTA Accredited™; and the Sofitel Legend The Grand Amsterdam, the first hotel in Europe to be IGLTA Accredited™.
About IGLTA Accredited™: The program is based on an 8-criteria assessment focused on the LGBTQ+ inclusivity efforts of travel brands. The accreditation is an all or nothing approval, so organizations must meet all 8 criteria each year to continue to claim they are IGLTA Accredited™. IGLTA Accredited™ is NOT a training or education program on how to be LGBTQ+ inclusive. Rather, it is an audit process and declaration that the inclusivity efforts are in place. IGLTA can provide travel brands with a list of recommended organizations who provide the necessary inclusivity training in order to become accredited. While applying for accreditation itself is relatively simple, the steps necessary to be inclusive and become eligible as an accredited business are rigorous. For more information please visit https://www.iglta.org/iglta-accredited/
Photo credits: Accor