Mountain Education Group (MEG), a leading education group in China operating in K12 bilingual schools, and Les Roches business school have announced an exclusive cooperation. Through a strategic alliance, the two parties plan to develop a unique network of hospitality higher education campuses in China starting with a first campus in Shanghai in 2025.
Les Roches has always been committed to China and Chinese students, having been a pioneering actor in the country with its first establishment there in 2003. With MEG, Les Roches will pursue its mission to provide Chinese talents with world-class hospitality management education, building on the highest standards developed by the Swiss institution.
The agreement foresees pan-Chinese expansion of the Les Roches brand, starting with the first campus opening in Shanghai in two years’ time. The partners plan to open three to four campuses across the country (Shanghai, Wuxi, Suzhou).
On the day of the official signing, Les Roches CEO Carlos Díez de la Lastra said: “We are thrilled to share this new development for Les Roches. Les Roches is proud to have been the first actor in hospitality management education supporting the transformation of China’s hospitality industry as well as the development of its talent pool, and now wishes to continue to contribute to this dynamic and important industry in China. The aim of Les Roches is to offer the widest career opportunities to aspirants in hospitality and entrepreneurship, providing students with knowledge, skills and opportunities for international and national careers in hospitality, gastronomy, luxury and retail.”
MEG CEO Mr Zeng added: “For many years, MEG has consistently pursued an idealistic approach to education. The schools we invest in and manage in Shanghai and Suzhou have received high praise from parents and students, and several campus buildings have won numerous significant domestic and international awards.”
Sommet Education CEO Benoît-Etienne Domenget commented: “As one of the world’s fastest growing economies for careers in tourism and hospitality, China is an essential development platform for international education brands like ours to invest in and innovate. This new alliance will seal future opportunities to all of our students and Chinese talents.”
Les Roches will be responsible for academic curriculum development, as well as standard policies implementation. MEG will be responsible for all financial investments, land acquisition, architectural design, campus or project construction, licenses and permits, financial management, student recruitment and logistical arrangements.
The first iconic realisation of the two partners will be the “Shanghai Mountain Les Roches Campus”, a very ambitious project that brings a unique model of education and architectural design to the city of Shanghai. It will adopt an educational model based on academic learning and strong integration of practice within the curriculum. The principal team, academic team, and backbone teachers will be appointed by Les Roches. The teaching curriculum of the school will be aligned with the curriculum of Les Roches’ campuses in Switzerland and vocational education will be combined with undergraduate education.
The campus design is divided into two phases.
The project has entered the first phase of the design and planning stage. The campus building will be designed and built by a team of world-renowned and Pritzker Prize winning designers. The confirmed Pritzker Prize Winners include Alvaro Siza (Portugal) and Tadao Ando (Japan). In addition, MEG is inviting Peter Zumthor, a Swiss national treasure designer and winner of the Pritzker Prize in 2009, to join the design of this magnificent campus project. The other designers’ team includes Guo Xien and Hu Rushan, founding partners of Ruen Design Research Office, Liu Yichun, the chief architect of Dashe Architecture Design Firm, and Fan Beilei, the founder of Geng Architecture Firm.
Les Roches will also support MEG in the pre-opening phase of the campus with project management, as well as with facilities and operations development, marketing and enrolment. Detailed program offering will be developed this year, based on Les Roches’ academic standards and the needs of Chinese hospitality industry. Les Roches’ model hospitality education programs balance theory with practice, independent learning with strong faculty support and mentorship, providing a solid foundation for lifelong learning. Guided by its mission, Les Roches ensures that students acquire personal and professional skills for immediate employment and progression into leadership positions in the industry.