26 May 2020 | NEWS
Like the cicada in the story we have sung, danced, enjoyed, eaten strawberries from Egypt or Israel, travelled all over the world, used up all resources, waged war against all our old friends, tried to build a better life for just about a quarter of us. We certainly succeeded, but at what cost?
Now that the other three-quarters of the planet would like to sing and dance too, should we tell them that the earth will stop spinning or implode if they do? In this duplicitous game, the fault always lies with the other. Today, however, there is no longer time to argue whether chicken or egg comes first. A wall is coming up fast. Can a man, who only perceives reality when it actually hurts him, avoid the inevitable?
We want experiences, to take images and videos on the other side of the world just to publish them on social networks in order to make our friends envious. In our time, it is no longer sufficient to enjoy the present moment. Will we be able to change, to return to simple pleasures, resisting the temptation to jump on a plane at every opportunity, to rush into stores or on the internet to pile up clothes in our wardrobes that we may not actually wear, slowdown or downright stop this frenzy of overconsumption and immediacy which only serves to satisfy a pathological need? Will we be able to take the time to appreciate, to choose, to watch and to rejoice. In fact, it means relearning to be rather than to have.
As a famous author once said: everything must change so that everything can stay the same. This phrase is still pertinent today. We must change our habits (at least our bad habits) if we are to continue to benefit from the wealth of this planet. There is no question here of decay, but simply a better use of resources: no longer buying to throw away; no longer consuming but investing; not systematically owning but sharing, exchanging, lending and repairing. We can produce yes, but build to last, without programming obsolescence. And, source locally with products free of toxic substances. If there is one sector in which it is easy to make this effort, it is that of furnishing and in particular for the bedroom in order to avoid the inhalation of all kinds of chemical substances are there, we are told, to protect us but which in fact, poison and kill us slowly.
The celebration of our magnificent jubilee is interesting moment for a bit of retrospective. A few decades ago, some found our traditional manufacturing “old-fashioned” and even outdated. However today, clearly Elite has never been so firmly rooted in its time while others are forced to begin some severe backpedalling.
Perfectly comfortable in our shoes, Elite continues to pursue the same philosophy of responsibility and commitment by using local natural materials as much as possible, respecting manufacturers and suppliers, avoiding products harmful to health and the environment at all costs, transforming a consumer good into an investment good, by offering guarantees of quality and comfort, by proposing repair solutions, in short, by ignoring the forces of fashion, so that everyone can continue to dance and enjoy this world , in its diversity and its beauty.
This does not mean that we have remained frozen in time, on the contrary. We have never stopped innovating, adapting our beds to the needs of sleepers, who have settled down, live longer and need attention for more marked back pathologies. Similar to this wooden spring developed in collaboration with the Bern University of Applied Sciences (BFH), which perfectly illustrates our commitment: there is no question of importing a species of wood from the other side of the world. We have, on the contrary, used the surplus from Swiss forests, which has been transformed in our workshops to offer a box spring with the same specifications as any other model. Smart Lease is also a pioneering circular economy model. It allows hoteliers to offer a superior quality bedding to their customers and to pay only for use of these beds, while benefiting from a disinfection service as well as condition and wear monitoring of this bedding. In this way, we no longer sell a good but the use of this good representing a complete paradigm shift. Rather than seeking to lower the cost price, we seek to increase the quality so that the product lasts as long as possible. In this context, an artisanal manufacturing approach using quality raw materials makes complete sense.
So, for the well-being of our customers, our employees and all those involved, let’s together write a new page in the history of Elite, and hope others will be there to write this editorial in another 125 years or so.
The jury met in February and named the winners of the 2021 Elite Design Award.
Le Gstaad Palace, construit en 1913 et tenu par la famille Scherz depuis 1938, est l’un des derniers hôtels 5 étoiles familiaux d’Europe. Rencontre avec le petit-fils Andrea Scherz qui dirige l’établissement depuis 2001 et qui a été élu hôtelier de l’année 2019. Il nous raconte pourquoi il a choisi d’offrir à sa clientèle des matelas Elite.
The 2020 Circular Economy Entrepreneur Conference (CE2), took place at the heart of the Elite workshops in Aubonne. This year’s theme explored new business models and the conditions of the associated political framework.