Staying true to its values and reinventing vacations to make guests happy
"The aim of life is to be happy and the time to be happy is now"* Now present on five continents, Club Med first saw the light of day in 1950 and was the result of a groundbreaking idea: offer vacations that combine sports with nature and the great outdoors in a relaxed and informal setting. Come stay at a Club Med Resort. These unique resorts, built in amazing locations, not only offer food and accommodation but also a whole host of events and activities incorporating sports, wellbeing, and entertainment. The Chef de Village, like the conductor of an orchestra, organizes life at the Resort. With the help of our Gentils Organisateurs (G.Os®) and their “crazy signs," your stay is sure to be filled with heart and soul. Freedom, friendliness, confidence building, multiculturalism, and goodwill: Gentils Membres (G.Ms®) discover the values of Club Med. Your all-inclusive package includes recreational activities, child supervision (4 to 17 years of age), and even meals at our restaurants. One-of-a-kind, these signature services make your stay even more enjoyable. Discover new interests during group lessons: choose from golf, tennis, or water sports. Challenge yourself with unusual activities such as the flying trapeze, and return home with much more than memories. *Quotation by Gérard Blitz, founder of Club Med
Meet the founder of Club Med
Club Med (originally Club Méditerranée) was founded in 1950 in Alcúdia, a tiny fishing village in the Balearic Islands off the coast of Spain. Its founder, Gérard Blitz, along with Gilbert Trigano, a tent canvas manufacturer, had the groundbreaking idea of setting up a tented village for sports vacations with no restrictions in natural outdoor settings. "The aim of life is to be happy and the time to be happy is now:" these words, spoken by Gérard Blitz, resonated strongly during the post-war era. During that first summer, 2,000 guests vacationed at the Village, with 20 G.Os® (Gentils Organisateurs) responsible for their entertainment and supervision. The venture proved successful.
From the very start, Gérard Blitz and Gilbert Trigano put the emphasis on freedom and friendship: vacationers shared informal meals around 8-seat tables. Supervised by Gentils Organisateurs (G.Os®), every Gentil Membre (G.M®) was enriched by their contact with nature, sports, and each other. In 1957, the “Junior” Village was created to give children the chance to develop by participating in cultural and sporting activities. In the same year, remaining true to the spirit of freedom and friendship, the bar necklace made its appearance and became a currency for buying things without having to carry cash. Buffets were introduced in 1967, allowing guests to create their own meals from a wide variety of dishes. Club Med then invented the "all-inclusive" package to promote its new and original style of vacationing with others.
Building off its success, Club Med decided to expand and develop its Villages, replacing the tents with huts (such as at the Corfu Village in 1952). Club Med also began to grow outside of Europe, with Resorts in Djerba in 1954, Tahiti in 1955, Morocco in 1961, and Agadir in 1965. Its conquest of new paradises continued when the West Indies were added to its list of destinations. First came Guadeloupe in 1968, and then Martinique in the following year on Les Boucaniers Beach. At around the same time, Club Med began offering winter sports vacations, opening Villages in Leysin, Switzerland (1956) and Bear Valley, USA (1968), thus confirming its worldwide expansion. In the early seventies, Club Med had 28 Villages spread across 4 continents. The Trident (Ψ) has been the official Club Med logo since 1980 and is used to rank the level of services in the various Villages (on a scale of 3 to 4 Tridents). In 1989, Club Med diversified its offering by launching its very first floating Village: the Club Med 1, the biggest cruise liner in the world.
As the pioneer of the all-inclusive vacation, Club Med has always invited people to enjoy their stays without having to worry about a thing. Over the years, the formula remained the same and the company's international presence grew. Ever attentive to the needs of its clientele and to changes in consumer behavior, Club Med decided in 2004 to reposition itself at the higher end of the market in terms of design, ambiance, and lifestyle, all the while remaining true to its values and the concept of the all-inclusive vacation. By renovating and upgrading Resorts from 4 to 5 Ψ and creating the Exclusive Collection 5 Ψ line, Club Med was now able to offer new, top-of-the-line vacations without sacrificing its pioneering values of informality and multiculturalism. Furthermore, Club Med continued to assure G.Ms® that they would experience vacations filled with thrills, emotion, and the discovery of other cultures, as demonstrated in its advertising campaign "Let us amaze you" featuring the tagline "Come back with much more than memories."
Today, Club Med has nearly 80 Resorts (rated 3 to 5 Ψ) in 30 countries, run by G.Os® and Chefs de Villages of a hundred different nationalities who embody the values of Club Med and guarantee the happiness of our G.Ms®.