Stanley Tollman, Founder and Chairman of The Travel Corporation, Enters the British Travel & Hospitality Hall of Fame
In a glittering ceremony yesterday at London’s Dorchester Hotel, Stanley Tollman was welcomed into The British Travel & Hospitality Hall of Fame, presented by Travel Weekly and The Caterer.Tollman joins an illustrious group of individuals who have all been recognized for their outstanding business achievement in the travel, hospitality, leisure and tourism sectors. Other new members inducted to the Hall of Fame included: Stephen Kaufer, President & CEO of TripAdvisor; Peter Kerkar, Group CEO of Cox & Kings; Gerald Lawless, President & Group CEO of Jumeirah Group; Chris Corbin and Jeremy King, Co-Founders of Corbin & King; and Bill Munro, Chairman of Barrhead Travel.
The Travel Corporation is a highly successful group of 30 award-winning brands including Trafalgar, Insight Vacations, Contiki, African Travel, Inc., The Red Carnation Hotel Collection and Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection. It serves 2 million customers each year and operates in more than 60 countries, on seven continents, with more than 40 offices and 10,000 team members. Passionate about delivering consistently outstanding service, experience and value to each and every customer, the company has been family-run for four generations and is privately-owned and financially independent.
Born in South Africa in 1930, Tollman’s first taste of the industry came from his parents’ hotel and restaurant near Cape Town, and from the age of 19 he set about building his own portfolio of hospitality businesses. His second hotel in Johannesburg, The Hyde Park Hotel, was home to the Colony restaurant whose glamorous cabaret bar played host to the likes of Petula Clark, Michael Caine, Stanley Baker, Marlene Dietrich and George Peppard.
In the early 80s, The Red Carnation Hotel Collection was born, and has grown to include 17 properties including Ireland’s iconic Ashford Castle, which reopened this month following a glorious restoration and enhancement program.
Over the following decades, Tollman expanded his interests to include guided holidays, premium and luxury escorted tours, small group adventures, luxury river cruising, safari and adventure and youth travel business, turning his company into what is now The Travel Corporation. The Travel Corporation has grown under his leadership to be a truly diverse and global travel company.
Now in his ninth decade, he still takes a very active interest in the business. Under his guidance, The Travel Corporation has demonstrated its commitment to sustainable tourism with its not-for-profit TreadRight Foundation, a joint initiative between the company’s family of brands. To date, TreadRight has helped support more than 35 sustainable tourism projects worldwide.
Tollman was joined by his family and Senior Executives of The Travel Corporation. On receiving the honor, Tollman said:
“When I first started out in the hotel business, my father said to me, ‘Give the customer what they want,’ and I’ve tried to follow that advice in everything we do.
“In the pursuit of excellence and trying to make everything we do the best it can be, I have been enormously helped. My wife, my partner and my soulmate, has been there supporting and working all along the way, later joined by my children who made all the difference. In addition, the 10,000 people who work for us around the world are our family as well. Thank you very much for this honor – it is a very humbling experience and probably the highlight of my life.”