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02/15/2024 IHG Careers Team

GM, André Buldini: bringing sustainability, wellness and a touch of the extraordinary to Luxury & Lifestyle

For our inspirational Luxury & Lifestyle General Managers, their role is more than just a job: it’s a calling. And it takes a special kind of person to step up to the challenge. We are searching for GMs to help us continue to redefine a new era of luxury and lifestyle. GMs like André.

André Buldini is the General Manager at Six Senses Douro Valley in Portugal’s stunning wine region; a property which offers guests a luxury stay like no other, based on three key pillars: sustainability, wellness and extraordinary experiences.

We recently caught up with André to hear more about his personal journey and how he inspires excellence as the GM of this prestigious and unique hotel.


Growing up, André was inspired by family recounting their experiences working in hospitality. For an imaginative and adventurous boy, the idea of being able to work at a hotel anywhere in the world was extremely enticing, with so many exotic locations and cultures to explore.

This ambition clearly endured, and André launched his career in hospitality right after he finished his studies. Starting at a small island in Portugal, this was his first time living away from his parents, and he recalls feeling a mixture of excitement and terror.

With 25 years of hospitality experience amassed, André finds himself in his first GM role at Six Senses, but now, it’s only excitement he feels. As he describes it, the “terror” he felt as a young man going into a new career has turned into “this adrenaline which gives you the drive and the push to do it - and each time do it better.”

“For me, luxury means always finding a solution, always saying yes, always exceeding a guest’s expectations.”

André was first drawn to Six Senses when a good friend suggested the brand would be a great fit for him, knowing his passion for sustainability, wellness, and for creating unique luxury experiences. From the very first conversation, he loved the active commitment to these pillars which the brand consistently showed; in his words, it’s “a company that walks the talk.”



Furthermore, Six Senses Douro Valley back up their sustainability promise with a fund which helps connect the business with the local community. Contributing towards care of the beautiful environment surrounding the property, including renovating schools for children, homes for the elderly, and protecting endangered animals.

“Six Senses is a beautiful place. It's a magical place. You have amazing landscapes and nature all around.”



Six Senses is committed to pioneering wellness practices, both for guests and for colleagues. André found that making changes in his own life – starting to meditate and becoming more conscious of his diet and fitness – brought him a deeper understanding of how wellness could be used to enhance the guest experience too.

Alongside all this, the third pillar at Six Senses is crucially about creating unique luxury guest experiences which will become memories that last a lifetime. To achieve these levels of consistent excellence and attention to detail, André applies an approach he calls ‘emotional hospitality’. It’s all about being present, aware and connected with what the guest wants. It’s about listening and responding. “I use it with our hosts and with our guests. You even take it home and use it with your partner because it becomes such a part of you.”



It’s clear André is very proud of all he has achieved – and rightly so. “Reaching the top of what I expected when I entered this career - becoming a GM in such an amazing property - is the realisation of a dream.”

So, what has been the key to André’s success; his most important learning? His response is very clear: “Surround yourself with the best people you can. The energy that forms around that group of people is very important and will cascade through the rest of the organisation.”


With a lifelong passion for hospitality, André is a shining example of what it means to be the best of the best here at IHG Hotels & Resorts. And you could join him.

We’re searching for general managers that specialise in turning our guests' dreams into reality. Leaders capable of inspiring colleagues around them to realise their own ambitions. Visionaries ready to redefine luxury and lifestyle travel at an industry level.

To discover how you can follow in André’s footsteps to lead a new era of luxury and lifestyle, click here.

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