In 1939, the war broke out and soon after in 1941, some courses were suspended due to the lack of participants. The school was finally forced to close its doors, like many other renowned schools of the sector.
In 1942, at the Assembly of Delegates of the SSH (Swiss Society of Hoteliers), on behalf of the Alumni Association, Mr. Schweizer suggested to reopen EHL for its 50th anniversary in 1943.
Within only few months, the Alumni Association with the support of Herman Schmid, SSH vice president, managed to collect nearly 137,000 francs.
Thanks to this, the school's reopening project became reality in May 1943. More than 600 people linked to the hospitality industry were involved in this fundraising initiative called "SOS survival".
For the reopening, three five-month courses were developed: service, kitchen and administration. These courses were supplemented by 5 to 7 months internships in Switzerland or abroad.