Who He Is: A serial digital entrepreneur who launched his first start-up at the ripe old age of 26, Lewis has long viewed the Internet as a vehicle for empowering consumers. It was only a matter of time before this road warrior turned his sights to helping travelers: “I’m a younger version of the George Clooney, Up in the Air–type guy,” he says.
His Big Idea: Loyalty matters. Lewis recently launched Topguest, an app and website that uses location-based services (Foursquare, Gowalla, Facebook Places) to help travelers earn loyalty points and perks at hotels, airlines, and restaurants. (Partners include InterContinental hotels, Virgin America, and restaurants from New York’s Spice Market to Napa Valley’s The French Laundry.) The benefits are significant: Just by “checking in” five times at the bars or restaurants of the Standard, New York, you get 25 percent off at other Standard properties.