Service quality and design researchers in tourism have long been directed by demand-driven paradigms and consumer-centred rationales. Ontologies and epistemologies are largely output orientated and customer centred, that is, performance of services, number of satisfied customers, loyal repeat visitors, overnight stays, financial performance and others. We argue that a need exists to reduce this imbalance. This conceptual article reviews the relevant literature before developing five fundamental premises regarding the enabler-oriented view of the tourism industry. Future research should conduct empirical studies to validate and/or modify the premises presented in this conceptual article.