The 10th NYC Experience Wellness and Travel Media event presented by Organic Spa Media on June 17, 2022 highlighted five major wellness trends that meeting planners should be aware of in booking spa experiences or resorts with wellness-centered offerings.
These trends have relevance for planners in a variety of ways. From what products to put in gift bags and what type of resort to choose, to what experiences groups can enjoy together to maximize wellness, these trends are what spa, resort and wellness pros are talking about now.
In panel discussions and in a release prior to the event, participants mentioned:
- Clean Beauty & Self-care: Healthy and natural ingredients; sustainable sourcing; plastic-free packaging, along with diversity and inclusivity in brand leadership and treatments, are more important than ever. Beauty (along with fashion, wellness lifestyle and wellness travel) is embracing ethical responsibility and socially responsible business practices, and touting a commitment to people and planet, with B Corp and Fair-Trade certifications.
- Mental Wellness: From psychologists on staff at spas to new meditation and mindfulness practices at wellness centers, to psychedelic healing, an increased focus on mental health can be found throughout the industry, geared toward reducing stress and anxiety.
- CBD/Medical Marijuana: CBD is everywhere, and it’s also all over the spa industry, from products and treatments for pain relief to stress reduction, mental balance, anti-aging and inflammation. Next on the horizon: medical marijuana treatments. At the panel discussion on CBD, however, experts warned that CBD can interfere with a wide variety of medical conditions and issues and must be used with caution and much advance information about these potential interactions.
- Wellness Journeys: Travelers who no longer want to wait to fulfill their travel dreams and desires, as they “trip-stack” –book longer, back-to-back trips. Popular wellness treatments include red light therapy, infrared saunas, vitamin drips and injections, salt therapies and sound healing as hotel spas and fitness clubs bring “medispas” –and out-of-the-box mind-body modalities–to the mainstream.
- Beyond Sustainability: There are eco-trailblazers in luxury hospitality, from those who sought LEED certification early on to carbon-neutral and plastic-free resorts. Not only are bigger brands now signing on, they are looking beyond sustainability toward regenerative practices: regenerative agriculture, giving back and sustaining local communities, Climate Neutral certifications, as well as crafting high-end offerings like plant-based Michelin and five-star menus.
The event also featured Mayan healer Fernanda Montiel who worked with participants to clear their auras and offer healing stones as gifts, infused with special intent for each person who undertook the healing. Montiel was at the event with the Waldorf Astoria Los Cabos Pedregal. She is an important indigenous healer who is often a special guest at the resort where she offers similar experiences in a backdrop of the resort’s stunning natural beauty.
The event also featured the Belize Tourism Board’s Senior Travel Trade Officer Mrs. Deborah Arana, who gave an intimate press conference on how the country of Belize is marketing itself to both leisure and business and meetings travelers.
Birding, visiting Mayan ruins, horseback riding and white-water rafting are just some of the experiences groups can have when visiting resorts in Belize, a country that has long been on travelers’ “hot” lists because of its uniqueness and its ease of accessibility to the lower 48 U.S. states.