Launch of Ground-Breaking Survey aimed at U.S. Consumers, “What Motivates YOU to Travel?”June 28th, 2012
U.S. residents are invited to participate in an online survey, What Motivates YOU to Travel.
As incentive for participants, travel prizes will be awarded to individuals who complete the survey. The grand prize winner will receive a three-night stay in an oceanfront guest room at the luxurious Terranea Resort – a lush, 102-acre escape located south of Los Angeles on one of Southern California’s most coveted coastlines. One lucky winner will be awarded a Roam Ride’s Vespa tour of South Beach, while six other winners will each receive a Kuhi Comfort Travel Pillow and five winners will receive skincare travel kits from KleanSpa.
About US Travel Consumer: Motivations & Perceptions on Travel & Wellness
While research on topics such as wellness, happiness and quality of life has flourished in recent years, there been an absence of information and focus on US consumers, their travel motivations or perceptions of wellness.
States Ms. Hoheb, Founder/CEO of Wellness Tourism Worldwide (WTW); “WTW’s mission is to improve well-being and economic growth through travel. This survey shines a spotlight on US consumer travel motivations and their perceptions on wellness. Wellness Tourism is good for consumers and good for business.”
Win great travel prizes including:
The grand prize winner will receive a three-night stay in an oceanfront guestroom at the luxurious Terranea Resort – a lush, 102-acre escape located south of Los Angeles on one of Southern California’s most coveted coastlines. One lucky winner will be awarded a Roam Ride’s Vespa tour of South Beach, while six other winners will each receive a Kuhi Comfort Travel Pillow and five winners will receive skincare travel kits from KleanSpa.
To take the survey, the web link is: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/SFB7CF7
Respondents must be US residents and must complete the 15-20 minute survey in its entirety to be eligible to win prizes. Researchers will summarize the data in aggregate and all responses will be kept confidential.
About Wellness Tourism Worldwide (WTW):
Wellness Tourism Worldwide is the only organization fully dedicated to improving well-being and economic development through travel by providing research, education, development & promotion to travel sellers, travel providers & industry stakeholders.
A Perfect Day in Portugal October 20th, 2011
I have to say, its nice to have friends in high places. Thanks to Joao Pinto Barbosa, President of the Portugese Spa Association, I had a fantastic day trip that he coordinated with his friends, Manual Atunes da Silva (introduced in the entry below) and Patricia Bandiera, Publisher & Partner of Estetica Viva magazine. We started in Ourense, Spain and drove in the morning to Northern Portugal’s wine country and landed at Vidago Palace, and on Conde Nast’s “Hot List” in May 2011. The property is spectacular! historic! grande! and if you are a history lover, lover of fine things. lover of aesthetics – this is the place for you! Lucky for Patricia and me that Manual is the Director of Mineral Water with Unicer, the parent company of Vidago Palace. We received a great insider tour of the water source, a private mineral water tasting, a bit of walking tour, and the new spa building designed by a notable contemporary architect – whose design is in stark contrast in its sleek lines and modern approach to the gilded finery and colorful historic design elements found throughout the palace.. New spa director, Maria, who had been onboard for 3 weeks was very accommodating and gave Patricia and I tour which I am saving for an article so sorry no details here! After we had a lovely Mediterranean lunch and we resumed our private tour with Manual on the golf course. Honestly, golf holds no interest to me but knowing this plays an important role to the property, I dutifully was prepared to learn about the course. I was pleasantly surprised as we rode golf carts around the property with much laugher and frivolity and it could not have been more fun! Then on to tour Pedras Selgadas where there was another Unicer property catering more to leisure travelers (where as Vidago is for the luxury traveler). Patricia and I headed over to the lovely garden area where there was a snack shop servicing – you guessed it – Super Bock! (Unicer’s main seller). It was a perfect day in Portugal and sadly it came to and end as all good thing too. However the memory will last a lifetime
Tags: Estetica Viva, Portugal,Portugese Spa Assocition, Unicer,Vidago Palace
Sommeliers for Mineral Water – Who Knew? Pedras Salgadas: Winner!October 18th, 2011
The great thing about travel is your always learning something new. While in Ourense, Spain, the new discovery was about mineral water sommeliers and competitions. I wouldn’t have known this had I not met Manuel Atunes Da Silva, Director of Quality for Mineral Water at Unicer , the largest Portuguese beer producer (Super Bock!) and also holds assets in the mineral water business. There brand is Pedras Salgadas which won an award at the Termatalia event.
Here’s a bit of history: The source of Agua de Pedras was found during the Romans period and some historic thermal ruins still can be found in the area today. In the 19th century, the Kings and Queens of Portugal visited Pedras Salgadas during their holidays and in 1871, a renowned Portuguese doctor identified the excellent characteristics of the water which continues to make history today. Pedras has unique natural properties. The natural mineralization process is enriched with minerals that are said to replenish the body, help digestion and enhances the natural flavors of food, much like wine.
Água das Pedras has won many awards, the first of which was in the International Exhibition in Vienna, Austria, in 1873, and most recently, it waas awarded by the International Taste & Quality Institute among others. What makes it so special? The water is sourced from rain and melting snow in the mountains of Trás-os-montes and is naturally carbonated.
So the next time you are offered mineral water…know that it is more than carbonated water in a bottle. Drink up and to your health!
BTW – From personal experience, Super Bock on a hot day in Portugal hits the spot. (Another form of wellness)
Enjoying a Super Bock during my Perfect Day in Portugal
Tags: mineral water, Pedras Salgadas
Termatalia in Ourense, Spain October 8th, 2011
It was a pleasure being invited to speak at this year’s Termatalia event in Ourense, Spain. This is a unique venue that brings together roughly 2,500 spa and wellness professionals from 35 countries and thousands of interested consumers. There is really nothing comparable in the US or that I know of abroad.
Global Spa and Wellness in concert with Wellness Tourism Worldwide was pleased to have two booths with USA representation from the following Convention Bureaus and Chambers of Commerce: Hot Springs, Arkansas, Calistoga, California and well as the Starwood Hotel Brand and non-profit CreatActivity. Termatalia graciously provided a Spanish speaker representative for WTW to inform consumers on our partner services in the USA who could not have been more accommodating, pleasant, professional and informed.
The speaker line-up was well-represented in both subject matter and geographical representation. I spoke on US Consumers as an emerging market to health and wellness tourism. You are welcome to download my presentation here. There was also education on mineral water and a sommelier to award the top tasting mineral waters. I did not know there were mineral water sommeliers (!) but I have to say, that I was interested to learn this.
Our Termatalia and Ourense hosts could not have been more hospitable and the event was well-attended and well-organized. Ourense has a rich history and is seeking ways to develop and promote itself as destination for wellness tourism.
Wellness Tourism Worldwide LaunchesJuly 11th, 2011 Dear Friends of Global Spa and Wellness,
I am delighted to announce the launch of Wellness Tourism Worldwide (WTW), an international trade alliance comprised of wellness and tourism businesses, organizations and institutions.
Wellness Tourism Worldwide is committed to providing awareness, research, education and promotion of wellness tourism and well-being travel. Seeking to fully integrate all aspects of wellness in a cohesive and balanced manner without over emphasizing one or several of the eight domains, we do this through engagement from leading experts in tourism, hospitality, healthcare, spa, wellness and corporate health.
WTW: Join, follow & engage!
All the Best,
Tags: adventure tourism, agri tourism, corporate health, Cultural Tourism, dimensions of wellness, eco tourism, faith tourism, medical tourism, ministry of health, ministry of tourism, quality of life, spa, spiritual tourism, sustainability, travel, well-being, well-being travel, wellness, wellness tourism worldwide, wttw
Psychological Well-Being and Coronary Heart DiseaseJune 27th, 2011
I stumbled across a very interesting study that basically ties optimism to better health in a very tangible way. The study was one in a series supported by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Pioneer Portfolio exploring “Positive Health”, an emerging concept that people also have health ASSETS (not only risks), which can be strengthened to produce a healthier life. These health assets include biological factors (ie., high heart rate variability), subjective factors (ie. optimism), and functional factors (i.e.) stable marriage.
This particular study asked the following: Does psychological well-being contribute to better cardiovascular health and less coronary heart disease (CHD)? Below is an excerpt from the study in Health Psychology published by American Psychological Association, May 2011
Researchers looked at the association between psychological well-being—specifically, emotional vitality and optimism—on CHD in middle-aged men and women. The participants were 7,942 British civil servants in the Whitehall II study measured at baseline and five years later.
Emotional vitality was defined as active engagement with the world, effective emotional regulation and an overall sense of well-being. Optimism was assessed by participants rating themselves on a scale of 1 to 6 in their response to the statement: “Over the next 5–10 years I expect to have more positive than negative experiences.” Numerous cardiovascular risk factors were measured including smoking, alcohol consumption, exercise, fruit and vegetable consumption and blood pressure/metabolic factors.
The researchers found that greater emotional vitality and optimism both were protective factors against CHD. Metabolic factors did not alter this finding, which was similar for men and women, and for individuals younger and older than 55.
Positive psychological well-being, desirable in itself, is a potential health asset that may have far-reaching consequences for cardiovascular health.
The emerging concept of Positive Health explores these questions and more to identify potential health assets associated with a healthier and longer life, lower health care costs, and improved prognosis when illness strikes.
Tags: coronary heart disease, health asset. positive health, health psychology, optimism,well-being, wellness
Evidence based therapies in Healing June 24th, 2011
Art therapy, pet therapy and prayer are three healing therapies that I would like to see more research, more programs, better access and more promotion.
There were some great studies done on the power of prayer - found on the National Institute of Health website, under NCCAM.
Art therapy has been around since the 1930’s and has been used in hospitals, private practice, community agencies, educational institutions, businesses and wellness centers. We are seeing more art in hospitals and healing environments and there is a reason for that. Art therapy is used for a variety of conditions and is a complementary therapy that is said to improve psychological and physiological states.
Pet therapy has had a lot of play in the media over the last 2 years, in the treatment of PTSD (post traumatic stress syndrome) for military veterans. There have been a lot of really good studies on this subject .See below
The study was designed to augment the Warrior in Transition Advancement Program. Warriors are enrolled in WINTAP as part of their occupational therapy and take a series of classes focused on further developing skills to manage stress and anger; build communication skills and relationships; maintain healthy living and increase organization and time management. By augmenting the current occupational therapy life skills classes with dogs, researchers will be able to provide data that will possibly add to the current success with WINTAP.
Tags: "art therapy", health, NCCAM, pet therpay, prayer, veterans, Wounded Warriors
Alternative Forms of Healing June 22nd, 2011 Having two blogs can be a little cumbersome, however, due to several colleagues asking me to repost earlier entries on forms of healing, I thought it would be of interest to include links here to some previous observations and interests in three categories:
Art and Healing: http://globalspaandwellness.blogspot.com/2009/06/photography-as-healing-art.html
Scuba in the treatment of PTSDhttp://globalspaandwellness.blogspot.com/2009/05/veterans-of-war-find-peace-and-healing.html
Meditation and Healing:http://globalspaandwellness.blogspot.com/2010/08/21-day-meditation-challenge-from-chopra.html
I am a firm believer in the various dimensions of wellness and quality of life indicators that go beyond the simple “mindy/body” mantra. Wellness is a continuous process that includes more than exercise and nutrition. The more we understand connecting the dots in our daily lives translates into well-being, we will see better health and contentment individually and collectively – positively affecting individuals, families, communities, states and nations.
Wouldn’t it be nice to see the next global report from the World Health Organization show better health and outcomes?