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PHOTO: JOHN ATHIMARITIS

PHOTOS: COURTESY OF DORADO BEACH, A RITZ CARLTON RESERVE

INDUSTRY INSIGHTS

Nature is integral to the Ritz-Carlton Reserve Spa Botanico in Puerto Rico

Immersing oneself in nature is a real and ongoing trend

There is already an increased interest in cold-water practices and some spa and wellness properties are offering cold-water swims which are psychically and physiologically very powerful. Italy’s Grand Hotel Tremezzo went beyond forest bathing to introduce a Tree-Hugging Retreat, a three-hour experience which involves hugging and leaning on trees.

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SPA BUSINESS HANDBOOK 2021 – 2022

exemplify nature include the sprawling Mohonk Mountain House in New York’s Hudson Valley; The Ritz-Carlton Reserve Spa Botanico in Puerto Rico, the brainchild of spa designer Tracy Lee; the spa at Six Senses Douro Valley, Portugal, conceived by Clodagh; and the Lush Geo Spa at Four Seasons Resort Langkawi, nestled within Southeast Asia’s first UNESCO Global Geopark. ● ■ About the author: Mary Bemis is the editorial director of InsidersGuidetoSpas.com and co-founder of Organic Spa and American Spa magazines. She is the co-editor of the book Nature Through Her Eyes: Art & Literature by Women.

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PHOTO: CHRISBRISCOE

Thierry Malleret, economist and co-author of the book, Ten Good Reasons to Go for a Walk, reports that an app called NatureQuant can monitor, quantify, and evaluate natural elements and exposure to nature. In other words, you can now track the time you spend in the great outdoors much like you count your steps.

All of this simply points to the real and ongoing trend, for those consumers who can afford it, to literally get into nature. As we careen into an increasingly degraded environmental future, the value of natural healing will only appreciate. There are astonishing new spa and wellness projects which give me hope. A few which entice me include San Francisco’s Alchemy Springs Communal Bathhouse. Designed by Ollie Lundberg, it infuses the history of the original Sutro Baths with a modern biophilic approach. Also Saudi Arabia’s ambitious Desert Rock project, created by Oppenheim Architecture and the Maldives’ Areka Spa at Joali Being, a nature-immersive wellbeing retreat situated on its own island. A few of my favourite spas which