Have you ever caught yourself saying, “I need a vacation from my vacation?” I’m pretty sure most of us have been in that boat after returning home from what was supposed to be a relaxing trip. Turns out a ‘wellness vacation’ is possible to achieve and in this month’s episode of “Your Health”, we visit the Well & Being Spa at the Fairmont Scottsdale Princess Resort to learn more about the growing trend of putting your health and well-being at the very center of your vacation. The thought of coming back from a vacation feeling healthier and more relaxed than when I checked in? Sign me up!
Don’t Worry, Be Happy
Among the wellness travel trends for 2018 are what are known as ‘happy retreats.’ As travel priorities shift toward experiential as opposed to material, it’s no surprise that this type of travel is inspired by the desire to create and have meaningful experiences. Studies continue to show that experiences, not things, make people happier. Activities such as morning hikes and beach circuit training promote the production of serotonin (the ‘happy hormone’) and make great additions to any happy retreat schedule.
Silence is Golden
While digital detox trips were last year’s trend, 2018 isn’t just about shutting off your digital device; it’s about being silent, literally. Think silent dinners, meditative walks on the beach or in the forest and blindfolded massages to mute multiple senses. In this busy age of chatter and distractions, perhaps a bit of true silence is exactly what our mind, bodies and spirits need.
SO with that being said, I’ve added a new destination to my bucket list: Simple Peace, located in the ancient Umbrian city of Assisi, Italy. This beautiful center sits in the rolling hills overlooking acres of olive groves and offers nurturing meditation retreats focused on connecting people to peace and beauty. Sounds, and looks, absolutely glorious.
Food is More than Fuel
The American Heart Association suggests that sugar is one of the leading causes of heart disease. As if that’s not bad enough, sugar also breeds bad bacteria in your gut. Yuck! With a majority of our immune system being controlled in the belly, it’s no surprise that an overgrowth of bacteria triggered by too much sugar and unhealthy fats will have negative affects on our health. Learning to improve your health through the foods you choose is key to improving overall mood and well-being, better digestive health and weight loss. Booking a wellness stay that helps you learn and experience mindful eating is a great way to helping you transform into a healthier you.
Buildings that make us healthier and happier? Yep, it’s such thing, and it’s a trend known as ‘wellness architecture.’ Providing spaces that are structurally beautiful, sustainable and that encourage movement and mindfulness can be a health booster, according to studies. So it’s no surprise that spas and retreat destinations integrate everything from ‘living’ buildings and walls with live plants and greenery, to nontoxic materials and textures such as marble and wood into their designs.
A wonderful example of this type of architecture set in motion is at Arizona’s Princess Resort’s Well & Being Spa where an outdoor area of the spa is inspired by the iconic, beautiful Havasupai Falls – a hidden oasis located deep in the Grand Canyon. Many of the spa’s treatments make use of their Havasupai waterfall including their Havasupai Falls Rejuvenation, a 120-minute treatment that infuses ingredients all regionally authentic to the Southwest.
It’s clear that more people are wanting to use their vacation time to go deeper into the wellness and fitness practices that they love, but are hard to fit in at home. Depending on your needs, you can decide what type of wellness retreat or getaway would be the most beneficial. Above all – unplug, relax and enjoy!
Stay healthy, my friends!
Erica Cardenas (@ericacardenas1)