In preparation for the upcoming Global Spa and Wellness Summit (GSWS), which will take place in less than 45 days in Aspen, Colorado, registered delegates are asked to submit short briefing papers on exactly that topic. Each two-page briefing answers five questions and is aggregated into a printed report that each delegate receives at the Summit. (Each briefing can be viewed on the GSWS website beginning in June.) Continue reading
I rarely do this, however am making an exception in this case because I feel it is that important. Rather than just giving you a link to an article, I am retyping the entire article here for you (with attribution, of course). It is from today’s (Feb 20, 2012) Manila Standard Daily newspaper and titled, Tourism plan zeroes in on ‘wellness.’
The reason this is important is because it shows that what the research from the Global Spa and Wellness Summit has been predicting, is, in fact now happening. I don’t think many people really “got it” before because it was more theoretical however this is reality. The spa industry should be all over this – and making sure that government entities recognize how valuable it would be for them to help promote their country’s spa tourism.
Tourism plan zeroes in on ‘wellness’
Medical tourism is likely to take a backseat to health and wellness programs because the Aquino administration intends to focus on those booming tourism sectors, an official said Sunday.
Tourism Undersecretary Daniel Corpuz said most of the Philippines’ major hospitals were internationally accredited but only a few foreigners were going here for treatment.
“So we would rather concentrate on non-invasive procedures or the health and wellness [programs] than procedural operations.” Corpuz told reporters at the sidelines of the National Tourism Statistics conference 2012 in Manila.
He made the statement even as Tourism Secretary Ramon Jimenez said his department would be pushing the municipality of Oslob in Cebu as a tourist destination because of its famous whale sharks. Tourists visiting the area and Donsol in Sorsogonin Sorsogon could swim with the giant but docile creatures.
Corpuz described medical tourism was a complicated market segment and therefore hard to push. The Tourism Department launched its medical tourism program in 2007 to boost the country’s tourism industry. It pushed aesthetic surgery, complex orthopedic procedures and cancer and cardiovascular care among other things.
The department said the country’s beaches and resorts, world-class facilities and friendly people would entice foreigners to come here for treatment. Macon Ramos-Araneta.
Many have said that the spa and wellness industry is seriously lacking in innovation and needs some spark. So, the Global Spa & Wellness Summit would like to bring you a new – and hopefully innovative way – to ignite the conversation!
Meet “The Weekender.”
This weekly communication is designed to start one conversation about one topic with the entire global spa and wellness universe. For the time being, we’ll be zeroing in on the topics of Innovation and Imagination.
- All content is linked to a blog, where you can join the conversation by posting comments and sharing ideas (which is most definitely encouraged).
- And, for a taste of things to come, look for a comparison of the world’s “most innovative” countries and companies, views from expert innovators, a few TED presentations on the topic, advice on how to grow our individual imaginative skillsets, and a general spotlight on what people are writing and saying about innovation right now. (No one can deny that “innovation “ and “imagination” are hot topics making headlines!)
Earlier this morning, I spoke with John Kao, the author of Innovation Nation and a confirmed keynote speaker at the upcoming Global Spa & Wellness Summit taking place in Aspen, Colorado. Here are a few things from my research and our conversation that caught my attention:
- John calls himself an “Innovation Activist”
- In this interview, which I encourage you to read, he defines “innovation” and explains why it is so important for the future of our world: “I define innovation as a set of capabilities that are possessed by individuals, teams, countries or geographies that allow the continuous realization of a desired future.”
- John’s book Innovation Nation includes an analysis of which countries can be considered the most innovative (hint, think Singapore and Finland) and he talks about the need to innovate the very “process of innovation,” which I find extremely interesting.
- In a recent NY Times article about his “performance and talk” at the recent World Economic Forum in Davos, they mentioned John’s use of Jazz music to demonstrate the tension in the innovation process between training/discipline and improvised creativity that always fuels new ideas and products.
- His unique perspective is likely a result of his very eclectic background that includes a degree in philosophy from Yale College, an MD in psychiatry from Yale University and a degree from Harvard Business School in management. He is also a Tony nominated film producer and a jazz pianist who studied under Frank Zappa.
- Oh, and did I mention he loves spas?
Doing things differently is what innovation is all about. Just as I was inspired by John, I hope that you will be motivated – by this email – to join the conversation on how this industry could benefit from true innovation and a healthy dose of imagination. Or sit back, relax with a cup of coffee (or herbal tea) and just be a sponge. After all it is the weekend. What better time to soak up something new?
At this year’s Global Spa Summit in Bali, we were treated to several short social networking/technology talks from my favorite tech guru Marc Smith from Connected Action. Marc is the only presenter I know in the technology space who might also make it as a standup comedian! Click here to access a short 10 minute video of Marc on the topic of online health and fitness/wellness gadgets. Skim through the notes Engaging Business via Technology: Sensors – All the Rage! , or check out Marc’s powerpoint presentation.
Marc started off showing us a GSS 2011 Social Network Map. It showed Liz Terry (Managing Director, Leisure Media) as the most connected social networker at the GSS; everyone who had tweeted about GSS was on the map as well.
Marc went on to introduce us to some medical sensors. The following is a list of the ones he thought spas should check out. It’s a handy list that will help you get up-to-date quickly. (Well, as up-to-date as possible for now.) I think it is safe to say the one that got the most buzz was the the sensor you pee on and then it analyzes the effect of your diet and exercise efforts. Have fun exploring!
- Quantified Self.org: Helps to keep detailed records of your own health and wellness
- Fitbit.com: You clip the device to yourself, and when you walk by your computer, the data transfers automatically.
- Bodybugg: Uses specialized sensors to track calories burned; manages calories consumed via a web based program; tracks your steps with a built-in pedometer
- Runkeeper: will tweet “Mark has just run 4.5 km”
- Nike + iPod: Tracks how fast you run and socializes this. Gives you encouragement from friends to keep at it, it also satisfies any kind of competitive urge.
- Body media: Keeps track of weight loss activity and encourages you to keep going!
- Zeo headband: You simply sleep with it, and it tracks your sleep cycle.
- Tweet What You Eat: A twitter-based food diary. Use Twitter to track what you eat by ‘tweeting’ food items to your personal food diary on the web.
- Meal Snap: iPhone app that lets you take pictures of your food, and auto-magically get back calorie and caption information.
- Lose It!: iPhone application that helps you to stay on track each day by recording your food and exercise while staying within your budget.
- Ovi: Wellness diary, using the “experience sampling” methodology.
- WellApps: A website full of applications to assist in your quest for wellness.
- BodyKey: Take it to the bathroom and urinate on it; diagnoses you
- GoogleHealth: With a Google Health account, you can store, manage and share all of your health and wellness information in one central place. It’s available from Google at no charge.
- Microsoft Health Vault: Similar to GoogleHealth it is an online health tool and device directory.
- CureTogether and PatientsLikeMe: Helps to connect you with someone else who suffers from your condition; essentially a support system.
- FourSquare badges: Unlocking badges is very motivating to people; they enjoy earning status markers.
My twitter address: @susieellis
As I was talking with some friends the other day about our upcoming NewBeauty SpaFinder: The Guide to Global Spa, Wellness & Beauty, a thought occurred to me. In the midst of all the excitement and work we’ve been doing, we hadn’t really taken the time to share the story of how the partnership between SpaFinder and NewBeauty came about.
The idea began with a discussion that Peter and I had while taking a morning walk last year. We were talking about the fact that SpaFinder would be celebrating 25 years of business in 2011. We thought revitalizing the design of our annual directory would be a great way to mark this milestone and anniversary. But who could we entrust to uphold our standards and understand our presence as a leader in the spa industry?
NewBeauty was the magazine that came to mind. I thought that the publication had great aesthetic style and an unparalleled approach to covering beauty content–much like SpaFinder does with spa content. They touch upon everything beauty related, from high performance-products to innovative procedures; NewBeauty truly educates the audience of beauty enthusiasts.
Peter reminded me that he knew Adam Sandow, the founder and owner of NewBeauty’s parent company Sandow Media. After our initial meeting with the Sandow team took place–as they say–the rest is history. Things evolved quite naturally; both parties realized that the synergies between the two publications make for a win/win. It seemed only logical to bring together our brand as the spa authority with NewBeauty’s brand as the beauty authority.
Below I’ve outlined the results of our meetings and what you all have to look forward to.
- Each issue of NewBeauty magazine will have a SpaFinder section (think magazine within a magazine) that includes beautiful spa photography and spa editorial. I am working closely with their editorial team on content to ensure that the spa coverage is on the cutting-edge. This section will be an ideal place for spas and spa products to advertise. The first issue will debut in the 2010 Fall/Winter edition of NewBeauty.
- The annual NewBeauty SpaFinder: The Guide to Global Spa, Wellness & Beauty will have access to all of NewBeauty’s distribution outlets–including newsstands, spas, private airports and select retailers–for its launch in November (around the same time of year that we had always produced our directory). The Guide will be debuting at ISPA and will be available for the holidays when people become especially enthused about browsing beautiful photos of spas and planning spa vacations.
My desk is piled high with wonderful spa concepts that I’m working with the NewBeauty editorial team on, and my entire month of August is pretty much blocked out to focus on spa coverage for both the annual Guide as well as the SpaFinder section in NewBeauty. We incorporated a redesign to the property profiles, and the editorial coverage spans an array of content.
A few of the categories we’re exploring are: Nutrition, Health and Wellness; Beauty Around the World (including indigenous treatments); Energy Treatments; Peaceful Settings at Home; Fitness; Spa Trends; and, of course, Products. It’s a work in progress, and updates are made daily.
I hope this letter helps explain the SpaFinder/NewBeauty relationship and why I think that this is so exciting for consumers and the entire spa and wellness industry. Please don’t hesitate to get in touch if you have any questions or even suggestions of what spa editorial you might like to see in future issues.
P.S. Peter just proofed this letter for me and suggested I mention that the deadline for spas to be listed in the annual directory/guide has just passed. If you are still interested though, feel free to call him directly at 212-716-1210 or email email@example.com asap. Did I mention that he is the sales person of our duo?
My twitter address: @susieellis