Updated: Feb 22
As travelers start to emerge they will find that retreat destinations are reinventing and redesigning almost everything they offer.
FetahWaterfall Villas - Costa Rica
A new perspective on wellbeing is forming
Wellness that is focused and meaningful will include plant medicine therapies and journeys, mind-body fitness, healthy delicious food, sleep therapies, quiet solitude, inner power, vision quests, new types of healing treatments, and mental health.
No longer are the one-size-fits-all packages of anything sufficient. In the future it will be about creative, personalized, and unique experiences that one person or a small group can share in.
The idea of wellbeing will be evident from the minute one enters the property
It's about "travel for what?"
Mass-produced, stuffy tourist-style accommodations with the typical day trip to tourist spots are a thing of the past. It's now about experiences that are distinct, immersive, and difficult to attain.
Traveler's needs are changing - time-off will be taken to a whole new level. Experiences at retreat locations providing participation and emersion into self and changes lives forever are the future.
One of the biggest developments are medicinal psychedelic plant medicine retreats with mushrooms and other plant adaptogens hosted by well-trained guides and authentic healers. The set, setting, intention and integration is what changes lives . . . more often, it's no longer about partying with drugs. It's about healing oneself and connecting with the earth.
The Future of Spa Wellness . . .
The old routine of soulless perfunctory corporate-like spa treatments of the past are no longer sufficient.
In the future, distancing will be on the minds of guests - maybe forever. Spas and mainly the therapists will need to establish trust and a true connection that goes beyond the normal welcome.
A herbal treatment especially designed for me is mixed with local ingredients
Watch for pretreatment experiences that are substantial and meaningful to set the stage for what's to come. No longer should a guest be ushered into sitting rooms to flip through magazines while waiting for their name or number to be called.
Massage therapy is the most popular treatment - however, the 60-minute massage is most often broken down to 50-minutes. Fifteen minutes is taken off for the guest to "get ready" and for the spa to reset the room after you leave. It feels so wrong. Fifty minutes is just about the amount of time a person needs to become relaxed … and then the treatment stops!
In the future, massage will become a full 60 to 80 minutes - and moving towards the optimum of 2 hours for signature treatments.
Look for healing treatments with mild psychedelics for relaxation you while experience an enlightening 3 hour vision quest journey
New inspiration to book wellness treatments will gain popularity as meaningful treatment menus are brought to your room along with samples of products. New and interesting health and spa products may also be available from charming amenity bars (for purchase).
Informative spa menus will share the “why” of the treatment, where the ingredients come from, and what they do. Currently, most of this information is left out.
And even more special, properties will start sharing a bio of the therapist so a connection and trust is established long before the treatment starts.
Find new glam tents and room design where beautifully choreographed small experiences slowly unfold from the minute you enter. Find aspects of the spa with wellness-based influences everywhere from bedding and pillows to special music faintly playing in the background.
Wise retreat properties will become more educated on not promoting healthy food unless it really is.
In a food bar within guest rooms, one may find healthy snacks that really are healthy, not just the trivial, unpalatable “not-good-for-you” inedible items found currently in many locations.
Menus that proclaim health but are prepared with unhealthy or rancid oils as a base is not only irresponsible but false advertising. In the future, look for pure based offerings with ingredients made with integrity and not just another pretty menu.
When arriving at a retreat with high expectations of promised health and then see single plastic bottles among other unhealthy habits speak so loudly.
Resorts of the future will not tolerate plastic. Instead, a guest may be given a personal water-bottle to be refilled at stations throughout the property.
A special touch would be filtering systems where diamonds and precious gems completely change the water structure according to different wellness concerns.
In certain locations, (where allowed), you may order a chocolate treat at night with special aphrodisiac and adaptogen or psychedelic ingredients that enhance love making, opening the heart, or lucid dreaming qualities.
The future of retreating is something to look forward to!