by James Ruggia
Last updated: 9:39 AM ET, Fri December 5, 2014
PHOTO: The Six Senses Laamu just completed a set of improvements. (All photos courtesy of Six Senses)
According to the Global Wellness Institute, global wellness tourism is now a $494 billion business and it grew 74 percent faster than tourism overall from 2012 to 2013. Six Senses Hotels, Resorts and Spas began in 1995 and has been on a steep growth curve ever since. Currently, it manages nine resorts and 27 spas across Asia, the Middle East, the Americas and Europe, but it's set a goal to double in size over the next three years.
The company will open resorts in Chengdu, Portugal and the Seychelles and spas at Muscat's Ritz-Carlton Al Bustan Palace in February; Marbella's Marbella Club in May; the Evason Club & Spa Pune in June and on the Greek island of Mykonos at The Belvedere in November. In total, the brand will have 18 properties and 33 spas when this current phase of expansion is completed.
This brand of luxury appeals to travelers who are looking for a full indulgence of the senses to the point that as the first five find serenity that sixth sense can find its own indulgence. The company chooses some of the most exotic destinations imaginable and the full experience combines the cultural and the indulgent, especially when the spa treatments use local ingredients and local treatments. There's also strong environmental element that extends the "wellness" to the destination.
The Six Senses Con Dao in Vietnam recently was cited by HotelsCombined.com as a top eco-friendly resort. It's the first five-star resort located on Vietnam's untouched archipelago islands and it was built using only sustainable materials with such design elements as maximized airflow to reduce A/C. Its restaurants, and its spa, use only locally grown foods and ingredients.
The Six Senses Evason Club and Spa in Pune, coming next June, is about 220 miles from Mumbai, Pune is the state of Maharashtra's second largest city. A Fascinating destination all by itself, Maharashtra is home to tropical forests, tiger reserves, mountain ranges, about 450 miles of Arabian Sea beaches, such UNESCO World Heritage Sites as the Ajanta and Ellora Cave complexes.
The hotel will be located about 20 minutes from downtown Pune as part of the Evason Pune Belmondo project. Located approximately 20 minutes from downtown Pune, the Evason by Six Senses will manage the entire 69,000 square foot club house which includes two restaurants, meeting room, banquet hall, kids' area spread over two levels, games rooms and library. The facility also incorporates a gym, yoga studio, pool, several indoor and outdoor relaxation spaces and a spa with eight treatment rooms, Hammam and changing rooms and more.
The Mykonos at The Belvedere is one of the boutiques hotels that are restoring Greek tourism. Set in a central location in the Chora, the property's Six Senses Spa is scheduled to open next November. Portugal's Six Senses Spa at Penha Longa Resort is located in a 19th century palace within a 545-acre national Park with, two golf courses about 16 miles from downtown Lisbon. It's also a 10-minute drive from the beaches of Estoril and Cascais.
PHOTO: Portugal's Six Senses Spa at Penha Longa Resort is located in a 19th century palace within a 545-acre national Park.
The Six Senses Zil Pasyon on Felicite Island in the Seychelles is a private island resort located outside of the cyclone belt, an increasingly essential virtue. The resort is comprised of 28 one-bedroom villas, two two-bedroom villas and 17 private residences, all with private pools.
Six Senses Qing Cheng Mountain is the only resort located adjacent to the UNESCO World Heritage Site in the Chinese province of Sichuan. The 113-suite and-villa resort uses regional design motifs. Due to open next year, the Six Senses Mont Blanc, France is a 32-suite alpine resort located atop Mont d'Arbois and with more than 280 miles of ski runs. In 2016, Six Senses will open properties in Bhutan, Taiwan, St Lucia, Bali, Tunisia
The Six Senses Laamu, a private island resort in the Maldives, just completed a renovation that enhanced the design of its villas, added a main pool and a sixth dining outlet. Many villas received private plunge pools and other improvements. Sip Sip, a new F&B outlet, features a sunken bar and adjacent poolside seating.
Six Senses, like Banyan Tree, is one of those companies to watch if you want to keep up with the direction that luxury wellness travel is taking.
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