Well-Being Travel Conference 2012
Wellness has long been a priority at the five-diamond Phoenician resort in Scottsdale, Ariz., site of the Well-Being and Medical Travel Conference in June. The property has been home to the Centre for Well-Being since it opened in 1988.
The center offers an impressive menu of spa treatments. But it is The Phoenician’s wellness programming that “sets it apart” from other resorts, said David Richard, director of sales and marketing.
“We can customize the program based on individual needs. For example, we recently had a guest who was very much into stretching versus a traditional work out. We were able to bring in a specialist to accommodate that one guest.
“We also do unique things – like yoga classes on the lawn – in one of the most beautiful setting anyone can imagine.”
Body, mind, spirit
Wellness is a big umbrella. “It can be physical, spiritual or educational,” Richard said.
“We have a package that includes a room in our Canyon Suites and hikes up Camelback Mountain accompanied by guides who explain the Sonora desert. We have a spectacular cactus garden with a curator who explains the different plants.”
Other packages include meditation sessions, tai chi classes, even a tarot card reading – along with more traditional inclusions like massage and facials.
Employee wellness trend
The Phoenician’s wellness approach begins with its own employees, said Richard. “We have a wellness coach on the property. She consults with employees about their diets and health needs.
“We have Fit Fridays where we send an email to employees about our cafeteria menus and how many calories they might be consuming. That instills a mindset that is then extended to guests.”
“We’re not alone in that approach,” Richard said. “A lot of companies are really promoting wellness. It makes for better employees and, on the bottom line, it helps keep insurance premiums lower at a time when that is getting astronomical.”
$90 million resort redo
Attendees at the June 20-21 Well-Being and Medical Travel Conference will find a resort that has benefited from a $90 million investment in its facilities over the last four years. Suites have been upgraded at a cost of $170,000 each, and all existing meeting space will be renovated later this year.
Upgrades to the suites included: DVD sound systems; iPod docking stations; wired and wireless Internet access from suite desks, and 42- to 47-inch flat TVs.
The 15,000-square-foot Camelback Ballroom, which opened late in 2010, features a separate valet entrance; two desks for satellite hotel check-in and groups registration, a 9,000-sqaure-foot plaza. Ballroom windows overlook Camelback Mountain.
The Centre for Well-Being also was revitalized, with new carpet and décor, sound system and furniture, including zero-gravity chairs in the Meditation Atrium.
Never lost in the crowd
“We are unique in that we are a luxury property that can host and feed groups of more than 800 people,” Richard said.
“And although we are slightly more than half groups, as far as our mix, guests who are not part of groups do not feel overwhelmed by them.” He noted that groups have a separate arrival point and check-in area, and all meeting space is separate from the lobby.
Also unique to The Phoenician are its Canyon Suites – a separate building housing 40 suites and 20 guest rooms. The unit has its own concierge and check-in.
Both the Phoenician and the Canyon Suites are rated AAA Five Diamond.
Well-Being Travel Conference 2012
Travel agents will learn more about wellness and medical travel at the Well-Being and Medical Travel Conference 2012, June 20-21, at the Phoenician. The conference is co-sponsored by Well-Being Travel and Travel Market Report.
For information, or to learn more, visit www.well-beingtravelconference.com.