What do you get when you combine a wellness vacation with a “workcation”?
Answer: The “wellness sabbatical,” an emerging trend that provides time for sunrise yoga classes, meditation sessions, and spa treatments in addition to emails and Zoom calls.
A small but growing number of resorts are entering a market for wellness-minded workers who are struggling to completely go offline. The experience can even teach travelers how to balance work, play, and wellbeing after the trip is over.
Holidays that combine work and wellness
Hilton Head Health, a health and wellness resort on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, launched a program called WorkWell in late August. It is the resort’s first program to specifically include working hours as part of the itinerary.
“There’s a new concept for a wellness sabbatical floating around,” said Jessica Brantley, senior vice president of sales and marketing for the resort. “The idea is not to completely unplug the plug from work as that just isn’t realistic in today’s world.”
WorkWell costs $ 3,800 per week and is designed for a minimum stay of two weeks.
Courtesy Hilton Head Health
The program allows guests to work on weight loss and wellness goals without taking time off, Brantley said.
Participants live in private villas that are equipped with high-speed internet and wireless printers. The schedules are flexible. Activities such as aqua fitness courses and motivational lectures are planned around main working hours.
Why unplugging the power cord may not be necessary
Turning it off seems impossible right now, said David Rock, CEO of NeuroLeadership Institute, an organization that studies neuroscience and business management.
“Many people who still have jobs are in industries where the workload is higher than normal and people are under pressure to perform,” Rock told CNBC’s Global Traveler. “For many of these leaders, 2020 means an intense increase in workload – under more pressure than ever before.”
WorkWell includes all meals, snacks, and $ 500 credit that can be used for cooking classes.
Courtesy Hilton Head Health
Unplugged retreats are one way to combat burnout, but “extended periods of reduced workload” can also work, he said. Rock cited his own habit of limiting his work to three days a week – with four long weekends – each August.
“This reduced workload for a whole month can have long-term benefits in terms of more space to think about big thoughts – and more possible than a piece of free time,” he said. “When the workload is lower … and accompanied by physical activity like hiking, this can be beneficial and feasible, especially for managers.”
Lose weight, but don’t part
Aidan O’Sullivan, general manager of Ireland’s Kilkea Castle, said the hotel’s spa sabbaticals had become more popular “in these strange times”.
“We had a number of guests who stayed with us to complete a major project or put the finishing touches on it,” he said. “These guests in particular will then experience a complete escape from work.”
An hour’s drive from Dublin, Kilkea Castle is home to executives who stay on the property to prepare for major work events.
Courtesy Kilkea Castle
The 12th century fortress offers a weekly package that allows guests to work in the fortress for three days Albatros Suitewhich comes with a webcam in the boardroom, a projector and a large drop-down screen. The stay includes three meals a day, sessions in the spa and Thermal suite, a tennis or golf coaching session and access to the adjacent forest of Mullaghreelan Wood.
The weekly flat rates are € 2,450 ($ 2,890) for one person and € 3,500 ($ 4,126) for two people.
Sabbaticals for friends and companies
Tonya Leigh, a self-image coach, has taken a wellness sabbatical with friends and herself.
“While I am an advocate of these sabbaticals myself, I recently took those business trips away with others,” she said. “The energy of being surrounded by friends when I was offline allowed me to find a new kind of productivity and not feel as planned in a new space.”
Velas Resorts’ group takeover program or “corpcation” is available at the Los Cabos and Puerto Vallarta locations.
Courtesy of Velas Resorts
Some hotels hope that companies will take action.
Velas Resorts invites companies to rent two of their resorts in Mexico for an employee “corporation”. Employees can be more productive and creative with morning meditation sessions and afternoon mezcal tastings while providing complete privacy for meetings and team building for less than $ 10,000 a night.
Anxiety with (or without) our devices
According to former US President Barack Obama’s half-sister, Maya Soetoro-Ng, he retired to Bali for a few months to find a peaceful refuge “where there were no telephones” to follow his 1995 memoir “Dreams from my father “finished writing.
This, of course, happened before everyone was talking about cell phones, before apps and the ubiquitous internet, and before “fear of smartphone disconnection” was an issue College study.
Now even many adventurous travelers would not leave home without their phones. Those who also need computer monitors and printing services within easy reach can consider Destination Kohler’s “Work Well” program, which kicks off this November.
The Kohler Destination is located in eastern Wisconsin near the village of Kohler, which is where the global kitchen and bathroom company is located.
Program guests stay overnight at the resort Inn on Woodlake in rooms with workplaces, meditation chairs, dumbbells, diffusers for essential oils and salt lamps. Room deliveries determine the working day: gourmet coffee baskets and breakfast in the morning as well as “clean craft cocktails” from the superfood juicer on site at happy hour.
Christine Loose, vice president of accommodation and wellness at Kohler, told CNBC that she expected the new package to appeal to a younger audience looking to balance work and wellness.
“During the summer months we saw an increase in both midweek stays and the number of guests with their laptops and magazines,” she said.
Guests can take unlimited yoga classes – there are more than 74 per week – and spend time hiking, fishing, canoeing, or playing golf. There are four golf courses at the resort, each of which was named one of America’s 100 Best Public Golf Courses by Golf Digest last year.
Prices start at $ 346 per night.