The travel and wellness industries proactively work to stay in tune with a fluctuating social and cultural environment. Travelers are increasingly conscious of their impact, both on the environment and their own health. As emerging trends mold the future, we’ve forecasted the shifts in the industry to look out for this year!
What’s Out: Green Guilt | What’s In: Waste Warriors
Sustainability efforts are timeless but haven’t lived up to the necessary standards. In the wake of the cautionary report from the UN on cataclysmic global climate change, hotels are ramping up their determinations to lower their carbon footprint and eliminate excess waste into the environment. AccorHotels has robust commitments for 2020, including a 30 percent decrease in food waste and 100 percent participation from its properties on sustainable food production. In Zambia, Africa, Bushcamp Company’s Mfuwe Lodge runs a ‘worm farm’ where kitchen and organic waste is composted down to produce an organic fertilizer. The compost is used for their tree planting programs in the surrounding villages. Europe’s leading wellness and medical health resort, Grand Resort Bad Ragaz, saves 800,000 liters (211,338 gallons) of heating oil annually. 80 percent of what is needed to heat the resort is extracted from thermal water – sourced from Tamina Gorge in Bad Ragaz, Switzerland – that flows through the various swimming pools on site. Westin Grand Cayman Seven Mile Beach Resort & Spa, occupying on the largest span of the famed Seven Mile Beach, has done away with all plastic straws throughout the resort from the beach bar to the new Catboat Lobby Bar. The resort chose to replace all plastic straws with biodegradable, environmentally-friendly paper straws. Similarly, Montage Laguna Beach in southern California sources sustainable products, including wax packaging for bathroom amenities and bamboo toothbrushes. Snuggled in the Pacific Northwest, the Nines in Portland, Oregon is a LEED Silver Certified hotel that endeavors to stay in par with one of the greenest cities in the country. The Nines has implemented sustainability initiatives including an 80 percent recycling rate, energy-saving thermostats, honey production from the rooftop beehives, a rooftop garden with water collection system, and more.
What’s Out: FOMO (Fear of Missing Out | What’s In: JOMO (Joy of Missing Out)
With the popularity of Instagram and other photo sharing platforms, it’s easy to feel left out of the excitement. But there’s a developing movement of saying “good riddance” to that. Travelers are searching to disconnect when on the go and totally immerse themselves in the joy of missing out. Gstaad Palace is tucked away in serene Switzerland and guests can upgrade their isolation in the Walig Hut. Cut off from the world, the hut is nestled in the Alps with breathtaking views over Gstaad, a private chef for their culinary needs, and negligible cell service. Take off to a secluded island in Maine, where the technology free Chebeague Island Inn is the ideal haven to decompress with TV-free rooms. The local artwork and ocean views make for the perfect change of scenery. To unplug from the stressors of reality, refresh and recharge in Santa Fe, New Mexico. With 70 tranquil acres of gardens and a scenic, encompassing desert, Sunrise Springs Spa Resort showcases the beauty of the Southwest. The resort’s creative offerings encourage self-reflection and celebrating the moment, with classes ranging from creating Mini Meditation Gardens, Vision Boards, and Chakra Essential Oils, to turndown amenities which include a personal journal, tea and Mini Book of Mindfulness. If wellness is the bread and butter of the escape, Casa Madrona Hotel & Spa in Sausalito, California fosters some of the most revolutionary advancements in wellness technology. It is the first hotel to ever provide Eight Sleep Smart Beds that self-warm, report on sleep data, and wake you in your lightest sleep. Muse 2 meditation headbands are worn to provide real-time feedback during quiet time.
What’s Out: Girls Getaway Galore | What’s In: Wave of Women’s Solo Travel
When it comes to female travel, programming has historically been more accommodating to groups, but the tides are changing in an age of empowerment. This year, hotels are embracing the wave of Female Solo Travel with curated amenities that bolster today’s jet setting businesswoman and women with wanderlust. The Duchess Suite room service is tailored to ladies staying at DUKES London, a stone-throw away from Buckingham Palace. Guests are escorted to their room by a female attendant, offered fresh flowers, fitted robes, and lifestyle magazines in their room, and provided a complimentary in-room blow dry by a Dyson hair stylist. MGallery has noted the drastic upswing in female travel and introduced the “Inspired by Her” campaign with thoughtful gestures and touches devoted to a woman’s wellness. The basic offer includes beauty creams, appropriately sized bathrobes and slippers, tights, and signature cocktails with a feminine pizzazz. At the Mountain Lodges of Peru, the woman with a passion for adventure can satisfy her wanderlust. With an a la carte itinerary, solo travelers can choose from hiking, meeting professional women artists and cooking classes, the perfect combination of journey and cultural immersion. To document these escapades without the assistance of a companion,Flytographer provides premium quality photo services for travelers. Whether it be Copenhagen, London, or Bologna, Flytograher will accompany her to the ends of the earth and capture every meaningful moment.
What’s Out: Eating Out | What’s In: Eating In
When traveling, the temptation to dine out for every meal can be deliciously irresistible, but – with the rising initiative for eating healthy and staying cost conscious – that is no longer the case. Travelers have encouraged their commitment to health regimens when away from home and the hospitality industry is taking note, introducing services and amenities to make eating in both personalized and easily accessible. In Hawaii, Montage Kapalua Bay‘s ‘Ohana Cooking Class conveniently takes place in the comfort of the resort’s guestrooms. Families, couples, and groups alike can enroll in a private poke cooking class and learn the recipe and rich history of this classic dish. At the Carillon Miami Wellness Resort, the interactive ‘Grocery Guru‘ furnishes guests with expert knowledge on label reading and product comparison. The Guru will embark on a grocery store outing with guests where they will learn which products to purchase, how to avoid unhealthy choices and simple ways to prepare meals. Guests can prepare their own cuisine in the comfort of their in-suite kitchen. Domio apartment hotels are each constructed with state-of-the-art kitchens for food preparation. All suites are equipped with utensils and appliances so the drive-thru can be skipped for a night. If the obligation of curating a meal plan for a trip is too taxing, YO1 Wellness Center has a diet personalized to guests’ individual needs. At the wellness facility in the New York Catskills, an Ayurvedic Diet crafted by Chef Gaurav Navin is implemented to provide the body with highly nutritious, easily processed food. All the ingredients are sustainably grown and locally sourced. The Tryall Club in Montego Bay, Jamaica also removes the stress of cooking with each villa coming complete with a personal chef. Prior to arrival, guests will connect with the villa’s chef to discuss nutritional preferences and dietary restrictions, ensuring each meal is customized to their liking.
What’s Out: Quantity over Quality | What’s In: Quality over Quantity
If two roads diverge in a yellow wood, take the road less traveled. With the snowballing “overtourism” dilemma, travelers are following their curiosity to new, exciting destinations off the beaten path. Rather than joining the crowds in Dublin or Cork, venture to the small town of Donegal where Lough Eske Castle promotes the alternative “Northern Route” of Irish travel, highlighting the nearby Slieve League Cliffs that are twice the size of the Cliffs of Moher with far fewer tourists photobombing pictures. Visit Belfast and check out the iconic Titanic Museum before retreating to the rugged coastlines and dramatic landscapes of Donegal. Instead of drowning in a sea of spring breakers at Panama City Beach, make the trip down to Okaloosa County where the clear gulf waters and sandy beaches of Destin, Florida are a sight for sore eyes. Dolphin Cruises, Gulf-to-Table restaurants, and open-air shopping make for the perfect family vacation or romantic getaway. When traveling to New York, staying in Manhattan is the obvious route, but why not check out the other boroughs that are alive with bustling nightlife, thriving culture, and significantly less street traffic. The Box House Hotel is nestled in the sleepy Greenpoint neighborhood in Brooklyn, convenient walking distance to the Manhattan-bound 7 train. Enjoy the excitement of Manhattan with a good night’s rest.