My name is: Patrick Huey.
I'm known for being: Group Director of Spa – Asia, MSpa International.
We’re hosting retreats called: Wellbeing Retreats—the newest offering from Anantara’s global wellbeing initiative, Balance Wellness.
They're located: across 17 Anantara Resorts throughout Bali, the Maldives, Oman, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Qatar until January 31, 2018.
We were drawn to these destinations because: We have hotels and resorts that reach across classic holiday spots, such as Thailand, or more emerging destinations like Sri Lanka. Each offers a unique location for you to find balance for both physical and mental health. There are going to be certain places you find yourself drawn to, whether they be jungle, mountain or sea. That’s part of what makes these packages so diverse.
These retreats are special because: We’ve built a sample of what a more regimented wellness retreat will look like, so these are ideal for healthy weekenders, those looking to dabble in a more committed retreat or holiday goers who want to focus inward for just a few days of their getaway.
Packages vary slightly between each resort to showcase the resort’s own indigenous experiences and dynamic wellness offerings. Commonly, the packages include nourishing cuisine, such as from the in-house Wellness Chef at Anantara Kihavah in the Maldives; rejuvenation from Anantara Spa like a stimulating Abhyanga massage at Al Baleed Resort in Oman; mindful movement like a private Tai Chi experience at Anantara Chiang Mai, Thailand; and luxury accommodations to guarantee a solid night’s sleep. Ayurveda makes up a big part of our wellness outlook, and you’ll find it also forms the pillar to many of our retreat packages—particularly in Sri Lanka.
One thing you can’t miss is: You can’t really expect me to choose just one thing, can you? I’m partial to the Ayurvedic expertise at Anantara Kalutara and Anantara Tangalle in Sri Lanka, but then there’s also the historic and fabled Muay Thai in Thailand—called the “Art of Eight Limbs.” Even the view from atop Jabal al Akhdar in Oman is a rejuvenating sight. Sorry, there’s just too many to choose from!
Your body will thank you because: We’re giving you the tools to choose healthy options while on holiday that you can carry back home and integrate into your daily routine. How we execute that is through local immersion and expertise, varying from one exotic location to another. The programs are flexible, so you’ve got plenty of time to spend admiring the views, swimming in the ocean or visiting temples. All that is just as key as the healthy work you do with the practitioners. It’s mindful experiences like this that impress a new lifestyle.
I never retreat without bringing: my journal. I find retreats are great times to allow yourself the space and time to reflect and observe and move to a place of stillness. In this mental and emotional space, I like to write down my thoughts and observations. It’s almost like an extension of the actual retreat, and it helps to declutter my mind.
Retreating is part of my process because: You have to make time to nurture yourself. With the hectic pace of life and the demands of the business world, if you don’t find a tool to disconnect from all of that, you will be burned out and ineffective. To me, going on a retreat is an essential tool for self-preservation.