Standing at the crossroads of health and travel, wellness retreats and centres have gained feet in the Indian market in the past decade. In the current crisis where health is in focus like never before, wellness retreats provide a holistic and much needed escape.
Manu Rishi Guptha, CEO of Niraamaya Wellness Retreats, says the idea of a holiday has changed, and wellness is an integral part of leisure, especially at a time when immunity is important than ever.
"Earlier the definition of holiday used to be, go and indulge. Now people are wanting to slow down, even on holiday, because of the fast paced lifestyle cities offer. People want to invest money in themselves, in their health. There is a lot of inquiry about our immunity program and about how holistic wellness can help people to define an inner balance in their mind and soul. Also to cleanse the body from toxins and heaviness which overall increases and boosts immunity is important," Guptha said.
The decade-old wellness brand, which closed late March when the nationwide lockdown was imposed, has reopened all its properties in Kovalam, Kumarakom, Thekkady, Kohima and Goa last month.
Asked about the initial response they are seeing, the CEO says guests are trickling in, but border and quarantine regulations will still largely shape decisions about travelling. For residents at the retreat, he adds that due to low guest density and spacious architecture and landscape of their luxury centres, social distancing is easy.
Connecting wellness with overall health, the expert said that the focus now should be at reversing lifestyle issues caused by common morbidities. "Ninety percent of the problems in human body originate from these basics - Hypertension, Diabetes, Obesity and Cardio-Metabolism issues. If you correct these problems you can easily prevent so many serious diseases that can affect the human body." Niraamaya runs several programs focussed on correction of body order and build health and well-being - in Guptha's words, programs that heal and relax the mind, body and soul.
On tourism resuming, Guptha believes, "Once everything stabilizes a bit, I think the domestic travel will take off and people will spend considerable amount of time, effort and money on themselves. We are just praying and hoping the virus keeps down and the people build a little bit of confidence about travelling. Once travel will happen, the industry hopefully will bounce back."
In addition to its healthy living portfolio, Niraamaya has collaborated with Daivam Wellness to launch new Integrative and Functional Medicine Programs - The Diabetes Program, The Immunity Booster Program, The Mindfulness Program, The Stress Management Program, The Metabolic Obesity Program, The Gut Restoration Program, The Aesthetics Program and The Deep Detox Program.