NOV 2018

ConventionSouth magazine is the leading resource for meeting planners who book all types of events, conventions, conferences and group travel in the south.

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⎜ ConventionSouth ⎜ N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 8 w w w . c o n v e n t i o n s o u t h . c o m 42 GOLF, RECREATION & RELATIONSHIPS Wellness-Inspired Meetings By Adrianne Bowen According to the "2018 Global Meetings and Events Forecast" from Ameri- can Express Meetings & Events, wellness is an emerging trend. Yma Sherry, vice president, North America meetings and events for American Express Global Business Travel, said, "Wellness is huge and it is growing as a factor in meeting planning, partly driven by a broader consumer movement or mindset. You'll see this more in hotels around food and beverage offerings. They may provide more organic, free-range, healthy options." Venues across the South are offering enticing elements that provide well-being and focus on the attendee experience. Hilton Head Health understands the importance of intermingling well-being with productivity for corporate events. "The demands of today's workplace provide very little time for employees to focus on taking care of themselves," said Lisette Cifaldi, LMSW, director of strategic partnerships and specialty programs. "With hectic schedules and mostly sedentary workdays, employees face increased rates of 'burnout' characterized by lower morale and decreased productivity. Corporate retreats and meetings that offer wellness components provide an experience that can be person- ally transformative. The best programs are fully immersive and structured to address self-awareness, proper nutrition, fitness and mindfulness." Hilton Head Health includes four gyms, a heated pool, a contemporary culinary teaching kitchen and a full-service spa. Services include group fitness and yoga classes, nutrition counseling, hands-on cooking classes, motivational speaking and team-building At Palm Beach Marriott Singer Island Beach Resort & Spa, employee health is a vital component of corporate meetings. "Over the past few years, there has been a strong emphasis on the relationship between the physical and social environments of the workplace and the health behav- iors of employees," said Diane D'Amico, director of sales and marketing. "Associate career longevity is something many companies celebrate and much of that – I believe – attributes to a healthy work environment. Taking time to celebrate and relax provides associates with tools to be successful." The resort's meetings adventure menu allows groups to leverage the beachfront location and build relationships and a sense of unity among team members. Outdoor capabilities for groups include a snorkel excur- sion to a natural reef and beach sports tournaments. John W. Sneed II, CHSP, vice president of sales and services for Wilmington (N.C.) and Beaches CVB, said "Meeting planners today are constantly looking for ways to enrich the attendee experience and one of the ways we are seeing that come into play is by incorporating wellness into their pro- grams. Attendees like going to events where they feel good and refreshed, and part of this means building in activities and healthier food choices." The Embassy Suites by Hilton Wilmington Riverfront offers healthy packages such as "Yogurt & Yoga," which includes group yoga in the ball- room followed by a yogurt parfait bar, according to Director of Sales and Marketing Melissa Fallis. Additionally, the hotel's location on the Riverwalk, adjacent to the Wilmington Convention Center, allows meeting attendees an attractive area to walk or jog. Isolé Villas, a recently-opened private estate for corporate retreats in Orlando, Fla., hosts events that inspire a holistic approach to wellness. "Executives are seeking extraordinary destinations and unique experiences for their corporate retreats and events," said David Krakauer, founder. "Isolé Villas offers personalized accommodations, services and meeting ameni- ties to inspire teams, forge solid relationships and increase productivity." Along with 15 suites, the venue offers a salt-water pool and an indoor fitness court. LaPlaya Beach & Golf Resort, a Noble House Resort located on the beach in Naples, Fla., combines wellness programming with friendly golf competitions. Just a few miles away from the resort, LaPlaya Beach & Golf Club is a great place for a meeting break and allows groups to spend time outdoors building relationships with fellow event attendees. Through its #LaPlayaLiving, the resort offers wellness-inspired packages and yoga on the beach events. n Palm Beach Marriott Singer Island Beach Resort & Spa Riding the surf at Wrightsville Beach, N.C. Riverwalk in Wilmington, N.C.

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