The BodyHoliday is an award-winning resort in St. Lucia renowned for its unique approach to health, fitness and wellbeing.
Whether you’re a dance fanatic or a devoted Yogi, the all-inclusive luxury resort offers something for everyone. And now the brand is expanding. We spoke exclusively to Andrew Barnard of Sunswept Resorts about the future of The Body Holiday.
LM: Congratulations! We hear that The Body Holiday is expanding. Can you talk us through why you have chosen now to branch out?
AB: The time is right. We are ready now, and have everything in place. I believe that The Body Holiday (TBH) is a brand, and has a purpose. The idea of changing people’s lives through wellness drives me. TBH has been doing that for many years, and I have always wanted to make that experience available on a wider scale and in different countries. Growth of wellness is still in its infancy, but people are far more willing to embrace this way of life than they were say in the 90s. There is a huge demand, and I feel that we are well positioned to fulfil this niche.
LM: What makes TBH experience different to other brands?
AB: TBH is about balancing lifestyle. It’s about encouraging people to live a more conscious lifestyle. The more people who understand why they need to look after their health, the more likely that they are to take it on board. This is why those coming along to TBH get a programme before they arrive – while they are here, they speak to experts and live that lifestyle, and then there is the aftercare. It’s not about just being healthy for the time you’re on holiday, and it’s certainly not a place where we try to fix people. We are merely trying to enhance people’s lives through health and wellbeing. It’s a whole different approach to wellbeing. It’s about mindfulness and conscious living.
LM: How has the concept of wellbeing changed over the years?
AB: When we first started TBH, people in the western world were very new to the whole wellbeing approach from yoga to meditation. It was seen as something that the Eastern world did. When I first started to go to yoga, I was the only man in the class, and my friends would almost mock me. But in the last few years, such disciplines are accepted as a crucial part of life, and people have started to see the numerous benefits on offer.
LM: Where will the first expansion of TBH be?
AB: As we take the brand forward, we want to start off close to home and are looking at branching out to the east of the island. This way we minimise any risk or potential challenges that come our way. When you’re close by, you can keep an eye on the developments, and be quick to deal with any issues that may arise. We have already seen a location, and are working towards getting that project off the ground. We will be looking to open in about 18 months to two years’ time.
LM: When the next TBH is completed, will it be the replica of the original?
AB: The principles will of course be the same, but when in a new location, we will be absorbing the culture and environment of that particular area. We want each of TBH resorts experiences to have an individual boutique resort feel to it. Each will have its own flavour, additional influences of the area, and even serve food originating from the particular regions.
LM: When looking for staff, what type of person will you be after to run the place?
AB: Choosing the right staff is paramount to getting the wellness message across. We want people who understand the brand, and believe in it themselves, so they can pass on their knowledge to those coming along to experience this lifestyle. We want staff who are passionate to the core about what we do and why we do it. This way they can offer guidance and advice to everyone that walks through the doors. I am a great believer of offering on-going training to brush up on skills and learn new ones. This is why we offer onsite training and everyone here continues to learn. We really want the best people to work here.
LM: What other locations do you have in mind in the future?
AB: I have a vision of expanding the brand in a number of top destinations including Central America, Morocco, Southern Spain, Costa Rica, Thailand, the Maldives, Mauritius and Sri Lanka. These are some of the places that already have a global wellness presence, and TBH certainly is the right fit to reach out into these markets. The next 15 years or so are going to be incredibly interesting as we start to expand. It really is a truly great time to take the message of the health and wellness to another level.
LM: Thank you for your time Andrew. Any advice on how we can start our path to health and wellbeing at Luxurious Magazine?
AB: Start to practice mindfulness, and live a conscious life from today.
For more information, or to make a reservation, visit www.thebodyholiday.com.
By Sabi Phagura