Hotel Wailea introduces wellness retreat

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Hotel Wailea on Maui is hosting its Awake Wellness Retreat May 13-18, including meditation, special meals, yoga, massage and popular Maui excursions.
Hotel Wailea on Maui is hosting its Awake Wellness Retreat May 13-18, including meditation, special meals, yoga, massage and popular Maui excursions.

The Hotel Wailea, a luxury, adults-only resort on Maui, will offer a wellness retreat for the first time this spring.

The Awaken retreat runs May 13-18 and includes iconic Maui excursions, specially-crafted menus, and a suite of activities to help guests find balance of the mind and body curated by retreat partner Uplift Maui.

The property, operated by Relais & Chateaux, has been expanding its wellness offerings over the last few years to a good reception from guests, and believed there was appetite for more.

"The retreat has been in the works for about a year, and we felt it was the right time for a number of reasons," said Christy Stesky, Hotel Wailea's director of marketing. "We've been observing the guests and how they respond to the different things we put out there. One example is we've been offering a daytime restaurant menu featuring healthful dishes made with local ingredients, and saw a great response. The last few years have woken us up to what a huge area of interest this is for our guests."

Andrea "Dre" Fors, head of Uplift Maui, already worked with the property on yoga classes and other programming. Now, she is helping to design the wellness retreat for a more focused, immersive and multi-day experience.

There will be daily yoga sessions in a variety of styles and formats, guided meditation
sessions and aromatherapy treatments. Fors teaches a range of disciplines, including standard yoga classes with a matt as well as aerial yoga with silk strips of cloth that help support or suspend the practitioner.

"You'd think that aerial yoga might be more challenging, but it's actually like having a partner or coach there," Stesky said. "If you've never tried it, the silk straps allow you to relax more and go deeper into poses,"

Participants will also be treated to special juices and healthy meals featuring island-sourced ingredients each day designed with the help of Fors, who is also a nutritional counselor, Stesky said. The five-day retreat concludes with a closing party and dinner at The Restaurant at Hotel Wailea.

In addition to the yoga, fitness and nutritional guidance, the retreat features excursions focused on fostering a greater connection to nature and the outdoors. Participants will have the opportunity to join a sunrise trip to Haleakala, the volcano in east Maui that is the Valley Isle's highest peak and plays an important role in Polynesian mythology. Additionally, guests on the retreat will get out on the water for a snorkeling and turtle viewing expedition off the coast of Maui.

There is also plenty of time for relaxation and rest during the retreat, and the package includes a Lomi Lomi massage.

"It's the traditional Hawaiian form of massage and our practitioners get quite extensive training in both the cultural aspects and the therapeutic aspects of the the technique," Stesky said.

The Awake Wellness Retreat is the start of what Stesky and Hotel Wailea management see as an expanding wellness menu at the property including more programming offered on a regular, daily or weekly schedule. Based on interest, they hope to host wellness retreats either once or twice a year in the future, according to Stesky.

"Some retreats are more rustic or more about completely disconnecting," Stesky said. "This is a retreat where you don't have to give up all of the little luxuries of life to reconnect and replenish.  It strikes a balance between an immersive retreat and a vacation."

The Awaken Wellness Retreat package starts at $4,375 including a five-night stay at Hotel Wailea taxes and fees.

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