How many times have you been driving and you suddenly notice that the Maintenance Required light comes on and you hope against hope that it only means you need a routine oil change and that something bigger won’t be wrong with the car?
That’s how it often feels when you’re deciding to take time for proactive wellness — especially if it’s diagnostic! The sad reality is most people make more time and spend more money on car maintenance than they do maintenance for their own bodies.
In the past, spa and wellness treatments were considered a total luxury and a pampering indulgence. Beyond how good you feel when you leave (my friends and I like to call it “spa brain”), research studies increasingly underscore that wellness treatments such as cryotherapy, red light therapy, and hyperbaric chambers can actually help keep the wolves at bay as we age. Thus, the recent popularity of social wellness clubs that you can drive by and see people in the window getting IV therapies and sitting in compression pants. But what about an actual wellness vacation?
Recently, I had to go to Miami for a conference, so I decided to arrive a few days early to try out the Carillon Miami Wellness Resort North Miami Beach to help “tune up” my engine before my schedule got really hectic at the conference. It originally opened as the Canyon Ranch Miami but for the past five years it has been independently owned and operated by Alchemy Resorts. Since then, it has risen in prominence as one of the most innovative wellness resorts in the US.
Carillon’s website lists these Health & Wellness Programs as offered at the resort: Integrative & Functional Medicine, Traditional Chinese Medicine, Energy Healing, Emotional Health, Couples Therapy, Life Strategist, Touchless Wellness, Cryotherapy, Salt Float Bath, IV Therapy, and more.
That enviable and kind of unbelievable roster of services is available in the resort’s 70,000 square foot wellness center — touted as the largest on the Eastern seaboard — featuring an extensive hydrotherapy circuit, medical offices, a salon, as well as an expansive gym complete with the resort’s signature, two-story rock-climbing wall, and 75+ weekly fitness classes. Those classes were always tapping me on the shoulder. Each time the elevator opened on the main floor, I would see the digital list of classes for that day and be tempted to cancel all my other plans and just try every class, one after the other. My favorite was beachfront yoga in their indoor/outdoor studio. While we were there, I tried a class with a sound bowl practitioner; I think every yoga class should feature sound bowl accompaniment!
I met the resort’s VP of Wellness, Tammy Pahel, while I was there. She’s gained lots of attention for her very smart idea to implement a fascinating range of “Touchless Therapies,” as she calls them, during the COVID-19 pandemic. Now they’re incorporated into their regular menu of wide-ranging body & face treatments at the resort’s spa that is embedded within the Wellness Center.
My treatment “schedule” during my stay was like a visit to a Wellness Adventureland. I started with an Indiba Facial, which is a new technology that treats skin laxity and reduces fine lines and wrinkles. Then came my 25-to-30-minute Touchless Therapy Treatments that have some lofty goals such as:
- Biocharger – Boosts energy, performance, recovery, focus, sleep, flexibility.
- Welnamis – Quantum Harmonic Sound Therapy combines music, gentle sound waves and vibrations matched to the body’s energy chakras to de-stress, improve concentration & creativity, and balance mood.
- Halo Light Therapy – Red light and Himalayan salt therapy, powerful for respiratory & skin health.
- Prism Light Pod – Strengthens the immune system, inflammation and pain relief, shrinks fat cells and accelerates collagen production & healing.
- Somadome – A domed chair with light & color therapy and binaural beats.
- MindSpa – A “booth/portable room” in the hotel lobby that promises to improve sleep, reduce stress, and boost self-confidence.
- VEMI – Vibroacoustic, Electromagnetic and Infrared Therapy – “defrags” your body from all the 5G pollutants that attack us each day and helps speed cellular rejuvenation.
The hotel has been “first to market” in the US for lots of groundbreaking wellness experiences, designing “retreats” around themes like Age Defying; Recovery, Pain Management, and one of the newest — and with the American Sleep Association reporting 50 to 70 million Americans report sleep challenges, the clearly much-needed — Immersive Sleep Retreat.
Did I mention all the rooms at the resort are apartment-sized? I shared mine with a girlfriend. It was a double/double so we each had a bed, there was a huge bathroom, and a living room area adjacent to the kitchen. Another thing we each also had was an AI-powered Bryte Balance ™ Smart Bed which enables you to choose the kind of sleep you prefer, adjust to body temperature and firmness, personalize comfort on either side of the bed, and delivers a sleep report to you each morning. Carillon’s sleep packages offer guests the opportunity to craft a personalized experience with the “greatest sleep-enhancing hits” from the spa menu and a few nifty amenities like a sleep journal and a sleep “how to” book from a Harvard specialist.
Were each of my wellness experiences at The Carillon life-changing? No; but taken as a whole, I found that I had more energy, more glow and, most importantly, more brain capacity for days ahead — which included an international summit where I met people from around the world and recorded 8 different podcast episodes. Was my battery charged and my tank refueled in the smartest way possible? You betcha!