With the wellness movement booming and the term ‘self-care’ on the lips of, well, everyone, there has been no better time to get into the natural beauty and wellness industry. It was our pleasure to speak with one of the most inspiring women we know; the exquisite, French-born Christelle Besnier, who, as the Senior Spa Director at the Four Seasons UAE, has championed the Spa Industry in a geographic area where luxury is paramount.

 

  • How did you start out in the Spa Industry?

It all started in Monaco 15 years ago when I was Personal Assistant to a Hotel General Manager. I am a curious person and have always been interested in developing my understanding of hospitality. I felt that wellness and spa, in particular, would take more and more sense/space in our busy lives. And here we are, wellness is now a lifestyle and I am glad that my days are now focused on helping our guests to achieve their wellness and beauty goals.

 

  • Which main changes or developments have you seen within this industry since starting out?

Actually, the change is tremendous. When I started, Hotels only had fitness facilities. Now ALL luxury hotels have a Spa and wellness component, which is fundamental to the positioning of the Hotel. Often now, guests ask about the Spa as often as they do the restaurant.

Treatment-wise, Spas expand their expertise towards a more comprehensive approach including result driven therapies. Guests are no longer seeking a simple massage, but looking to Spas for holistic wellness solutions.

Our everyday lives have become busy and 2-hours at a Spa is a real investment. A treatment, therefore, has to be worth it from a physical wellbeing standpoint and has to generate instantaneous and noticeable results.

 

  • Which top trends do you forecast for the industry in 2019? 

Result-driven therapies and holistic therapies such as yoga, chakra techniques will become stronger as we need to disconnect/detox and rebalance.

 

  • What is your favourite Sodashi treatment? 

My favourite is the Samadara Ultimate Age-Defying Facial as it provides instantaneous and lasting results. It also really feeds my skin using amazing pure ingredients, while the Rose Quartz crystals deeply restore energy and glow.

Being based in the Middle East, I adore the Arabian Oud Body Oil and the Arabian Oud treatment. The ingredients are really calming and stress relieving.

 

  • What does ‘wellness’ mean to you? 

Wellness is a lifestyle but also a state of mind to me. It is a blend of positive thinking, physical activity, good sleep, good food, social & family happiness and professional balance.

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