Wellness Travel by definition is the art of traveling to promote health and well-being. But thanks to Linden Schaffer, founder of Pravassa, a wellness travel company that offers gorgeous mindful excursions to feed your mind, body and soul, the term just got a major luxury upgrade.
Pravassa offers destination travel on many tiers and their international locales include Bali, Thailand, Costa Rica and Spain. The Pravassa wellness travel experience allows adventurous souls to experience in a unique travel adventure: immersing themselves in culture, enjoying the local food, taking in landmarks and natural wonders alike, and enjoying the best of holistic living with charming accomodations.
Yeah, we're pretty envious of the folks who partake in these amazing wellness travel excursions and wanted to learn more about how the idea for Pravassa was born.
So we spoke to Pravassa CEO Linden Schaffer about the 5 tenets that Pravassa wellness philosophy is founded on: physical activity, stress reduction, nutrition and food education, spirital connectedness, and local involvment. These 5 tenets come together to create a unique travel experience that would tough to recreate quite the same way on your own.
This is part two of our interview (see part one here) and we go even deeper with Schaffer into her inspiring story of finding and then following her passion. The company’s presently showcasing their upcoming Fall 2016 Japan Tour Experience and we're seriously thinking about jumping on board.
How did you personally become involved in wellness travel? What drew you to it?
"When I was sixteen years old I participated in a volleyball tournament in Australia and that’s really when my love of travel started. Ever since then, I always wanted to find a way to travel. I worked for a time in the fashion field in New York City and every job that I had in fashion I always asked two questions: Does this position involve travel? And how much vacation time do I get?
For me, it was always centered on taking it out of the office. And so, as my career began to grow in the fashion industry, I always tried to build in ways to relax and refresh myself on my business trips so I could be more productive."
That’s very ingenious. How did you use your business trips to replenish and restore yourself?
"I worked at companies that allowed me to control my own budget, as long as I got my work done. So I would spend a lot of time reading travel guides (this was before internet resources) and I would spend a lot of time reading magazines so I could plan work trips that would make me healthier. That meant, choosing a hotel that was near a park so I could go for a walk in the morning. Or, I would find the hotel that would give me access to a yoga studio so I could take yoga classes before I went to bed at night. And I would ask if the hotel had a sauna or steam room because that’s the first thing I would do after a long flight, to help avoid jetlag and to detox. My co workers who would be on the same travel routes as me, slowly but surely all noticed that I would show up to the same meetings feeling better, looking better and having slept better than they did. And they wanted to know what my secrets were. That was sort of the beginning of people asking, “What are you doing and how can I work that into my routine?”
And this travel and wellness philosophy even extended to your personal life. Didn’t your husband and his home country play a role in what would eventually become Pravassa?
"My husband is from Argentina, we had a destination wedding there and the experience of that wedding and those plans turned out to be the footprint of what I used to create Pravassa. We flew everybody down from the states that weren’t already in Argentina. And every morning we had massage workshops and we showed them the country daily. So instead of a wedding it became this experience. And it became a healthy experience; because I was including all the fun things I like to do when I traveled. To this day people still tell us it’s the best wedding they’ve ever been to. And they don’t talk about the wedding at all, they talk about how they got a chance to discover and experience Argentina and enjoy the culture."
But suppose there are people who can’t make it to Argentina, Bali or Japan. How can they get the Pravassa experience by visiting your website?
Did Linden Schaffer’s story awaken you to travel or connect your inner calling to your livelihood? Keep reading for more inspiration:
WATCH: Z Living's The Posh Pescatarian,
"The big thing is to understand
that it’s always good for our brains to take time off. When we get stressed or when we work too much, we sort of fall into this place of working but not really being at work. Or we get to a place where we can’t make any more decisions in the day. I personally use our Instagram page to help escape from all of that. So say you can’t get to Bali, maybe you can look at Pravassa’s Instagram feed that features the beaches of Bali or the rain fields of Bali. That could be your perfect way to escape, just for a moment. And sometimes, that’s all you need to shift your energy to shift to a happy place. And that’s something you don’t have to go anywhere to do."
host and seafood enthusiast Stephanie Harris-Uyidi travels to exotic locations to take on new adventures and creates fabulous pescatarian meals using local seafood and ingredients. See a sneak preview here
Tell us in the comments: How does traveling inspire you? Where will your next big adventure be?