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Holistic Holidays in Asia - International - August 2012

“Human beings are made of body, mind and spirit. Of these, spirit is primary, for it connects us to the source of everything, the eternal field of consciousness.”

This report focuses on holistic tourism in a number of Asian countries. With its time-honoured healing traditions, Asia leads the world in this sector of the industry – defined in this report as ‘holidays and travel experiences that offer an integrated approach to health and fitness, taking into account the whole person’s lifestyle as well as mental, physical and spiritual health’. Holistic holidays are taken by tourists for the purpose of improving their health and well-being, and usually involve structured programmes of activities and therapies. Holistic tourism is a niche sector of the overall health tourism market, which encompasses wellness and medical tourism as well as the various sectors linked to both categories.

The concept of ‘holism’ was pioneered by South African statesman Jan Smuts, in his book, Holism and Evolution (1926). Holism (from the Greek ‘holos’ meaning whole, all, entire, complete) is defined as ‘the tendency in nature to form wholes that are greater than the sum of the parts through creative evolution’ and plays a pivotal role in all life.

Holistic health is the physical, emotional, intellectual and spiritual health of an individual, family, society, nation and world. It involves holistic perspective and knowledge based on analytical research and co-ordinated policies as well as plans and their implementation in fields such as education, agriculture, science, technology and others.

Asia’s wellness traditions are rooted in ancient medical traditions and spirituality that treat the body, mind and spirit as one and encourage the body to heal itself. One of the distinctive features of oriental medicines is that they are an integral part of man’s philosophy, his consciousness and his relationships with other beings and the environment. Perhaps the most ubiquitous wellness principle in traditional medicine is the idea that life is dependent on a subtle form of energy. This energy, which is described by different healing traditions as ‘life energy’, ‘vital force’, ‘prana’ ‘chi’ or ‘qi’, is said to flow along defined pathways to support the function of living systems, according to Michael Loh in Understanding the Global Spa Industry, 2008. Health requires a dynamic balance of body, mind and spirit and any imbalance or disruption in the energy flow is likely to cause illness. Holistic treatments and therapies are aimed at restoring balance and the natural flow.

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Table of contents

  1. Introduction

      • Figure 1: Health tourism categories, 2012
  2. Data Sources

    • Overview

      • Holistic tourism – comparing East and West
        • Figure 2: Global locations of different kinds of wellness tourism, 2011
    • Holistic Healing Systems and Therapies

        • Ayurveda
          • Figure 3: Types of Ayurvedic practitioners in the world, 2012
          • Figure 4: Dosha types and characteristics, 2012
        • Treatments available in Ayurvedic resorts and retreats
          • Abhyanga
            • Pada Abhyanga
              • Prista Abhyanga
                • Shiro Abhyanga
                  • Marma point massage
                    • Panchakarma
                      • Shirodhara – forehead oil flow treatment
                        • Udvarthana – Ayurvedic herbal body-scrub massage
                          • Yoga and meditation
                            • Traditional Chinese medicine
                              • TCM treatments available in resorts and retreats
                                • Acupressure massage
                                  • Acupuncture (Zhen Fa)
                                    • Cupping (Ba Guan)
                                      • Reflexology
                                        • Qigong
                                          • T’ai chi
                                            • Tui Na
                                              • Unani (Tibb) medicine 
                                                • Figure 5: The key principles of Tibb, 2012
                                              • Other holistic therapies practised in wellness resorts and spas
                                                • Indonesian traditional lulur
                                                  • Reiki
                                                    • Shiatsu
                                                      • Watsu
                                                        • Thai herbal bolus treatment
                                                          • Thai massage (Nuad boran)
                                                          • Holistic Tourism Sectors

                                                              • Ashrams
                                                                • Ayurveda resorts
                                                                  • Figure 6: Typical therapies at Ayurvedic resorts, 2012
                                                                • Spas
                                                                  • Day spas
                                                                    • Destinations spas and wellness retreats
                                                                      • Hotel spas and resorts
                                                                        • Yoga and meditation
                                                                            • Figure 7: Alternative activities associated with yoga tourism, 2009
                                                                        • A Profile of the Holistic Holidaymaker

                                                                          • A Cross-section of Holistic Tourism Destinations in Asia

                                                                              • China
                                                                                • Ruby Spa and Bath, Dalian
                                                                                  • Hong Kong
                                                                                    • India
                                                                                      • Ananda
                                                                                        • Osho International Meditation Resort, Pune
                                                                                          • Indonesia – Bali
                                                                                            • Como Shambhala
                                                                                              • Fivelements Puri Ahimsa
                                                                                                • Japan
                                                                                                    • Figure 8: Categories of water properties in Japanese onsen, 2009
                                                                                                  • Atami
                                                                                                    • Malaysia
                                                                                                      • The Chateau Spa & Organic Wellness Resort
                                                                                                        • Sri Lanka
                                                                                                          • Barberyn Ayurveda Resorts
                                                                                                            • Thailand
                                                                                                              • Chiva Som International Health Resort, Hua Hin
                                                                                                                • Kamalaya
                                                                                                                • Tour Operators Providing Holistic Holidays in Asia

                                                                                                                    • Healing Holidays
                                                                                                                      • Healing Hotels of the World
                                                                                                                        • The Healthy Holiday Company
                                                                                                                          • Neal’s Yard Agency
                                                                                                                            • Responsible Travel
                                                                                                                              • Skyros
                                                                                                                                • Soul of India Tours
                                                                                                                                  • Tabitha Dean Yoga Holidays
                                                                                                                                    • Thermalia Travel
                                                                                                                                      • Wellbeing Escapes
                                                                                                                                        • Wellbeing Holidays Ltd
                                                                                                                                          • Other useful resources
                                                                                                                                            • Lightbalance
                                                                                                                                              • The Retreat Company
                                                                                                                                              • Developing Asia’s Holistic and Wellness Tourism

                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 9: SWOT analysis of Asia’s wellness industry, 2010
                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 10: Spa and wellness industry in Asia-Pacific region, 2011
                                                                                                                                                  • Industry insight
                                                                                                                                                    • On defining holistic tourism
                                                                                                                                                      • On the future of Asian holistic and wellness tourism
                                                                                                                                                        • On wellness and spas
                                                                                                                                                        • What Next?

                                                                                                                                                          • The Asian advantage
                                                                                                                                                          • Key Future Challenges

                                                                                                                                                            Companies Covered

                                                                                                                                                            To learn more about the companies covered in this report please contact us.

                                                                                                                                                            Holistic Holidays in Asia - International - August 2012

                                                                                                                                                            £295.00 (Excl.Tax)