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In partnership with Red Sea Global
  1. Red Sea Global
3 weeks ago

The New Global Wellness Hub on the Banks of the Red Sea

Wellness travelers will soon look to Saudi Arabia for the latest innovations in health, fitness and longevity.

By Toby Louch

When people think of wellness, many immediately picture spas in the Maldives, Swiss health retreats or ashrams in India. On Saudi Arabia’s west coast, a new premier wellness destination is rising, fronted by AMAALA and The Red Sea.

Today, the term wellness has various meanings and purposes for different people; it could be a holistic retreat, an exercise and fitness-based getaway, a medical-style experience at a clinic or just the desire to live a simple happy life. The key to creating a premium wellness destination is a wide offering that suits even the most decerning traveler’s wants and needs.

Developed by Red Sea Global (RSG)— the multi-project developer behind some of the world’s most ambitious tourism destinations — the Kingdom’s two new destinations treat wellness as a key consideration.

RSG’s destinations have attracted some of the biggest names in luxury hospitality and wellness like Miraval, Six Senses and Clinique La Prairie, many of whom are now putting the final touches on their resorts at AMAALA. The Red Sea is now welcoming guests following the opening of St. Regis Red Sea Resort and Six Senses Southern Dunes in recent months.

At the heart of this wellness operation is Lindsay Madden Nadeau, senior director of wellness strategy at RSG. She told Elite Traveler: “The exciting thing about the different giga projects happening in Saudi Arabia, is that each one has its own unique selling proposition. AMAALA has been pegged as the wellness destination within the kingdom.

“It has these beautiful meditative waters and rolling backdrop hills. It’s the perfect place for people to really immerse themselves in the elements of nature and reconnect with themselves.”

[See also: Six Senses Southern Dunes, The Red Sea: An Oasis of Serenity]

Red Sea wellness
The St. Regis Red Sea Resort is now open / ©Red Sea Global

In addition to the tranquil location, AMAALA’s key features will bring a mixture of cutting-edge technology — the latest breakthroughs from the wellness sector — in addition to tried and tested favorites.

“Our ambition is to reimagine health and wellness through the lens of the luxury transformative traveler, it’s really about going further than that conventional spa and wellness offer and weaving in the rich Saudi culture, impressive landscapes and focusing on progressive wellness technologies,” she added.

It’s clear that the world of wellness has landed on the shores of Saudi Arabia’s west coast, but what steps is Red Sea Global taking to ensure it offers something different from the competition?

A clean slate

You can imagine the phrase “A new beginning” being used in a wellness environment, but for AMAALA, it’s quite apt. Unlike other famous wellness destinations, RSG began with a blank canvas.

“We started with a clean slate, did our research and used business intelligence to help drive consumer trends when it comes to how wellness is evolving each year,” said Madden-Nadeau.

“That allowed RSG to choose the finest location that would suit AMAALA’s wellness aspirations and then move forward and curate exactly what partners they want to work with.”

As master planner, developer and builder, RSG found itself in the unique position of observing its partner operators’ offerings and ensuring each aspect of the destination complemented the vision as a whole.

Madden-Nadeau said: “We really see ourselves as guardians of this destination. We have been able to choose brands for their expertise and then worked with them to help achieve our vision, while maintaining our values of sustainability and achieving the high of luxury hospitality and travel.”

[See also: Thuwal Private Retreat: Your Very Own Red Sea Island]


Equinox at AMAALA
Equinox at AMAALA / ©Red Sea Global

The wellness industry changes with the times, operating on trends as breakthroughs are made and individuals search for the next big thing. “The first big shift I noticed was in 2008 when we saw the emergence of boutique fitness and social wellness clubs,” said Madden-Nadeau.

One brand that has gained an impressive following in this format and will soon be opening at AMAALA is Equinox, the luxury fitness club. Equinox found particular success from emerging as a luxury fitness club and has now developed into a lifestyle hospitality brand.

“Equinox’s focus, and it’s an area they are particularly strong on, is high-performance lifestyle,” said Madden-Nadeau. “It means high-performance fitness, beauty, aesthetics and sports… it’s all-encompassing. It’s for the customer who really wants to get out there and enjoy life.

“I stayed in its New York hotel in January and I was really impressed with their approach to recovery modalities and treatments, as well as their highly sophisticated approach to beauty aesthetic utilizing renowned doctors and cutting-edge technologies.

“Breakfasts are incredibly healthy, and the mini bars are flooded with wellness products that will enhance your performance, sleep and recovery.”

Part of Equinox’s success has been understanding its customers’ needs and wants. Something as small and simple as the availability of yoga mats and blocks at the location as it is unlikely travelers will bring their own. It is particularly the younger, under-40s audience that are attracted to Equinox’s offering.

[See also: Discovering the unmatched thrill of Red Sea watersports]


Six Senses Southern Dunes
Six Senses Southern Dunes, The Red Sea is now open / ©Red Sea Global

A trend that has emerged more recently, particularly after Covid-19 is longevity, where clinics approach wellness with a more medical angle, to expand lifecycle through cellular repair, reduce inflammation and boosting guests’ energy. This is set to be extremely well represented at AMAALA.

“Longevity is an evolving trend,” says Madden-Nadeau. “I don’t mean trend as in it’s going to come and go, I mean that each year it changes, shifts and grows as new breakthroughs are made.”

Clinique La Prairie, a clinic in Switzerland that has been operating on these principles since 1931, has just embarked upon a careful phase of international expansion. The first new Clinique La Prairie location recently opened in China, while the third will launch at AMAALA.

“RSG saw this increase in demand and responded by bringing in a collection of wellness operators that excel with longevity,” said Madden-Nadeau. “It’s an area where Clinique La Prairie are strong, they have health checks, stress management, master detox programs and reverse aging programs. It’s extremely comprehensive as a brand and it’s something individuals are increasingly looking to travel for.”

Another brand coming to AMAALA is Jayasom, a newcomer to the industry focusing on integrative wellness, is set to take a slightly different approach. Where once treatments were either natural and holistic or medical, Jayasom combines the two.

“It’s focused on wellness and wisdom and then integrates medical diagnostics. It respects Eastern technologies like acupuncture and Chinese medicine with the added benefit of Western advancements. It’s an invigorating blend of East meets West,” adds Madden-Nadeau.

[See also: How The Red Sea is Becoming the Next Adventure Travel Hot Spot]

Family wellness

Jayasom red sea
Jayasom is bringing family style wellness to AMAALA / ©Red Sea Global

Traditionally, wellness hospitality has prioritized the individualized guest experience, an approach that does not necessarily lend itself to children and families. However, in recent years, the industry has developed to offer a service that suits both adults at children.

“The concept of children’s enrichment through travel is really gaining momentum,” said Madden-Nadeau. “Families are increasingly recognizing the value of travel contributing to a child’s education, long gone are the days where parents just leave their children at a camp all day.”

Jayasom has put particular consideration into family offerings.

The resort is essentially split in two, one section for adults only and one section for families, however, instead of simply splitting these groups up, Jayasom has put considerable work into its offering for children.

“It’s all about fostering relationships, so there are plenty of opportunities for family counseling and enrichment activities,” said Madden-Nadeau.

“If you consider your standard resort gym, it’s usually a no-go area for children. At Jayasom, in the family area, they have designed a gym that’s safe for children to use as well as a family hydrotherapy area. It’s all about taking the extra steps to ensure families are able to experience the resort together.”

As visitors begin arriving at The Red Sea destination, guests will soon head to AMAALA to experience the world’s latest premier wellness destination. These locations are ready to succeed due to the quality of the partners and the variety on display. From the latest medical advancements in longevity to yoga-focused retreats and family escapes, the banks of Saudi Arabia’s Red Sea coast is a must-visit for wellness-focused travelers looking for an all-encompassing bespoke trip as sure to be as memorable as it is rejuvenating.

To learn more visit

Visit the Red Sea Global X Elite Traveler Hub Page Here

[See also: The Red Sea: An Adventure Like No Other]

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