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These days, most people know at least a little something about health and wellness. Words such as Reiki (Japanese healing technique), Rolfing (soft tissue manipulation) and yoga have become part of the everyday lexicon as clients explore alternative types of therapies for maintaining and enhancing their overall health and well-being. Recognizing this trend, Four Seasons Resort Maui at Wailea is launching an innovative new series this fall during which clients can learn more about the potential healing powers of non-traditional wellness practices. Beginning in September and running through December, the four-day presentations feature renowned practitioners who lead laid-back and informative discussions in an outdoor setting. Clients can also book one-on-one sessions with the practitioners, who represent such fields as Qigong (Chinese physical and mental training), Reiki, Pilates, energy healing, meditation, fitness and sound and vibrational healing. Each program promises to enlighten clients with a range of lifestyle choices.
Four Seasons Resort Maui at Wailea senior spa director Pat Makozak said the idea for the wellness weekends has been brewing for some time.“Given the state of healthcare in America, most people are eager to explore alternative therapies,” said Makozak. “Alternative therapies aren’t just for people who suffer from a variety of illnesses. They can often heal or, at the very least, provide a better quality of living and care, in conjunction with Western medicine. “Most of us don’t have the time to research this type of information in order to make an educated choice to prescribe to,” she added. “That’s where Four Seasons Resort Maui and the wellness series come into play.”As a location for wellness programs, Four Seasons Resort Maui makes perfect sense. Serene and calm, some would say the island itself exudes a naturally healing aura that encourages visitors to relax the moment they get off the plane. At the same time, the series is tapping into the bounties of the Four Seasons’ spa, which the Zagat Survey rated the top destination spa in America. Measuring 21,000 square feet, it features 13 indoor treatment rooms and suites; three outdoor oceanfront massage hale (huts); a 1,000-square-foot fitness center; and a long list of treatments reflecting a sense of place. In recent years, the spa has distinguished itself with such innovations as exclusive Kate Somerville facials and classes designed by Pilates legend Mari Winsor — one of the best-known names in Pilates and the co-author of three books. With the wellness series, the Four Seasons’ spa is once again blazing trails.“We chose alternative practices that we thought would most interest and benefit our guests, and we picked practitioners based on their background, experience and ability to engage,” said Makozak. The series of fall wellness weekends begins on Sept. 2-5 with Dr. Jacob Liberman, an internationally recognized authority on holistic vision care and author of “Take Off Your Glasses and See.” The weekend of Sept. 9-12 brings a sampler of wellness techniques with Dr. Malik Cotter, an alternative healthcare practitioner who co-owns Dragon’s Den Herb Shoppe on Maui.Sound and vibrational healing is the topic for the Sept. 16-19 event featuring Dr. Arthur Harvey, a music therapy researcher, performer and educator. From Sept. 23-26, relationship specialist Eve Eschner Hogan leads the discussion. Acupuncture takes center stage at the hands of Thomas Frank from Sept. 30-Oct. 3.During the Oct. 14-17 session, clients can learn about anti-aging and bio-identical hormones with Dr. David Kern, a naturopathic physician. In November, with dates yet to be determined, advanced certified Rolfer Christopher Amodeo discusses the ins and outs of structural integration. From Nov. 25-28, Mari Winsor shows how the once-obscure Pilates workout can strengthen muscles, increase flexibility and improve overall health.The series continues from Dec. 2-5 with Phyllis Lei Furumoto, a grand master of Reiki. Clients can learn how to meditate during the Dec. 9-12 event; then, from Dec. 16-19, they can explore alternative approaches to fitness with Paul Chek, a prominent expert in the field of holistic health and corrective and high-performance exercise.As she looks forward to the wellness series, Makozak hopes that guests who attend the sessions will use what they have learned when they return home.“We want to offer our guests new experiences that have lasting value and benefits beyond their time spent with us,” she said. “Both health-conscious guests and curious novices are welcome.”