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Wellness Tourism Association Announces New Dates and Updated Program for International Wellness Tourism Conference

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The Wellness Tourism Association recently announced the second annual International Wellness Tourism Conference, postponed as a result of Hurricane Fiona, will take place Nov. 29 and 30 at host hotels Eden Roc Cap Cana and Melia Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic. A farewell dinner will be sponsored by The Dominican Republic Ministry of Tourism. 

“The two-day event is built around the theme of supporting the continuing growth of wellness tourism, and presenting topics of interest to DMOs, suppliers, travel advisors, and other industry stakeholders, as well as those looking to launch or enhance a wellness travel business,” says Anne Dimon, WTA CEO and president. “The intimate conference is a great opportunity for participants to learn, to share their personal knowledge, and to network with others in the industry.”    

The list of confirmed speakers and program topics are: 

What Consumers are Telling Us About Their Wants, Needs, and Demands as Travel Resumes

Anne Dimon will present the results of the 2022 Wellness Travel Consumer Survey plus Shayne Zand, head of partnerships at WeTravel, will present what WeTravel consumer booking patterns are indicating for the future.

Paradigm Shift in Medicine: The Wellness Resort/Retreat Takes On a More Important Role in “Preventive Medicine,” Plus “Aging as a Disease”

Ron Kapp, M.D., Ph.D., a Santa Barbara-based physician, author, and anti-aging research clinician, sees functional medicine as a modality to prevent the chronic diseases of aging and prolong life. He will present an introduction that provides the layperson with a foundation for unraveling this new, exciting, and complex arena of medicine. He will also address how wellness tourism stakeholders can become part of the healthcare system. 

Cannabis is Gaining Traction Under the Umbrella of Health & Wellness

Adam Abodeely, M.D, co-founder and CEO of Coral Cove Wellness Resort, educates on plant-based and integrative therapies to enhance wellness, not simply treat illness. He believes that a truly holistic wellness experience is one where ancient wisdom and plant-based therapies live in perfect harmony with modern science and medicine.

How Destination Marketing Organizations are Enhancing Their Wellness Offerings

As the future of travel unfolds with wellness top-of-mind for consumers, more geographic destinations around the world are reviewing what they offer under the banner of wellness, looking to launch wellness initiatives and position themselves as Wellness Destinations. Tameka Warton, director of tourism for the Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority (Canada Region), will unveil what her destination marketing organization (DMO) is doing, and Olia Kinoti, director of African Oasis Safaris Ltd, will speak about East Africa.

Travel Advisors and Suppliers – Working Better Together

Led by Barbara Nichuals, CEO and president of Bayside Travel Group of Companies, this roundtable discussion will find travel advisors sharing their clients’ needs and wants with suppliers, along with their concerns and requirements for successful partnerships. Suppliers, in return, will be able to respond with their own requirements, plus help advisers understand more about their wellness programs and other offerings.

Building a Marketing Strategy to Reach Wellness-Minded Consumers

Bibi Mukherjee, founder and principal of Curve Trends Marketing and co-founder of Sojourn Bicycling Vacations, will discuss developing a scalable, data-driven marketing strategy that, regardless of budget, can help generate a comprehensive marketing plan.

Spiritual Modalities for Mental Health  

Hilary Thurston, a therapeutic counselor with the city of Toronto and a registered member of the Ontario College of Social Workers, will present on the topic of psycho-spiritual frameworks and strategies to help guests and clients shift their mindset, find personal clarity, and move through life transitions with confidence.

WTA members and non-members are welcome to attend. For more information and to register: visit here.

About The Author

Heather, co-founder of Well Defined and the former editor-in-chief of American Spa, is an award-winning journalist and content strategist, skilled in writing, copyediting, and media relations. She is also a freelance writer and has contributed to Elite Traveler, Islands, Kiwi, Luxury Travel Advisor, Organic Spa, Porthole Cruise, Travel Agent,,,, and, in addition to various custom publications. She is frequently called upon to comment on various spa and wellness trends for various media outlets.