Report of 2023 edition
A moment to look back at our two days of MWC !
We appreciate all of your expertise during our event Medical Wellness Congress, and feel very positive about moving forward with you all to a second edition in 2023.
Our Media & Partners
Managing Director and CMO of the Lanserhof Group
For over 10 years, Nils Behrens has been the Managing Director and CMO of the Lanserhof Group. For more than three decades, Lanserhof has combined traditional naturopathy with cutting-edge medicine. …With Nils, the expansion of the Lanserhof from originally one location to currently five has begun. The newest resort opened in 2022 on the exclusive North Sea island Sylt.
International Wellness & Hospitality Specialist
Founder of the Aleksandrowicz System®
Beata Aleksandrowicz is an international expert on massage, healing and wellbeing. She is a founder of the Aleksandrowicz System and former creator of the Pure Massage Spa Training Method. …In 2021 she launched her eponymous range: Beata Love Life Beauty that features her Home Healing Rituals to support happiness, wellbeing and good health. She offers courses, workshops and talks for spa industry worldwide and for the consumer audience. She promotes advanced training in modern concept of massage and healing together with her expertise on different aspects of wellbeing.The ‘go-to’ massage expert in London, Beata has a global reputation for her natural approach to ageing and is revered by the likes of Vogue, Tatler and the Times for the exceptional quality of her work. Beata has worked with global award-winning spa and wellness locations. She served as a member on the Mental Wellness Initiative for The Global Wellness Institute and is a judge for the National Massage Championship and TPOT Shine Your Light Awards. She speaks about massage, spa, the power or touch and ageing at events around the world including in France, Ireland, Germany, Poland, and the UK.
DR. Boris Banovsky
Group Medical Director for the Ensana Health Spa Resorts Group
Boris Banovsky, M.D. is a senior healthcare professional, graduated from Medical School of Komensky University in Bratislava, Slovakia, with 7 years of active medical practice, specialized in General/Trauma Surgery … and with 17 years of extensive experience and knowledge in the medical devices’ businesses, both locally and internationally. He also has a 2- years experience in leadership positions in the state health sector. For the last 3 years he acts as a Medical Director at Health Spa Piešťany, Slovakia (member of the Ensana Health Spa Resorts Group) and also as a Group Medical Director for the Ensana Health Spa Resorts Group. He speaks fluently 4 languages. In his free time he actively plays sports and is a fan of Formula 1 besides of ‘80s – ’90 music and fine arts.
CEO Health Tourism Worldwide
DR. FRANZ LINSER
Founder and Managing Director of Linser Hospitality
With over thirty years of experience in the wellness and hotel industries, Franz is a sought-after expert developing innovative state-of-the-art health and wellness projects. He is founder and managing director of Linser Hospitality,… an international consulting firm based in Innsbruck, Austria. The portfolio of services includes all facets of strategy development of wellness hotels, resorts and destinations. Franz is a passionate strategist, mastermind and engineer in pioneering innovative hotel concepts. Prior to his consulting business, Franz studied sports science and literature in Innsbruck and Los Angeles. At the age of 28, he was appointed trainer of the renowned Austrian National Ski Team, overseeing all training programs of these exceptional athletes, among them Olympic champions and world cup winners.After his career as an Olympic coach, Franz set up his first consulting business for the wellness industry and established Austria’s largest wellness cluster, with more than a hundred wellness companies today. He co-founded a management company for medical resorts and, today, co-owns another hotel company which is managing innovative sport & outdoor focused hotels. Franz brought his vast experience in tourism also into politics, for example as a Member of the European Parliament in the 1990s. Since 2014 he sits on the Board of Global Wellness Summit. Franz is a frequent speaker at spa & wellness congresses worldwide. His passion and innovative visions are widely appreciated in the industry.
MUDr. Kateřina Smíšková
Leads the Spiral Spinal Stabilisation Method Centre in Brno focuses on paediatric patients with scoliosis Trains rehabilitation workers, therapists, trainers and masseurs
Kateřina Smíšková, M.D. is a rehabilitation expert focusing on children’s scoliosis. She is one of the authors of the Spiral Stabilization (SP) Method. …After studies of medicine on the Charles University in Prague, she worked at Dr. Smíšek’s Back-pain Clinic in Prague for 4 years obtaining expertise in rehabilitation. Then she extended her education in the Orthopedic clinic in Brno where she learned how to treat scoliosis from the orthopedic point of view. After 2 years of this training, she opened her own Spiral Stabilization Clinic in Brno. The clinic features two spacious gyms for group training and education as well as five offices for individual treatments. Currently 10 enthusiastic professionals are taking care of patients with spin disorders. In order to aid patients and professionals to set up individual plans and perform the SP exercises, she has created an application called “Spiralista” which can be downloaded to the mobile phones. Over the last 20 years Dr. Smíšková has trained more than 3000 rehabilitation specialists, therapists, trainers and masseurs to use the SP method for improving the quality of people’s life. In her center she now lives her dream, teaching patients how to work towards healthy, strong and pain-free bodies and a joyful life.
State Secretary for Tourism of the Republic of Austria
Susanne Kraus-Winkler, State Secretary for Tourism, has more than 40 years of practical experience as an entrepreneur in the hotel and restaurant business. … As an industry representative she worked in the hospitality industry, as well as in tourism consulting and academic lecturing. She was a founding partner of the LOISIUM Wine & Spa Resort Hotel Group, with the LOISIUM Wine World in one of Austrian’s leading wine regions, two wine & spa hotels in Austria and one wine & spa hotel in Champagne Region of France and one wine hotel project Alsace, France. In addition, she was partner in several hotel management and tourism consulting companies such as Kohl & Partner Vienna, RIMC Austria GmbH and the Harry’s Home Hotel group and advisory board member of MRP-Hotels, a hotel consulting company in Europe. Susanne Kraus-Winkler was HOTREC President from 2015 to 2018 representing the European Hospitality industry at EU level in Brussels, as well as President of the Austrian Professional Hotel Association within the Austrian Chamber of Commerce representing 16.000 hotels in Austria. She held several positions in the management board of tourism representations in Austria and at EU level and is member of the Austrian chapter of the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors.
Chairman of the Board for the International Spa Association
With over 20 years of experience in the global luxury hospitality and wellness industries, Patrick has built a dynamic career as an international leader within this elite field, running multimillion-dollar operations successfully by delivering the highest levels of performance and guest satisfaction.… Patrick has worked for such iconic brands as Four Seasons, Equinox and Sandals Resorts. Patrick is currently the General Manager of We Care Spa Wellness Retreat – a 28 suite holistic and wellness resort, sitting exclusively on 10 acres in Desert Hot Springs, CA. The resort focuses on a 360-degree approach to wellness, offering guided fasts and colonics, nutritional and emotional detoxes, and propriety massages and body treatments to help people reset their spiritual, emotional, and their physical health. Prior to We Care Spa Wellness Retreat, Patrick was the Vice President of Spa and Retail for Montage International. With Montage International, Patrick was responsible for the spa, fitness, and retail operations and brand visions of the company’s two hotel brands: Montage and Pendry. Patrick serves as Chairman of the Board for the International Spa Association – the premier spa association with a presence in over 70 countries that fosters the development and professionalism of the global spa and wellness industries. Patrick holds a Master of Fine Arts from Yale School of Drama in Acting and a Bachelor of Arts from Vanderbilt University in Creative/Nonfiction Writing, English Literature and Theatre. Patrick serves on the Advisory Council for Global Eye Entrepreneurs – a non-profit organization that serves to mentor and develop men of color who run their own companies. He is also the Creator and Host of the podcast and video podcast “At the Podium with Patrick Huey” which has reached over 600,000 people since its inception in 2021. Available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and YouTube, the show and its weekly newsletter focus on sharing the stories of people from a diverse background of lives, careers and experiences who have stepped boldly into saying “yes” to the unexpected and transformational detours of their lives.
Founder & CEO of the Gharieni Group
Sammy Gharieni is known for his visionary industry leadership and his pioneering spirit. He has built an extraordinary Wellness brand based on a DNA of innovation. … He began by revolutionizing the sector of treatment beds, more than 30 years ago, when he founded the Gharieni Group, realizing there were important gaps in the market that could be turned into singular opportunities. Today, the Gharieni Group has a 120-country reach, and is the leading company, and thought leader, in the area of spa, wellness, and medical treatment beds, furniture, accessories and Mind/Body Wellness Technologies.Sammy is the recipient of the coveted ´A Life of Beauty Award’ from industry event, Beauty Düsseldorf. His unique perspective, having been raised between Belgium and Tunisia, together with an education in Germany as an engineer, fuels his passion for driving innovation. He continues to travel the globe to find inspiration and new ideas to create new business opportunities and improve existing processes. His customer-centric mindset is always looking to improve service, curate experiences, and refine processes that will deliver exceptional value and support his customers’ businesses – while delighting the consumer with unique Wellness experiences.
Alina M. Hernandez
Wellness Programme Designer and Gharieni Group Advisory Board Member
An award-winning Wellness expert, and Concept creator, Alina is passionate about wellness, helping people change – and thrive. She brings more than 30 years of experience to the Wellness industry … including Wellness program creation and curation; protocol design; the Guest Journey experience; Mayo Clinic education/training in Health & Wellness Coaching; personal & organizational development; as well as community building practices. She is the co-founder of First 1000 Days of Wellness®; and her work has won wellness awards for properties in Mexico and Dubai. She is also sought after for creating content, covering health and wellness themes for seminars and conferences, internationally. Her multi/interdisciplinary approach brings additional layers to her deep knowledge of Wellness philosophies and includes Psychological Stage Development theories and models, Translational Medicine and Science – something that she has applied in the innovation of Evidence-based Wellness. She is trained in Authentic Somatic Movement, Vibroacoustics, and is certified in Value Systems and Design Thinking. She is a member of the invitation-only Global Wellness Summit and is the Co-chair of the Mental Wellness, and the First 1000 Days of Life, Initiatives of the Global Wellness Institute. She is a contributing author in “Mental Wellness: Pathways, Evidence and Horizons” and “The Innate Human Potential of Elevated and Ecstatic States of Consciousness,” as well as “The New Wellness” in PaperCity magazine (Houston & Dallas, Texas).
She is known for her outside-of-the-box thinking, her ability to innovate and see trends before they go mainstream.
Simon Lee Saunders
VP of Strategic Health & Wellness advisory at RLA GLOBAL
His multi-decade experience has been finely crafted through both professional and personal wellbeing experiences that distinguish his ability to connect with the most diverse projects. … Simon led the development and opening of a chain of several health clubs and spas for Europe’s largest operator of thermal spas and resort with Danubius Hotels Group. Furthermore, he integrated the sports activities, adventure & fitness into the wider hotel operations and the re-launch of the group spa offering. He has worked in the capacity of sales and marketing for the pre-opening of multiple stand-alone and hotel-based health clubs for the LivingWell brand (then part of Hilton Hotels) including exclusive clubs with celebrity, media and political membership bases in St. Johns Wood, The Langham Hilton Hotel and No.1 Millbank – Westminster in the UK. Simon has worked with the iconic Gold’s Gym brand in Iberia and Russia providing senior management, operational training and support for general managers & franchisees across the expanded territory. His health club experience also includes site selection, lease negotiations, tender, planning and fit-out processes for wellness clubs around the world. On a personal level Simon went through his own personal wellbeing journey in 2011, a year after running the world’s toughest footrace the Marathon de Sables in the Sahara, he overcame the greater challenge of cancer. Learning to thrive mentally and physically has become his personal focus. Simon was educated at the University of West London in Leisure & Finance and is a qualified personal trainer and athletics coach.
Global Senior Vice President Wellbeing of Accor
Emlyn Brown brings more than 20 years of international experience to Accor as the Global Senior Vice President Wellbeing.… Joining the Accor team in 2018, Brown began his wellness career in 1998 and has held several progressive management positions throughout Europe, The Middle East, and Asia since then. Over his career, Brown has led group operations of several leading luxury spa and fitness operators. During his time at Resense Spas S.A, he held the position as global design director and was responsible for managing corporate strategies, wellbeing concepts, and related design services. He also served as managing director of Asia at Resense Spas S.A, accountable for the management and growth of the portfolio in China and southeast Asia. Prior to that, Brown was the director at GOGO Hospitality and also held senior positions at Six Senses Resorts & Spas & Holmes Place Lifestyle clubs in Switzerland and Germany.
Senior Strategic Adviser - Six Senses Hotels Resorts Spas
Anna Bjurstam has been a leader in the wellness industry for the last 25 years. Being both a shaman, BioGeomerty diploma together with a Master’s Degree in Finance …and a passion in quantum physics and science, her experience spans over a variety of wellness fields. She successfully sold Raison d’Etre in 2013 and she is today the Strategic Advisor and Wellness Pioneer for Six Senses and Raison d’Etre, as well as an independent consultant and on number of boards including the Global Wellness Summit advisory board.
Editor In Chief - International Medical Travel Journal
Keith is one of Europe’s leading experts on private healthcare, health tourism and cross border healthcare, providing consultancy and research services, and attending and contributing to major conferences across the world on the subject …. He has been involved in private healthcare, medical travel and cross border healthcare since the 1990’s. Keith’s career has embraced the management of private hospitals in the UK, research and feasibility studies for healthcare ventures, the marketing and business development aspects of healthcare and medical travel and publishing, research and consultancy on cross border healthcare. He has been responsible for many initiatives in the sector including the first patient guide to the EU Directive on Cross Border Healthcare, a Code of Practice for Medical Tourism, a Good Practice Score for Cross Border Reproductive Healthcare, research into patient experiences of health tourism and an initiative to collect meaningful data in this emerging market.
VP of Spa & Wellness - Carillon Miami Wellness Resort
Tammy Pahel, VP of Spa & Wellness at Carillon Miami Wellness Resort and name American Spa’s 2019 Spa Director of the Year began her career in 1989 as Executive Director at Nemacolin Woodlands Resort … and led the property to a “Top Ten Spas” ranking by Conde Nast Gold List . She also led the spa operations for Arizona Biltmore Resort & Spa, The Spa at Caesar’s Palace and Deer Lake Lodge & Spa. Pahel is also the Founder & Principal of Spa Management Solutions, Inc., which she launched in 1999. Committed to having a prominent voice in the spa industry, Pahel served on the International Spa Association Board for four years and participated for an additional eight years on various ISPA committees and is currently the Director of Education for the SESSPAA. Pahel has been innovating her entire career and has been continuously elevating the spa and wellness experience at Carillon since 2017. With her forward thinking approach and strategic partnerships with leading global technology brands she has brought cutting edge technology and touchless services during a time when people are seeking different types of wellness services. Pahel strategically developed new revenue streams, increasing profitability and continues to enhance the guest experience more and more.