Well-being while on the road

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Let’s Rise, the US$ 30 million brand campaign underscores how Westin tackles the travel and wellness trends unveiled in a new global survey

Westin Hotels & Resorts, part of Marriott International, Inc, recently unveiled its first global brand campaign in more than five years, taking on the disruptions, distractions and unpredictability of travel and empowering travellers to embrace well-being as a way to regain control of their routines and be their best while on the road. The US$ 30 million dollar, integrated advertising campaign – called Let’s Rise – communicates Westin’s commitment to its guests’ well-being before, during and after their stay. The Let’s Rise campaign will be featured in broadcast, digital, radio and out-of-home channels, with print placements to follow later this year. The Let’s Rise mantra will also serve as an anchor for the wellness programmes and partnerships that roll out for guests and associates throughout the year.

Westin’s Let’s Rise campaign is inspired by and illustrative of the wellness and travel trends fueling the future of both industries, as articulated in a new global study conducted in partnership with StudyLogic that surveyed travellers in North America, Mexico, the United Kingdom, Germany, the United Arab Emirates and China. The results show a seismic shift in the way today’s travellers prioritise their well-being. With less time and more disruptors on the road, they are reinventing business and leisure travel to put things like fitness first with new vigor to pursue mindfulness and adventure.

“Let’s Rise is perfectly positioned to connect with travellers as more of a rally-cry than a brand campaign, given today’s over-scheduled and always-on culture. Around the world, we are seeing travellers realigning their priorities to put their well-being first, and Westin is proud to empower our guests to rise to the occasion and be their best selves on the road,”  says Brian Povinelli, global brand leader, Westin Hotels & Resorts.

“Will you get up, or will you rise?”

Westin worked with San Francisco-based Venables Bell & Partners to develop the multi-faceted campaign, consisting of multiple executions in which travellers take control of their well-being.  Illustrating guests enabled to wake up early for a run, stay on track with healthy eating goals, and find time to revitalise with an incredible night’s sleep, the campaign aims to connect consumers to the signature programmes inherent in Westin’s DNA – from the iconic Westin Heavenly Bed to its workout Gear Lending programme in partnership with New Balance – all designed to embody the brand’s six pillars of well-being: Sleep well, Eat well, Move well, Feel well, Work well, and Play well.

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Because morning is the first and best opportunity to take control of the day ahead, the campaign uses morning light as a consistent creative device to speak to the potential that the morning holds. Overall, the campaign calls consumers to answer a simple question, “Will you get up, or will you rise?”

The global study shows seismic shift in travellers’ well-being:

1. Unpredictability of travel sees stress skyrocket in 2017: Guests around the globe turn to wellness to regain control

In the last three years, rising wealth and digital connectivity have prompted a significant spike in global travel and the unpredictability that accompanies it.  It is no surprise then that nearly three in four travellers report they have trouble maintaining their routine on the road. More than 60 per cent say they sleep less, 65 per cent say they exercise less, and 15 per cent report increased stress levels on vacation, a time traditionally thought of as downtime for rest and relaxation.

Also surprising is the growing number of guests around the globe who are turning to wellness to regain control of their routines when travelling for business and leisure. Thirty per cent of those surveyed in Germany and more than 20 per cent in UAE say well-being enables them to feel more in control, while nearly 15 per cent globally say it reduces their stress levels.  Almost one in four of those surveyed in Germany and North America say wellness allows them to be better in business; in Mexico and the UK, one in four say wellness enables them to feel happier.

“Around the world, we have definitely seen a shift in the way today’s travellers are incorporating well-being into their work and travel routines: from millennials, who view fitness activities to be more social than competitive, to business travelers who are shifting their preference from country clubs to running clubs. We have even seen honeymooners embrace well-being more holistically; in the US alone, 80 per cent of couples reported being more active and health-conscious during their honeymoon than at home. And, 40 per cent are running together as a way to decompress, disconnect and be a tourist at the same time,” continued Povinelli.

Westin continues to evolve its programmes in lockstep with the increasing global demand for well-being and the holistic role it plays in peoples’ lives. This year, hotels around the world will unveil updates to the signature 24/7 WestinWORKOUT fitness studios, reflecting how people are exercising today with more stretching, strength and core equipment.

The brand will continue to grow its Gear Lending partnership with New Balance, giving guests access to workout gear without the hassle of packing it, and introduce additional RunWESTIN Concierges, who encourage runners of all levels to grab a running map and join them on scenic routes through cities, along beachfronts and amid rural landscapes.

Known as the premier brand truly committed to helping guests get a good night’s sleep, Westin will introduce a complimentary Sleep Well Lavender Balm bedside amenity, infused with the calming essential oils of lavender and chamomile. This is the latest in a series of sleep offerings that promise a better slumber for travellers, including the iconic Westin Heavenly Bed.

This follows on the heels of a refresh to the signature White Tea Aloe Bath & Body products, which have been reformulated and redesigned to be paba-free, paraben-free, and dye-free – leaving guests rejuvenated, revitalised and ready to take on the day ahead. The shampoo, conditioner, body wash and body lotion feature natural ingredients, including aloe, pea extract, shea butter, tea extract and jojoba oil.

2. High octane or balanced breathing: Mindfulness & adventure travel meet as the next “Tribe Workout”

Once reserved for a select few, mindfulness and adventure travel have become increasingly popular as a way for guests to disconnect, reconnect and explore a destination. Globally, the number of travellers who will plan adventure excursions in the next 12 months has doubled in the last three years. In Mexico, it has tripled. And surprisingly, more than 50 per cent of global respondents say they plan to seek mindfulness opportunities to clear their minds and center themselves during the chaos of travel.

Propelled by these trends, Westin continues to introduce programs, partnerships and hotel positions that cater to this growing guest demand.

Recently the brand saw a new crop of concierges emerge, who are experts in high-octane activities from heli-skiing to kite-surfing at hotels from The Westin Turtle Bay Resort & Spa in Mauritius to The Westin Resort & Spa in Whistler, B.C.

Surprisingly, many Westin hotels have also seen a spike in travellers fusing meditation with more physical activities and approaching mindfulness with a similar communal or tribe workout mentality.  Yoga and meditation have been incorporated into high-intensity hikes and cycling classes by popular demand at Westin hotels in cities like Atlanta and resort destinations like Bear Mountain.

Striking a chord with another emerging trend, last month the brand rolled out a variety of adult colouring sheets exclusively available at 50 Westin hotels and resorts across Asia Pacific. Created by celebrated illustrator Johanna Basford, who spearheaded the worldwide adult-colouring phenomenon with the debut of her 2013 bestselling book Secret Garden, the drawings are designed to helping travellers relax, re-center and unwind on the road.

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