Batangas resort wins Oscars of Spa Industry

(via Inquirer) THE FARM at San Benito in Lipa City, Batangas province, has won the second AsiaSpa Baccarat Awards, considered the Oscars of the booming industry in Asia, in what is hailed as a boost to the country’s medical-spa tourism.

In a glittering black- and red-themed cocktail evening at the Grand Hyatt Hong Kong recently, the Farm came out on top, taking the coveted Medi-Spa of the Year as well as Spa Cuisine of the Year, bringing to 10 their total Asian awards so far.

Health resort president Perla Espino Rempe accepted two glass-sculptured Baccarat trophies for The Farm at San Benito.

She acknowledged a first award in the Medi-Spa category as “a well-deserved” one, but the other award for spa cuisine was “a sweet victory” for The Farm’s vegetarian food philosophy.

“What we thought to be our (marketing) weakness has now turned out to be our strength,” she said in her acceptance speech.

The Philippines was nominated in several other categories including Spa Academy of the Year (Spa Professionals International Development Center, Parañaque), Spa Association of the Year, Spa Destination of the Year and Spa Retreat of the Year (The Farm at San Benito).

Cathy Brillantes Turvill received a prestigious nomination for the first spa school in the country in the Spa Academy category, which was eventually won by Chiva-Som Academy of Thailand.

The selection by a panel of 26 Asia-based spa experts headed by AsiaSpa magazine editor Catharine Nicol and CEO Olivier Burlot gave local entrepreneurs an indication of where the lucrative wellness market is heading.

Over 180 spa industry VIPs, nominated spa representatives and personalities attended the awards night.

This year’s awards were dominated by Asia’s spa destinations, with India, Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines, The Maldives, Thailand, China, Malaysia and Hong Kong all winning awards.

The big brands and hotel chains did well in other categories. Four Seasons Resorts and Spas is Exterior Design of the Year for their resort in Langkawi and Marketing of the Year.

Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts collected Spa Treatment of the Year for their Himalayan Healing Stone Massage and Interior Design of the Year for their resort in Pudong, China.

Some surprises included Day Spa of the Year going to Kirana Spa in Bali and Spa Capital of the year moving from Bali to the Maldives.

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