Integrators at Work: Jeremy McCarthy, Starwood Hotels

Jeremy McCarthy manages the worldwide spas of Starwood Hotels, where he works, as his Twitter bio says “…at the intersection of wellness, positive psychology and hospitality.”

He also writes a very insightful personal blog, The Psychology of Wellbeing
in which he draws on wide range of current developments in personal health, wellness and healing approaches and the science behind them.

In a recent post on his blog he told an interviewer from a spa consulting firm:

“My real interest is in holistic wellness. The reason I study and write about psychology is because I feel like that is the part that is undervalued in most health models. Even in the spa industry, where we talk a lot about ‘body, mind, spirit,’ we could do better at really understanding the science behind people’s mental and emotional states or their sense of meaning and spirituality.”

Spas with far more local clientele than Starwood have gradually been introducing healing therapies to their services and looking at the new generation of personal wellness tools now being developed.

In a recent report from the 2011 Global Spa Summit held in Bali (of course), Jeremy wrote: “One surprising trend that came up again and again in multiple sessions during the summit was the concept of personal biological monitoring—people using technology to keep track of their own health metrics.”

As he points out, these monitors and sensors are very early in their development. It is interesting to see where innovations like these are appearing and how wellness service providers like spas are broadening the context and value of their offerings. With 300 Starwood properties to worry about, Jeremy has a truly global wellness perspective from which to draw.