Insights Into Wellness: How Holistic Treatments Have Long-Term Benefits

A famed spa director and yogi reveals the healing power of herbs and other therapies that can we can integrate into our daily lives.

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Photo Credit: Beth Doane
Photo Credit: Beth Doane

When it comes to wellness, Vanessa Infante believes it’s about more than temporary relaxation — it’s about helping rejuvenate your body and mind for long term health. This is the philosophy she’s brought with her to Viceroy Los Cabos, a stunning resort on the Sea of Cortés, its architecture an homage to water and the experiences it offers a tribute to holistic relaxation and enrichment.

It seems only natural that Infante would find herself here, after over a decade of working for spas at top luxury hotel brands, winning accolades from the likes of Travel + Leisure and Conde Nast Traveler, and studying with yoga gurus. Under her guidance, the spa’s offerings are innovative, imaginative and transformational, based on her own personal health challenges and what she’s gleaned over the years.

I spoke with Infante about what she’s learned about wellness — including the incredible healing power of herbs you could find in any garden — and how you don’t have to travel to Mexico to recreate the restorative benefits of Infante’s spa at home.

Beth Doane: W​hen did you first become interested in wellness as a career?
Vanessa Infante: I’ve been passionate about fitness and exercise since I was twelve years old. By the age of 15, I was working as a fitness instructor at various neighborhood gyms and schools. Over time, I translated these efforts to teaching yoga and various massage techniques, which is when I realized I wanted to dedicate my career to wellness. I started my own yoga center and spa when I began working at Viceroy Rivera Maya, and I’ve been fortunate to collaborate with phenomenal hotel brands.

Photo Credit: Beth Doane

Doane: Mexico has a rich heritage of healing arts and using medicinal herbs — as a spa director, how have you incorporated these healing traditions into your services?
Infante: We specialize in customized services that are based on Mexican traditions. We create mists with herbs and flowers that are offered during the Spa Thermal Journey Experience, which are meant to help align the body and fight fatigue. We begin every spa service using natural herbs as aromatherapy. We also make all of our teas and waters with herbs. Apart from using what we find in nature, we also tout a list of unique, powerful healing services such as Biomagnetism and Bach flower remedies.

Doane: How do you personally practice wellness?
Infante: I have been practicing Kundalini Yoga since 2003, and I went to Mysore, India, in 2017 to learn Ashtanga Yoga with BNS Iyengar. My morning routine includes walking on the beach
and practicing yoga almost every day. I’ve also been a vegetarian for over 15 years.

Photo Credit: Beth Doane

Doane: What are the benefits of hot and cold plunge? Your spa has this feature and it’s becoming so much more popular.
Infante: The use of contrast hydrotherapy — submerging the body in warm water for several minutes, and then submerging it in cold water — helps to relax the muscles, activate the circulation and support the body in detoxing.

Doane: Even if people aren’t able to visit Mexico, how can they find the benefits of these treatments in their daily lives?
Infante: The Herbal Dream Catcher was inspired by the healing techniques of indigenous traditions. There’s a belief this treatment moves energy that is blocked in the body with the use of trigger points and natural herbs. If you can’t make it to Mexico but want to clean your energy, you can rub your body with natural fresh herbs such as rosemary, sage, spearmint and basil.

Doane: What has been the hardest challenge you have had to overcome personally, and did you use wellness or other natural methods to overcome it?
Infante: In 2014, I developed a tumor in my tongue. With the use of biomagnetism and changing to an alkaline diet, the tumor disappeared, and I was healthy again.

Doane: What is your favorite quote?
Infante: Life is too short to waste time. Dare to reach your maximum potential.

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