Emlyn Brown has joined AccorHotels as vice president of wellbeing for its luxury portfolio and will work on spa and overall hotel wellness for brands such as Sofitel, Swissôtel, Fairmont and Raffles, among others. He will be based in Paris.
His role will cover everything from design and concepts to facilities and programming – all with a view to helping guests feel more energised and healthier than when they arrived. This is something the group refers to as ‘imperceptible wellness’. It includes working with Accor’s 250-plus spas globally, as well as having a hand in the design and function of guestrooms, the interaction of food and beverage with spa and fitness and the energy levels in public areas.
Brown joins the team at Accor in place of industry veteran Andrew Gibson, who was vice president of spa and wellness from 2014 to May this year, when he left to join the team at Larry Ellison’s Sensei.
Aldina Duarte Ramos and Lindsay Madden-Nadeau will report into him as directors of wellbeing. Both women have been in the spa industry for a number of years and are well-respected throughout the sector. Duarte Ramos works on wellness for Sofitel, Swissôtel and Pullman, while Madden-Nadeau focuses on Fairmont, Raffles and MGallery.
Before this move, Brown previously spent three years at spa consultancy and management company Resense Spas, where he was managing director of Asia, based in Beijing and then global design director, based in Switzerland.
He also did a five-year stint with GOCO Hospitality as director of spa operations, based in Bangkok.
In welcoming him to the team, Accor’s senior vice president of luxury brands, Rick Harvey Lam, says: “Emlyn will direct our global strategy in the pivotal area of wellbeing, enhancing our luxury offering through transformative guest experiences. His experience, skill set and leadership traits also position him well for future success within the group.”
Brown says: “AccorHotels’ discerning, affluent clientele are well-travelled and increasingly motivated by the opportunity to maintain and even improve their approach to health and wellbeing during their journeys.
“My goal is to surpass the expectations of our guests and to infuse their entire experience with opportunities for transformative, innovative and extraordinary moments of wellbeing.”
AccorHotels acquired FRHI Hotels & Resorts in 2016 for a reported US$2.7bn (€2.4bn, £2.1bn), making it one of the biggest hotel groups in the world. It has around 4,000 properties globally.
In a previous issue of Spa Business, we analysed what the merger and the move to overall wellness meant for group’s spa departments (see SB17/1 p76).