The Stars of the European Spas: ESPA’s Prestigious Innovation Awards

The European Spas Innovation Awards hold the highest prestige within the European Health and Spa industry and celebrate in the luxury Spa Hotel of Karlovy Vary in Grand Hotel Pupp with 350 Guests

On October 5-6, the 27th ESPA – European Spa Association congress happened in Hotel Thermal at Karlovy Vary with a record-breaking attendance of 310 participants. The congress included three central pillars of the ESPA association this year: the European Spas and Balneology Congress, the ESPA Innovation Award and the SPA-CE B2B workshop for spa and wellness tourism.

The Award Ceremony with a Gala Dinner where the most innovative European projects in the Spa and Health industry were announced was held in monumental Festive Hall of the Grand Hotel Pupp. Award ceremony was joined by a ground-breaking 350 attendees from more than 30 countries. This was the 10th ESPA Innovation Award competition and had applicants competing in 8 categories.

The primary aim of the competition is to foster the sharing of experiences, the dissemination of best practices, and the celebration of wellness, innovation, and excellence within the spa, well-being, and medical spa industry. Congress guests and participants of the B2B event were welcomed by Vlastimil Válek, Minister of Health and Petr Kulhánek,Governor of Karlovy Vary Region. Awards were also presented by UNWTO Europe representative Nina Kusar. The main partner of the event is SOTHYS Cosmetics, the exclusive brand for experience of global beauty by nature.

CONGRATULATIONS to the winners and special jury awards in 2023:

C1: INNOVATIVE SPA DESTINATION: Sts. Constantine and Helena – Bulgaria
The way and vision, the resort became a destination. St. Constantine and Helena offers year-round holidays, sea and wellness weekends, sports facilities, rehabilitation, health care and the best restaurants by the sea. A quality destination for modern travellers with a special touch of health.

C2: INNOVATIVE MEDICA SPA: UAB Eglės sanatorija – Lithuania
Innovation in the Digital world for medical spas. An innovative mobile app that benefits both patients and the clinic. With self-register upon arrival, the patients get their schedule and possible changes regarding treatments or other services on their phone, and the clinic can get various information from patient feedback. All information on 4 languages. Eglés Sanatorija has a focus on sustainability and this app works with that by using less paper and also by using solar power for energy.

C3: INNOVATIVE SPA HOTEL: Mövenpick Resort & Spa Fruske Terme – Serbia
Mövenpick Resort & Spa Fruske Terme created a thermal complex, equipped with 11 pools (5 indoor and 6 outdoor) healing thermo-mineral water pools, and a huge wet area with 12 different types of steam and saunas. Geothermal potential, solar energy and other eco-friendly protocols make it a real example of sustainability.

C4: INNOVATIVE SPA CONCEPT: Hotel Preidlhof GmbH – Italy
The Preidlhof Way, and 360° makeover- stimulate guests physically, energetically, spiritually, psychologically, socially, and emotionally and unite holistic, preventative, and medical health retreats in a sustainable spa complex. Last year was certified as a “Quiet Place” for the silent beauty of its natural surroundings.

Ensana created innovative way to make medical spa trendy and prevent diseases with a holistic approach based tailor-made programme with treatments from natural resources combined with the latest medical knowledge and devices. Personalized program for Healthy Aging, De-stress, Weight Loss.

C6: INNOVATIVE SPA PRODUCTS: Royal Spa, a.s. – Czech Rep
New concept: Sleep Balance. Civilization problems like Sleep disorders require holistic approach including prevention, high-quality diagnostics, innovative treatment and modern technologies. The rooms are equipped with biodynamic full spectrum led lights, and ensor pads in the beds placed under a mattress monitoring and evaluating the client´s vital functions. Clients attend chronobiologic phototherapy followed by exercises e.g., aqua fitness, Nordic walking or yoga lessons.

C7: INNOVATIVE SPA EDUCATION: Centrul de Cultura al Judetului Covasna – Romania
Scientific information about Mofetta as a very rare natural remedy from Covasna County in Transylvania is “translated” for the public through interactive maps, intelligent courses, information boards and books in many languages. A medical treatment delivered using modern methods such as e-books, smart lessons and QR codes. For children, access to interactive questions and edutainment exercises. Information for all target groups

C8: INNOVATIVE MEDICAL SPA SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH: Niedersächsisches Staatsbad Pyrmont Betriebsgesellschaft GmbH – Germany
Staatsbad Pyrmont: the study included all patients at Klinik DER FÜRSTENHOF in Bad Pyrmont for rehabilitations of osteoporosis between 2005 -and 2015. A total of 8392 patients were treated with specific therapy concepts and the use of natural remedies. The data suggest that early diagnosis of mastocytosis leads to a significantly better course and demonstrates to role of prevention in medical spas.

The expert Jury, led by the president of the jury Gunnlaugur K. Jónsson from Iceland, included experts with various spa profiles: Dr. Siyka Katsarova, Vice President of ESPA and medical tourism expert; Silvia Giannini, spa architect from Italy; Prof. Tododorka Kostadinova, Vice Rector of Varna Medical University from Bulgaria and Csilla Mezösi, SG of European Spas Association.

Siyka Katsarova, head of the Innovation Awards jury working group, emphasizes: “The competition is a kind of quality indicator for European health innovation in the spa industry. I am pleased to note that the diversity and quality of the competition is improving every year. The participants of the European Spas Innovation Awards motivate our members to make health tourism even more competitive with innovations and to present Europe’s leading and unique position in the use of natural remedies internationally better known.”

Take a look at the pictures from ESPA Congress 2023:

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