Capella builds on wellness credentials

Capella Hotel Group has recently added new wellness initiatives to its portfolio of inspired wellness resort openings, with the group exploring mindfulness, mental health and even longevity, as key themes of its upcoming properties


Patina Hotels & Resorts, part of the Capella Hotel Group, recently unveiled the name of its upcoming property in China, Patina Tianjin. Located in the Hebei District, this new property is a collaboration between Tianjin Hebei District Industrial Development Group and Capella Hotel Group.

The new hotel hopes to build on the Patina promise of wellness, with Patina Hotels & Resorts launching its newest wellness initiative ‘Pathways’, curated immersive experiences that aim to spark personal growth.

Cristiano Rinaldi, President at Capella Hotel Group, tells TTN Middle East in an interview: “Pathways enables guests to experience something different, to be part of the ecosystem. It is also a personal improvement journey, but it’s really being able to see if we can have guests leave the resort with some changes in their life beneficial to their well-being, to their personal growth, but as well as have a positive impact on the environment.”

The first Pathways experience was a four-day festival of arts, music and knowledge exchange called Cosmopolitan Ocean, which saw collaborations with artists such as Chris Stamp, Avery Whitmore, Pamela Longobardi, and Kelly Lee Owens.

“The idea is really for our guests to connect, both socially and emotionally. So, the focus is on personal growth and ultimately, regenerative rest and wellness.

“We have a series of activations planned throughout the year, in line with our story of gaining new life habits. We want the guest to leave somehow with awareness that they could take those insights back home,” he adds.



Capella also had a big announcement at ILTM Cannes; it was launching a project called ‘Senses of Cappella’, wherein each of its properties would represent one of seven senses: sight, spirituality, taste, touch, sound, movement, and smell. Any itinerary built in these hotels would take the theme into consideration.

In Sydney, for example, guests are given an itinerary that includes a private experience guided by a culturist through the streets of Sydney followed by a visit to China Heights Gallery hosted by artist and owner Edward Woodley. Guests dine within the gallery with lunch served by Sydney neighbourhood restaurant Nomad, while they meet and engage with Otis Hope Carey, who has contributed murals at Capella Sydney and Singapore. Guests are welcomed to sit and observe the creative journey of Otis as he begins work on a piece especially created for the guest.

At the Capella properties, the aim is to have guests forge an emotional connect with their surroundings. “It’s a bit like knowing a wizard. It’s someone that helps you to open all the doors that you need to open and he knows all the secrets. The idea is that whenever you visit one of our hotels, you leave the country of the destination with knowledge of the destination and really with an emotional connection,” says Rinaldi.



The Capella Group is primed for growth in the upcoming years. “We are still finalising but we’re probably looking at about 25 hotels between now and 2028-29,” he explains.

“Over the next three years, we’ll start with our presence in Saudi, the first one being in Riyadh. And then looking at looking at the pipeline, we will open Capella Taipei in the first quarter of 2025. Then we’re going to beautiful Kyoto in the second quarter of the same year. Then on to Capella Florence, Capella Nanjing and Capella Yang Yang, in Korea, which is going to be our first fully dedicated wellness resort.

“And then we go to the north of Japan to Hokkaido, the Seco Ski Resort, and then a second property in Saudi on the Red Sea. And then a third property in Saudi that’s part of the Neom project on the Gulf of Aqaba.”

He adds: “We have Patina Osaka coming up in the first quarter of 2025.”

And the company is on the lookout for opportunities in the Middle East, especially in Dubai and Oman.



The focus of these Capella hotels, however, is more than just wellness, says Rinaldi. “We’re looking at new things. We’re looking at working with partners creating fitness programmes. We don’t want to focus just on mindfulness, mental health, meditation, nutrition, but we’re also looking at longevity, which is huge right now.

“Fitness is another element that too often gets overlooked, we’re looking at rooms that are basically built around a fitness regime, including nutrition. The whole destination takes a wellness approach. So we programme all 3/5/7 days of a person’s visit, but we want to keep it fun. We don’t want to become a clinic where you go detoxing. It needs to be a combination of a wellness journey that also includes the fun part.”

As for who the hotels cater to, Rinaldi admits that for now, it’s mostly Southeast Asians. “40 per cent South Asian, a big percentage from the US. Also, obviously because of certain destinations like Maldives, Singapore, we get a mix of Europeans. It is pretty well balanced.

“We have noticed that people from the Middle East markets like to experience the new properties. So when something opens and there’s something new then in the first few months they come. Then it becomes more European-Asian-American base,” he adds.  




Patina is focused on the environment – and has certifications to prove it. “All our properties are EarthCheck-certified. The intention is to make sure we truly believe and deliver on our promise,” says Cristiano Rinaldi, President at Capella Hotel Group.

It might be focused on the environment, but says Rinaldi, the company isn’t about greenwashing, it genuinely cares about the environment.

He recalls the first Patina, which was built in Maldives, Fari Islands. “Our villas were prefabricated in Europe. And then they were installed on the island to reduce the amount of impact that would have on the environment. The majority of the palm trees on the island were actually saved [from] a neighbouring island that was converted into a local airport. They were going to cut and just dispose of the trees and we basically shipped them over and replanted them on the island. We recycle everything [including] the shower heat. There is no plastic presence on the island. And six years ago, it was just a shallow lagoon and now it’s four manmade island resorts built in total respect for the environment. Not a single coral reef was touched.”

He adds that both Patina and the umbrella it’s under, Capella Hotel Group, are committed to the environment. “Both Capella and Patina have different levels of involvement, but both brands are very active towards the environment,” he says.