Introducing a journey into the epitome of luxury and wellness at sea, our founder Sandra Nassima sits down with Julanda Marais, the Senior Lead Spa & Wellness/Head of Spa & Wellness at Explora Journeys. Nestled within the opulent confines of the Geneva-based MSC Group vessel, the Explora Journey transcends the traditional cruise experience, offering a haven of tranquility and rejuvenation amidst the waves. With a capacity to accommodate 922 passengers and 737 crew members, this floating sanctuary embodies the essence of a high-end hotel at sea. In this exclusive interview, Julanda divulges the secrets behind Explora Journey's wellness philosophy, delving into the intricacies of their spa offerings and the integration of Depuravita inner beauty products. Join us as we embark on a voyage of exploration into the world of luxury cruising and holistic well-being, where every moment aboard is an indulgence in self-care and rejuvenation.

Can you elaborate on Explora Journeys' "Ocean State of Mind" concept and how it influences your approach to luxury travel experiences?

Inspired by the sea, the “Ocean State of Mind” is a philosophy that goes beyond the traditional concept of ocean travel, it’s about creating a luxury travel experience that is immersive, relaxing, and truly holistic. The ocean relaxes you and creates an energy in you that inspires inner and outer discovery, broadens horizons and triggers new connections. The ocean connects you with yourself, people and the places around you. We call it the Ocean State of Mind: A state of mind inspired by the blue waters of our seas and oceans. A state of mind that has helped create Explora Journeys. One that is characterised by calm, unity, elegance and joy, that encourages inner and outer exploration and

Its influence sits at the heart of the Explora Journeys brand. It’s why all that we do is designed to offer refined yet effortless luxury, with the opportunity for exploration and transformation of the inner and outer self, resulting in a state that is uniquely rewarding — physically, intellectually and spiritually.

The Spa Selection on Board Explora Journey

“Ocean State of Mind, A state of mind inspired by the blue waters of our seas and oceans."

How was the ocean wellness concept developed and integrated into the spa experience at Explora Journeys?

Inspired by the oceans’ natural forces, Ocean Wellness embraces the mystical power of the sea offering a holistic approach to rejuvenate both body and mind.
Embark on a transformative journey of inner discovery, where each experience is carefully crafted to enhance your energy, promote restful sleep, induce relaxation, foster mindfulness, and boost immunity. Immerse yourself in the calming and revitalising influence of the ocean, culminating in a profound sense of physical and spiritual renewal as you discover the Ocean State of Mind.
We are offering many options for guests onboard to embrace their Ocean State of Mind, including in the Spa and Wellness offering. Such as:

1. The Ocean State of Mind Ritual
The Ocean State of Mind Ritual is an experience where guests can join complimentary, featuring a few times per cruise/journey. This also allows our guests to reconnect with others – a meaningful in-person experience, since we all crave more opportunities to connect with others in an increasingly digital world.
It is a gathering designed to help guests centre and focus themselves on developing their ‘Ocean State of Mind,’ using rotating techniques of visualisation, breath work, sound therapy and meditation in this ever-evolving ritual.

We also incorporate the use of crystals such as
• Amethyst – calming
• Clear quartz – spiritual & energy cleansing + healing
• Lapis Lazuli – seeking wisdom & insight
• Aquamarine – cleansing & provides tranquillity

And sound therapy with bowls as well as the Aqua Koshi chime
We are helping guests find their `Ocean State of Mind` and centre themselves within that. Guests can daily tap into their ‘Ocean State of Mind’ and reap its benefits throughout their journey and beyond.

2. The Ritual of Ocean Renewal Spa Signature Experience - the foundation of our Spa menu as the signature experience
A holistic sensory journey, inspired by the revitalising properties of the ocean, designed to improve mind and body health. Release tension and quieten the mind with this holistic ritual inspired by the oceans’ mystical qualities and soothing power.
Highlights: Breathwork and ocean-inspired visualisation – sound therapy – top to toe hot oil pouring massage – facial lymphatic drainage with aquamarine crystals

3. Open Air Fitness
Working out with a 180-degree sea view whilst EXPLORA I navigates at sea, creates an instant wow and spreads the Ocean State of Mind.
Guests can use Skillrow, GroupCycle bikes and also Technogym Bench in the way they most prefer: they can choose to train individually, receive support from a qualified personal trainer, or participate in exciting and engaging fitness classes.
We also have a variety of virtual training experiences that features on the in-suite TV, that guests can use in conjunction with the Technogym Case or Technogym Bench in the privacy of their suite, whilst having that expansive ocean view.

Could you share insights into the most sought-after signature treatments offered at Ocean Wellness onboard Explora Journeys?

Medi-Luxe Facial Collection by Dr. Levy Switzerland – Swiss sophistication unrivalled Transform time and experience with the age-defying magic of Dr. Levy Switzerland's exclusive Medi-luxe facial collection aboard EXPLORA I. Indulge in ultimate luxury with our range of Ocean Wellness Spa treatments infused with Dr. Levy's transformative stem cell formulas. On board you can try out one of our many rituals, such as our Medi-Sculpt sessions, featuring the signature Levy-Tate lifting massage guaranteed to leave you feeling regenerated and to recontour your face's most delicate features.
Immune Support Massage to increase vigour, clearing the breath and strengthening immunity - combination of guided breathing, ayurvedic scalp massage freeing a heavy head and mind, combined with reflexology point to promote metabolic function and to aid gut health.
Also, longer wellbeing dedicated journeys for guests wanting an experience for two – Just the Two of Us, Enjoy the Private Spa Suite with steam shower and outdoor terrace, the perfect place to relax and celebrate your special moments together with your loved one. Enjoy a side-by-side full-body sea salt and plant essence exfoliation followed by a hot steam shower, infused with therapeutic oils that will allow you to completely relax and detox. Continue your journey with The Ultimate Bespoke Aromatherapy Massage and a Discovery Wellbeing Facial.

In your perspective, how do you envision the future evolution of wellness within the luxury travel industry?

With a continued focus on quality of health and emphasis on wellness in travel, it’s much more than a fad, it’s permanently changed how people think about travel. The wellness experience of spending a few days at sea during a cruise has come a long way in recent years and will certainly continue to evolve. We would certainly all want to live a longer, healthier, and happier life with meaning.