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Global Wellness Summit Announces
10th Anniversary Conference to Convene in the
Cradle of Wellness Tourism: Tyrol, Austria

Event co-chairs Susan Harmsworth MBE, founder of ESPA; and Dr. Franz Linser, founder, Linser Hospitality, and former Austrian Olympic team ski coach; Summit to take place October 17-19 in Kitzbühel, Tyrol, Austria


Miami, FL – February 16, 2016– The Global Wellness Summit (GWS) today announced that this year’s conference will be held in the European cradle of wellness tourism on October 17-19 at KitzKongress, Kitzbühel in Tyrol, Austria. Delegates, including leaders and visionaries from the $3.4 trillion global wellness industry, will be given the unique opportunity to immerse themselves in what many consider the most important wellness experience of all: the splendor of nature.

Nestled in the Austrian Alps, Kitzbühel is an authentic, medieval city and one of Austria’s best-known year-round sports resorts – home of World Cup ski races in the winter, ATP Tennis in the summer and, increasingly, a year-round destination as emphasized by its popular Kitzbühel 365 campaign.

Tyrol puts wellness at the center of its economy, and holds a unique place in wellness history as a pioneer, bringing people and businesses together to promote a region’s distinct health-focused offerings. It’s the location of the first wellness hotel collaboration begun 30 years ago; 15 years ago Tyrol introduced the idea of forming a wellness cluster bringing together public and private partners to use their synergies to increase competitiveness and inspire innovation. This model has since been emulated in other parts of the world and “Cluster Wellness Tirol” now boasts a member network of more than 120 wellness businesses.

“Tyrol, Austria is an amazing example of a destination that has centered its tourism initiatives around wellness, transforming the region from a single season, ski-only destination to a year-round wellness destination,” said Susie Ellis, GWS chairman and CEO. “The region has what wellness seekers want: natural surroundings full of remarkable beauty; fresh air, clean water; great, authentic, local cuisine; and plenty of outdoor space to stay active and in touch with nature.”

“This inspirational environment will no doubt help fuel transformative thought leadership about the future of wellness during the Summit,” continued Ellis. “I can’t think of a better venue for our tenth anniversary Summit – a kind of Wellness Davos.”

Sponsors responsible for attracting the 2016 GWS to Kitzbühel, Tyrol, Austria include Tirol Werbung, Tourism Board Kitzbühel and Wirtschaftskammer Tirol.

“Bringing the premiere wellness conference to Tyrol is extremely gratifying for our region and will help us put a global spotlight on something we started decades ago: wellness tourism,” said Günther Platter, Governor of Tyrol. “We look forward to welcoming the international community and exploring the exciting opportunities for the future of our remarkable region that offers so much of what people are looking for these days: the ability to slow down, get away and immerse in nature and joys of life.”

According to research from the Global Wellness Institute, Austria ranks first in Europe in wellness tourism expenditures per capita ($15.7 billion USD annually) and is the 5th largest wellness tourism market in the world with a modest population of 8 million. And Tyrol alone had a record-breaking more than 11 million guest arrivals in 2015, a remarkable achievement for a region with fewer than a million full-time residents.

This year’s event is co-chaired by two members of the GWS board of directors: Susan Harmsworth MBE, founder of ESPA, the internationally-recognized luxury spa brand; and Dr. Franz Linser, founder and managing director of international consulting firm Linser Hospitality. Linser, an Austrian native, was fundamental in establishing Cluster Wellness Tirol.

To learn more about the 2016 GWS, visit:

For sponsorship, contact Michelle Gamble ([email protected]).

About the Global Wellness Summit: The Global Wellness Summit (GWS) is an invitation-only international gathering that brings together leaders and visionaries to positively shape the future of the $3.4 trillion global wellness industry. Held in a different location each year, the Summit attracts delegates from all over the world. Summits have taken place in the U.S., Switzerland, Turkey, Bali, India, Morocco and Mexico City. The 2016 Summit will be held in Kitzbühel, Tyrol, Austria from October 17-19.


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