Digital detox holidays: Switching off from technology dependency

donderdag, 01 oktober 2015 - Categorie: Berichten Internationaal

Bron 1: .
11 maart 2013

If modern technology means we can be connected anywhere, then how do we switch off? Digital detox holidays are the latest trend for holidaymakers who need to curtail their technology dependency.

There are clear benefits to be derived from the ubiquity of technology in our daily lives, but if mobile phones, constant internet access and multiple social media accounts mean we’re always on call then how can we switch off? The dilution of holiday time is a case in point. A recent American Express survey found that 83 per cent of holidaymakers expect to stay digitally connected during their break, and 64 per cent of those expect to check their work email daily while on leave. With so many of us allowing our working lives to infiltrate our leisure time then opportunities to truly relax are severely curtailed.

Recognising that some consumers want to sever their constant dependency on technology, a number of companies are now offering experiences that allow us the opportunity to switch off temporarily. In January, Selfridge’s opened a felt-covered Silence Room, where shoe-free, phone-free shoppers can retreat from the hubbub of frenetic Oxford Street. Around the same time, ‘No Wi-Fi’ benches which block Wi-Fi signals within a five-metre radius were erected in central Amsterdam. Urging people to ‘take a break’, they were sponsored by Kit Kat.

And away from busy shopping streets, other travel and leisure companies are cajoling customers into switching off too. In LA, Eva Restaurant is offering diners a 5 per cent discount if they leave their phones with the receptionist. More demanding is the ‘digital detox’ holiday on offer at Palm Island and Young Island on St Vincent and The Grenadines. Guests booking ‘de-tech’ packages will be asked to hand over their electronic devices at check-in and can avail of the services of a life coach if they need guidance on how to use their free time productively.

A number of options are available for travellers who need even more drastic intervention. At Jongomero safari camp in southern Tanzania, connectivity-craving guests who sneak an illicit smart phone into their room are still foiled from going online. The site offers no mobile-phone reception, Wi-Fi or television sets. Stay at Three Camel Lodge in Mongolia’s Gobi Desert and there’ll be no chance of you tweeting a quick snap of the endangered Bactrian camels that roam the surrounding area – the nearest Wi-Fi point is 300 miles away in Ulaanbaatar.

Often thought of as an encumbrance, isolation is now a selling point for stressed-out travellers. And the benefits of a digital detox are numerous and significant. In a New York Times discussion on the subject, Nicholas Carr, author of The Shallows: What the Internet is Doing to Our Brains comments that constantly flitting from one forum or application to another is associated with “shallower thinking, weakened concentration, reduced creativity, and heightened stress.” Limiting the digital bombardment we’re accustomed to will reduce the cognitive and emotional stress we’re constantly exposing ourselves to. His views are supported by other experts who show similar concern for the elevated stress levels we face through being constantly on call, always searching for the next message or text that requires our attention.

An easy test to see how your concentration span is faring is available on the website Do nothing for 2 minutes. Users are asked to observe the static seaside scene and listen to the sound of the waves for two minutes. Give it a go. If you last the two minutes perhaps you’d enjoy a digital detox holiday, and if you don’t, you probably need it.

Bron 2:
25 sept. 2015

In an age defined by information overload, the pinnacle of luxury travel lies in the ability to mentally and physically switch off and reconnect with your surroundings. Design Hotels™ presents six hotels from all four corners of the globe that are hitting pause on the technological treadmill of modern life.

Insólito Boutique Hotel, Búzios, Brazil
Located just two hours away from the bright lights of Rio de Janeiro, the 24-room Insólito Boutique Hotel couldn’t be further from the urban metropolis in spirit. Perched on a rocky hillside overlooking the stunning Ferradura Beach, the hotel embodies the tranquility and relaxed atmosphere of a private home, while promoting a meaningful connection with the environment. The solar-powered guestrooms have been individually designed by owner Emmanuelle de Clermont Tonnerre with arts and crafts by local artisans alongside sustainable furniture crafted by Brazilian carpenters from reclaimed timber.

Wiesergut, Hinterglemm, Austria
When Originals Josef Sepp and Martina Kroll transformed a 13th century family estate into the 24-room retreat, Wiesergut, organic warmth and comfort were at the forefront of the design and concept. Located in the valley of Hinterglemm, just a couple of hours outside of Salzburg, the contemporary refuge offers the slowed rhythms of mountain life. The Alpine hideaway’s homespun luxury comes in the form of locally produced furniture and textiles, and the sublime locale – steps away from top-notch hiking and skiing. The hotel’s garden suites have spectacular floor-to-ceiling windows which flood the interiors with sunlight, as well as cultivating the slippage between inside and out, old and new.

Hotel La Semilla, Playa del Carmen, Mexico
Carefree simplicity reigns at the 9-room Hotel la Semilla, located a stone’s throw from the shores of Playa del Carmen. The building, which dates back to 1990, has been minimally refurbished by architect Jaime Inglemo to retain its local authenticity. Natural materials such as stone, polished concrete, and bricks were used to create the hotel’s earthy vibe. A soothing neutral color palette pervades all spaces, and plenty of lounging nooks afford ample idle moments. Suites, such as the Terraza, even have outdoor baths for the ultimate laidback lifestyle.

Laluna, St George, Grenada
Surrounded by emerald hills, crystal waters, and leafy bougainvillea-filled grounds, Laluna is Grenada's hidden secret. Sixteen traditional thatched-roof cottages designed by Gabriella Guintoli and Carmelina Santoro feature open-air bathrooms and bedrooms that open onto bamboo-framed verandas with plunge pools. To aid in the unwinding, daily beachfront yoga classes of Hatha, Kundalini and Vinyasa are on offer while the Asian Spa program focuses on traditional Balinese massage techniques.

Vigilius Mountain Resort, Lana, Italy
With a location in South Tyrol 1,500 meters above sea level and only accessible by cable car, unplugging is practically mandatory at the 41-room Vigilius Mountain Resort. Here, Milan-based architect Matteo Thun used wood and glass to blur the lines between architecture and nature. Surrounded by the ever-changing colors of the Dolomites, sample tried-and-tested Tyrolian skin treatments using ground apple and corn peels, take up aqua pilates, or feast in one of the world-class restaurants. Any remaining stress or worries will soon be eased away by the pure and crisp Alpine air.

The Surin Phuket, Thailand
Nestled into a beachfront coconut grove on Pansea Bay’s shores, The Surin Phuket’s 103 cottages and suites were created by architect and designer Ed Tuttle with the guiding philosophy that wherever one looks, an interesting perspective can be seen. An easy blend of purity, serenity and an attention to nature is achieved with panels of woven palm fronds, granite floors, and natural materials. Relaxation takes many forms in paradise, from seaside dining at The Beach restaurant, swimming in the onyx-tiled pool, to the three nearby golf courses.

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