Introducing Karina Stewart
Karina Stewart is a practitioner of Chinese medicine and co-founder of Kamalaya Wellness Sanctuary in Koh Samui, Thailand. Karina will share her vast knowledge of holistic healing and wellness with us as a regular guest blogger for Healing Holidays.
Kamalaya is a multi-award winning Wellness Sanctuary and Holistic Spa, located on the beachfront tropical southern coastline of Koh Samui, Thailand. Founded by John and Karina Stewart in 2005, this oasis of calm offers a holistic wellness experience that integrates healing therapies from East and West, a breathtakingly beautiful natural environment, tantalizing cuisine, holistic fitness practices and customized wellness programmes and retreats ranging from Detoxification to Stress & Burnout, Ideal Weight, Optimal Fitness, Personal Yoga Synergy and the new Sleep Enhancement programme.
What led you to become one of the founders of Kamalaya Wellness Sanctuary?
The vision of Kamalaya began together with my husband John Stewart and has been from the beginning a joint vision of what we could create together drawing from our life paths and backgrounds as individuals. Core to this vision was not only to share what had so enriched our lives but also to create something that would have a positive impact in people’s lives, not only guests but also the team that are an essential part of Kamalaya. The concept was greatly influenced by our backgrounds, John spent 16 years living in an ashram in India, while I spent 15 years studying and practicing the healing and philosophical traditions of China and India.
What do you constitute as ‘real wellness’?
As I have a Master’s degree in Traditional Chinese medicine, ‘wellness’ has a perhaps more defined meaning for me: a philosophy and lifestyle that supports and promotes optimal health and vitality in our body, heart and mind, and spirit, and in our relationship to ourselves, our environment and our community. It is a life-enriching philosophy and lifestyle in harmony with nature.
Karina specialised in Traditional Chinese Medicine, Functional Nutrition (foods and supplements as medicine) and functional detoxification so it is no surprise that Kamalaya has adopted the Food as Medicine Approach in their extensive cuisine. The Kamalaya menu relies on fresh, organic produce and their menus include a selection of nutritious raw food dishes incorporating simple interpretations such as salads as well as appropriately cooked foods that have a highly digestible nutritional value.
(Re-posted from Kamalaya with permission)
Things that they could have done better:
- I was informed that alcoholic drinks were (unless imported) included in the price. This did not turn out to be true. Alcoholic drinks (whether imported or local) cost extra at the resort.
- My flights had to be rescheduled for reasons outside of the control of Healing Holidays. I was not initially given the reasons for the change, so had to ask for this. It would be better, whenever there is a change to the flights, if a reason for the change were found and communicated upfront."