Meeting Planner's Guide to Group Wellness Activities in Asheville, N.C.
Asheville’s history as a place of healing and wellness has long inspired people from all over the world to experience the serenity of our mountain and forest landscapes. In turn, wellness experts in self-care, fitness, and cutting-edge experiences have also flocked here, cultivating one of the best spas in the world at The Omni Grove Park Inn as well as a wide range of healing products and adventures throughout the area.
As individuals and businesses both pay closer attention to health and wellness, Asheville provides an excellent destination to tap into ample opportunities for group wellness activities, including everything from yoga to hiking, sound healing to spa days at salt caves or saunas.
Plan a restorative break for your next group with one of these Asheville wellness experiences.
Book a scenic yoga hike with Namaste in Nature. Groups of 4-15 (larger groups can be staggered and/or utilize multiple locations) can choose from experiences that include easy or moderate hikes, plus waterfalls or panoramic views. Their most popular private group experience, the 3-hour Relaxing Waterfall Yoga Hiking Tour, incorporates a mix of meditation, yoga, and hiking that provides a relaxing and fun space to connect with co-workers.
Asheville Wellness Tours offers forest bathing sessions where up to 15+ participants can experience the healing power of nature. Inspired by the Japanese practice of Shinrin-yoku (literally “taking in the forest atmosphere”), these easy 2.5-hour walks are more about connecting with the natural world than they are about reaching a summit. Guides share mindfulness techniques along the way, and the experience concludes with a tea ceremony and snacks.
Groups can also hire Asheville Wellness Tours for yoga hikes, stand-up paddleboard yoga classes or even on-site mini-wellness breaks to break up those long conference days. Up to 200 participants can engage in 1-hour guided meditation sessions, or groups of up to 500 can offer their guests private yoga classes or mobile massage.
For groups who may be more interested in the cardiovascular benefits of a traditional hike sans-yoga, book a trek curated by National Geographic Adventurer of the Year Jennifer Pharr Davis and her guides at Blue Ridge Hiking Company. They will customize your hike to meet the needs and skill level of the group and can add on snacks, lunches or other experiences like kayaking or brewery tours.
Wellness For All the Senses
It’s not all about massages and exercise — all five senses provide access points for wellness and self-care.
Sound healing is a great option for groups seeking a peaceful, meditative experience that restores balance to the body. Billy Zansky, owner of Skinny Beats uses crystal bowls, gongs and other instruments to weave a relaxing soundscape for groups of up to 30 participants.
Smell your way to wellness at Adoratheraphy in downtown’s Grove Arcade. Groups up to 12 can book the store for a private aromatherapy session where they will learn how to use essential oil blends in daily self-care rituals. Add on a custom “auratherapy” reading where participants will have their energy fields photographed with a special camera, then interpreted by owner Laura McCann.
Food is also an essential ingredient in caring for the whole self, and there are plenty of nourishing, farm-to-table options to be found around town. Plan a group dinner at Posana, whose menu is packed with seasonal dishes that are 100% gluten-free, or cater a meal from 67 Biltmore, famous for their veggie-forward side dishes and salads.
Or learn how to cook your own delicious dinner at a group cooking class. Pick up new techniques for a vegetarian meal at The Asheville Kitchen, or choose from more than a dozen healthy cooking classes at Asheville Mountain Kitchen. Bright Light Wellness is another great option for group workshops on nutrition, health, and wellness — plus group acupuncture, tai chi and qi gon classes.
Make Them Feel Pampered
Of course, the stress of travel and being on a work trip means your attendees deserve a dose of relaxation. Book a corporate party for up to 40 at Sauna House, where guests will move from hot saunas to 53-degree cold plunge pools. Between cycles, they will enjoy heated benches, healthy beverages and a technology detox — no cell phones allowed here!
Feet tired from walking the expo floor? Book Wake Food Sanctuary for up to 8 guests to enjoy a restorative foot soak. Corporate parties include tea and beverage service, chair massages and optional epsom salt foot soaks.
At Asheville Salt Cave, where groups of 12 or less can book a private session amid 20 tons of pure Polish salt, designed to maximize the benefits of speleotherapy to bring the body back into balance. Small groups of up to 5 guests can book the private Hammam bathhouse, which is inspired by ancient Turkish and Moroccan traditions designed to exfoliate the skin.
Destination Management Company Coordinated Wellness Activities
Want help planning an amazing wellness experience for your group? Tap into one of two local destination management companies with decades-long experience creating customized group activities.
Ready to plan your next meeting in Asheville? The sales team at Explore Asheville is your best first point of contact to find the right fit for your next meeting in Asheville. We’ll save you time and effort by sending your RFP to the hotels that fit your criteria, coordinating your site visits, and will provide insider knowledge into the best venues for any size meeting. You also receive exclusive perks when working with us and your meeting may be eligible for our Have More Fun on Us incentive program.
“We chose Asheville for our conference not only for the beauty of the setting, but for its rich and diverse culture and support of the arts. As a very walkable city, Asheville provided our attendees a background of entertainment, amazing food, and creative drinks while learning about how to make a living in the field of jewelry and metals. The large amount of galleries in the downtown are provided for a rich exhibition crawl filled with unique and varied exhibitions.
Gwynne Rukenbrod Smith
Executive Director Society of North American Goldsmiths