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Behind the scenes at Raison d’Etre spa

Managing Director of luxury spa firm Raison d’Etre, Anna-Cari Gund has nearly 30 years of experience in the beauty therapy industry. Before joining the team earlier this year, Gund traveled the world to learn all she could about her profession, along the way sharing her knowledge with others in the industry. Here she tells us what makes Raison d’Etre so unique.

Ximena Daneri
Ximena Daneri ,

For some years now I have known Anna Bjurstam, the founder of Raison d’Etre, and our paths had crossed so many times that it felt very natural for us to finally work together. It is an amazing Company, built on extraordinary creativity and very special people.

Since its foundation in 1998 Raison d’Etre has consulted, set up and run over 120 spas in more than 70 countries. Spas are our passion, and Raison d’Etre is what we live for. Though our work has taught us a great deal about luxury, relaxation and indulgence, what finally sets us apart from the rest of the industry is our profound belief in the physical, mental and spiritual benefits that a spa can provide. We want to uplift people and give them back their inner balance. The success of a spa is built on authenticity and Raison d’Etre is the real thing.

The Grand Hôtel approached Raison d’Etre when they searched for a Spa Company that could offer a luxurious tailor-made concept with a Nordic design as well as a management contract.

The LivNordic concept has a set brand standard which means that we are very much involved with the design of every one of our spas. Our Nordic design, experience as well as the famous Scandinavian beauty are important pillars in the LivNordic Spa.

Our concept LivNordic is a blend of the long proven Nordic health traditions combined with the latest in spa and wellness. LivNordic is inspired by the extraordinary quality of living that defines the Nordic cultures. It was created after the Raison d’Etre team explored the spiritual, economical and social elements that makes Sweden one of the happiest, wealthiest, most beautiful and environmentally sustainable cultures on earth today. We wanted to create a spa brand that would express all this and support guests in achieving the balanced and healthy lifestyle enjoyed by the Nordic people.

A Spa is built around the four important cornerstones of wellbeing: healthy nutrition, regular exercise, peace of mind and care of the face and body. This is always the starting point when designing a spa and a tailor made brand.

It is important that the guest feels welcome, safe and pampered and this can only be achieved by having a well-trained, qualified and team of therapists lead by a Spa Director, who can deliver emotional hospitality.

Different massage techniques are and will always be the top treatments performed in spas and I think this will also be the case for this autumn and winter. In particular the genuine Swedish massage, where most muscle oriented techniques are derived from. This massage is also the foundation of Nordic wellbeing, together with innovative therapies, alternative medicine and advanced beauty.

I can share a few tips on spa etiquette. Leave your mobile phone in a locker; it is so important both for you and in order not to disturb other guests. Also, practice ´Spa-language’ – don’t talk too loud in public areas. After the treatment, if the therapist says, "take your time getting up," you generally have five or so minutes. But remember that the room must be prepared for the next client unless she or he says otherwise.

I guess when born in Sweden the nature and what it has to offer, inspires you. Being interested in wellness and living health comes naturally to us. For me being outdoors, fishing and walking in the forest gives me the inspiration I need in order to keep a sound mind and soul.

Raison d’Etre, Grevgatan 15, 114 53 Stockholm, +46 (0)8 756 0056



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