Union Strength is a European journalism competition organized by Slate.fr in partnership with the European Commission. Forty French and European journalists have been chosen to work as a team to write articles on EU-funded projects in Europe. A perspective on what the EU can do in its regions.
In Brzewidz (Poland).
Barbara and Bartosh Edjak say they live on lavender. For more than eleven years, they have been growing this plant from the western shore of the Mediterranean in northern Poland and are constantly looking for new ecological solutions to introduce it to the family agritourism business in Przywidz. The couple decided to start their own business when they wanted to spend more time with their families instead of moving to work in Gdansk.
“Twelve years ago, we thought we could start growing lavender.says Bartosz Edczak. The beginnings were tough because it’s an area where you’re constantly learning something new. We were only able to grow a field of lavender after the third attempt.”
Today there are three lavender lodges in Lawendowa Osada, where guests can take a break from the hustle and bustle of the city and refocus on nature. Many of the products (such as lavender syrup, lavender hydrosol, tea) available are manufactured on the site’s agrotourism farm. The Swiss region of Kashubian, the Polish region in which the company is located, is rich in lakes and forests. No crowds of tourists, no morning traffic, no noise.
We try to provide our clients with spaces of freedom to reconnect with nature and completely detach from work.Barbara Edczak explains. Moreover, in the rooms of our farm, there is no TV; We offer other forms of entertainment: treatments at Lawendowe Wellness & SPA, board games, among many other activities. »
Idczaks understand that participation in the “SB WELL” project was important to them: it reinforced their idea that this type of tourism was currently in great demand. From the start, they cared about sustainable development: that’s why they were inspired to meet entrepreneurs who share the same approach.
Through the project, small and medium-sized companies from Poland, Denmark, Germany, Lithuania and Sweden joined forces to share their experiences in running a business with the aim of achieving well-being. Tourists will be able to use the online “Luxury Atlas”, which lists the places participating in the “Luxury Tourism” project, and plan their trip.
“I was very keen to show you the richness of nature and the different possibilities of rest in the Southern Baltic region, because we often go away on vacation and do not appreciate our region, where it is also possible to spend your free time”pleads Dr. Lally Lindell, at the origin of the Linnaeus University project. “Rest in the spirit of well-being means achieving a state of harmony, not only with oneself, but also with the environment.”
Thanks to the project, many companies realized that they are not the only ones in the Baltic region who are interested in the environment and communication with nature. Lena and Piotr, offering to rest in tiny wooden houses in Tofvehult, on the Swedish coast.
“Participation in the project allowed us to get a clearer look at our activity and also to get closer to this idea of well-being. We knew what goal to look for when developing our sales and marketing strategy. We draw inspiration from other members of the project. We feel that we really matter in this community and that we We contribute through our work to build a better world.”Says Peter.
The extraordinary power of amber became the inspiration for the Amber Dream factory in Sopot, near Gdansk in Poland, which makes natural pillows, said to have relaxing and health-promoting properties. The owners, Piotr Grabowski and Katarzyna Nowińska, previously slept on pillows stuffed with buckwheat husks that are said to have a positive effect on sleep quality. Inspired by their experience, they decided to do something to help prevent their child from waking up in the night.
“When we started our business, we wanted to make a hypoallergenic pillow for our daughter that would make it easier for her to sleep.recalls Piotr Grabowski. This is how we made a pillow filled with raw amber and buckwheat husks which prevents the formation of bacteria, mold and fungi. It does not cause allergies and allows air to circulate, which helps to regulate body temperature. Our daughter was able to sleep more quietly and for longer.”
“We wanted to create a world class product containing Baltic amber because it has always been a part of my story. My parents worked in creating amber jewelry. I wanted to create something unique with natural and environmental raw materials.”says Katarzyna Nowinska. Sopot plant strives to reduce waste production. It pays a great deal of attention to respecting the natural environment and promoting sustainable development.”
Cette société de la Tricité ne se contente pas de proposer de grands coussins garnis de cosse de sarrasin, mais aussi des coussinets que l’on peut placer sur les yeux et remplis de graines de la Baltique, d’ambre et de la Baltique lavender. Thus it is possible to calm down and isolate oneself from environmental stimuli.
Amber Sopot stuffed pillows. | Rachel Notto
Daiva and Donatas Abručiai’s approach to natural products is similar. They own a bee farm in the middle of a forest in northern Lithuania. From May to September, natural honey tastings and educational workshops are held there. Tourists can also benefit from bee therapy that relies on the vibrations of the hives.
Daiva Abručiai points out that in wellness tourism, environmental protection, tourists and service providers are equally important: “For example, flowering meadows not only bring joy to tourists, but also provide us with tea or honey, increasing biodiversity. The study trip to Sweden during which we met lovers of this type of tourism was very interesting. I did not think that a simple walk in the forest could That leads to a beautiful reflection, nor the fact that cooking local produce in the open air for an unforgettable lunch.
Beekeeping demonstration for tourists. | Diva Abrosisi
Relaxing in difficult times
The Five Senses Float SPA in Gdansk uses original relaxation techniques, using natural botanical beauty products and an experience “floating”. By floating in a pool containing water with a special Epsom salt, one will find a certain physical and mental balance.
“We have already conducted 10,000 ‘floating’ sessions during which our clients insulate themselves from external stimuli and focus on their feeling of deep relaxation.explains Carol of the Five Senses. Since the shutdowns, we’re seeing a huge need to take a break from remote and freelance work. More and more people are using ‘floating’ sessions regularly.”
Floating relaxation session. | Five Senses Float Spa
It is believed that the reason why many companies choose to move to wellness tourism is due to the anxiety caused by the climate crisis and the increased stress caused by the challenges of the contemporary world.
Translated by Cecil Piotrovska Foxiorop.
This article was produced as part of the Union is a power competition that has received financial support from the European Union. The article reflects the views of its author and the European Commission cannot be held responsible for its content or use.