Looking to bring some inspiration and creativity to your next meeting? Perhaps it's time to take a hike. Research points to both the mind-clearing and brain-boosting benefits of spending time outdoors.
Encounters with nature are proven to help alleviate mental fatigue by relaxing and restoring the mind. A 2012 study from the University of Utah found that people immersed in nature for four days boosted their performance on a creative problem-solving test by an impressive 50 per cent. The results support what Albert Einstein once said: "Look deep into nature and then you will understand everything better."
Here are some top suggestions for your next nature-fuelled business retreat:
Loon Lake Lodge & Retreat Centre, Maple Ridge
Credit: Loon Lake Lodge & Retreat Centre
Located in scenic Maple Ridge, B.C., and less than an hour east from Downtown Vancouver, Loon Lake Lodge & Retreat Centre is a year round meeting, conference, event and retreat destination tucked in the heart of University of British Columbia's Malcolm Knapp Research Forest. Set on the edge of the breathtaking Loon Lake surrounded by nature's bounty, Loon Lake Lodge offers flexible accommodation, meeting space and catering for up to 174. What draw guests year after year to the Loon Lake Lodge is the peace, beauty and tranquility of Mother Nature. Loon Lake Lodge & Retreat Centre is open year round. For more information, visit www.loonlake.ubc.ca or call (604) 463-8149.
Tigh-Na-Mara Seaside Spa Resort & Conference Centre, Parksville
Credit: Tigh-Na-Mara Seaside Spa Resort & Conference Centre
Nestled within the woods on Vancouver Island British Columbia lays a rustic, oceanfront resort so spectacular it has to be experienced to truly appreciate all it has to offer. Located in picturesque Parksville, the all-season oceanfront resort is set in 22 acres of tranquil Arbutus & Douglas Fir forest with sweeping panoramic views of the Strait of Georgia and coastal mountains. Specializing in corporate meetings, incentives and retreats, the Tigh-Na-Mara offers 10,000 square feet of flexible meeting space and 192 guest rooms. Tigh-Na-Mara encourages clients and teams to reconnect in a stunning natural setting. For more information, visit www.tigh-na-mara.com or call (250) 248-1802.
Cheakamus Centre, Paradise Valley
Credit: Cheakamus Centre
Established in 1969, Cheakamus Centre is a unique environmental learning centre designed to provide exceptional learning and hospitality experiences inspired by nature. Located on 420 acres of ecological reserve in Paradise Valley near Squamish, B.C., inspire, relax, learn and reconnect in Cheakamus Centre's tranquil forest setting, the perfect year round location to retreat from today's non-stop hectic lifestyle. The friendly and knowledgeable team works with meeting planners to design and deliver a productive and successful meeting that integrates nature into the agenda. Enhance your meeting further by adding an experiential activity that highlights the distinct seasonal periods that characterize Cheakamus Centre. Proceeds from your meeting or retreat helps support the North Vancouver School District Outdoor School environmental leadership and learning programs. For more information, visit www.cheakamuscentre.ca or call (604) 898-5422.
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