Note from Ilana

Resilience and the Human Spirit!

Losing a friend, family member or colleague is one of the toughest experiences we can go through. We are all feeling the pain of loss at the recent passing of our friend David Bremer which has hit us hard and sent shock waves throughout our spa community. The outpouring of support from our community has shown just how much he meant to us. David was a kind and beautiful man inside and out and adored by many. His infectious smile will forever remain in our memory. As one of our colleagues eloquently posted on social media, “David, you are more than a friend and colleague, you are my brother. A brother who lights up a room and makes us all smile with his smile. Keep us smiling!” David was also a valued FSA team member from the very beginning, 14 years ago. He was instrumental in helping get the FSA off the ground, working on membership and later on education. Even after he stepped away from an active role, he remained a loyal member and was always ready to help in any way he could. He was a wonderful person and will be deeply missed by all who had the privilege of knowing him. In times like these, we come together to support one another. We may never fill the void left by David, but we can honor his memory by being there for each other. Our thoughts are with his wife Kimberlee and his family during this difficult time.

We also experienced another loss on the afternoon of Sept. 28, when Hurricane Ian hit Florida and was classified as a category 4 hurricane, hitting wind speeds of up to 150 miles per hour and causing devastation to many parts of the West Coast of Florida. This was truly heartbreaking and our sentiments go out to those who have been impacted by Hurricane Ian. We were deeply saddened to hear about the loss of life and damage caused by Hurricane Ian. The FSA has donated to the Professional Beauty Association’s (PBA) Disaster Relief Fund, to help those in the spa and wellness industry affected by natural disasters. We are proud to support our spa community in need and help them rebuild their lives. We are committed to helping raise awareness of this organization. If you would like to join us and make a donation, click here. If you have been impacted by Hurricane Ian and need assistance, you can apply to the fund here.

Our Florida spa community has always been known for its resilience. In the face of tragic losses, hurricanes, a pandemic and/or change, we have always shown an amazing ability to pick up the pieces and rebuild. And now, in the midst of losing a friend and a natural disaster, our community is once again demonstrating its strength and resilience. Despite the challenges we currently face, our community is coming together to support each other. Together, we get through tough times. And when we do, we come out even stronger and more united than ever before.

Wishing wellness



David Bremer

April 9,1968 - October 3, 2022

It is with deep sadness and a heavy heart that we share the news of the sudden passing of our dear friend and colleague, David Bremer. David tragically

passed away while on vacation, hiking on the Appalachian trails

with his loving wife, Kimberlee Geng on October 3rd

David was warmhearted, kind and considerate, an easy going gentle soul.

He was a beloved friend and member of our spa community and we will miss him dearly. Our hearts go out to Kimberlee and all of David's loved ones during this difficult time. David will be deeply missed by all who knew him.

Rest in peace, David. You will be forever in our hearts.

Breast Cancer Awareness Month

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month,

an annual campaign to raise awareness about the impact of breast cancer.

Your network is powerful!

Use your voice, passion, and resources to help reach every woman and make sure she has access to the screenings, support, and care she deserves.


Congratulations to our Movers & Shakers

 Our extraordinary Spa Industry is continuously evolving through innovation and transformation.

Highly appreciated professionals in the Spa community take on new challenges and positions

as they start a new venture in their career.

Laura Martinez – Senior Director of Spa & Wellness , Four Seasons, Surf Side

Congratulations to Laura Martinez for her recent promotion to Senior Director of Spa and Fitness at Four Seasons , Surf Side. A veteran and talented leader, this well-earned and well-deserved promotion comes from 4 ½ years of commitment and spear-heading her spa staff to provide excellence at her spa. With 19 years of experience in the luxury hospitality industry, Laura has proven to be a devoted, resourceful, detailed and results-oriented spa and wellness leader. Laura’s promotion is a shining example of what hard work, skill and dedication can achieve. Laura's journey to the top has been an inspirational one, and her story is sure to motivate others to follow their dreams.     Way to go Laura!

Katia Pogarchenko, Spa Director at Hallandale Beach Club, Hallendale

Cheers to Katia, the new Spa Director at Hallandale Beach Club, and great addition to the Arch Amenities Group that brings experience in spa and management to the team. As a licensed Massage therapist and Spa Manager, she worked for Steiner Leisure for nearly 6 years and then moved onto various independent medical and aesthetics facilities.  Katia is results-driven and performance-focused, offering broad-based experience in business management, administrative operations, and customer service across multiple industries. Skilled at developing and implementing process improvements to increase efficiency and productivity, she is an excellent leader and team player. Welcome to AAG......Cheers Katia!

Nicole Nivers – Spa Director, Isla Bella Beach Resort, Marathon

Nicole has recently accepted her new position as Spa Director at the Isla Bella Beach Resort in the Florida Keys. A licensed Massage Therapist, Nicole was previously the Spa Director at Playa Largo Resort and Spa. As a Spa Director Nicole has led her team with an attitude of gratitude. She gained knowledge from working as both a massage therapist and an esthetician. This gave her insight into the behind-the-scenes aspects that are not typically taught. With this knowledge, she’s been able to make decisions regarding products, services, and retail sales that are more beneficial for her spa, her team and the environment resulting in a thriving business.     Bravo Nicole!

Eman Chambers – Retail Area Manager, HydraFacial

Eman has just accepted her new position as Retail Area Manager with HydraFacial. A licensed massage therapist and yoga instructor, Eman has over 20 years experience in the spa and wellness industry. She is passionate about wellness and providing the highest quality of care possible. She has excelled in increasing sales in stores, supporting all events, achieving sales goals, and educating staff. She has exemplary customer service skills, strong sales ability, and is committed to providing a positive experience for clients which is her key to success. With a strong sense of professionalism and a hands-on approach she will be a valued asset at HydraFacial.     Best wishes Eman!


 It's that time of year again!

The Annual FSA Carillon Miami Wellness Holiday Social is just around the corner on

Wednesday, November 16th

This exciting event will feature state-of-the-art treatments, education, and more from some of

the most innovative brands in the industry. Whether you're looking to relax and rejuvenate

or learn about the latest trends and get up- to-date Florida State laws and regulations,

this is an event you won't want to miss! Plus, with colleagues and friends in

attendance, it's sure to be a festive and memorable occasion for all.

So mark your calendars and join us at the Carillon for a holiday celebration like no other!

Register now and win “3+ME Spa Getaway”, a luxury spa experience for you + 3 friends!

Be sure not to miss Ian McIntosh,

Florida State Massage and FSMTA Board Member,

Featured guest speaker provides important updates on

Florida State laws and guidelines at 2pm.

Keep your spa compliant!

Get your sparkle on and hope to see you there!


"Voice-It" Spa Talk with Mitchell

Be Here Now (well sort of…)

Spa Directors have stressful jobs and may even have a tough time relaxing! Picture this: The Island of Sao Miguel in Portugal’s Azores. It is my first day on vacation and everything is amazing. Except, the “Vacation Me” is wrestling with the “Spa Director Me” about working on my vacation to do payroll. Here’s the discussion…Vacation Me, “We’re in the Azores and you are doing payroll?” Spa Director Me, “Snap out of it dude, 30 people depend on me for their livelihood and going on vacation is my choice, not theirs!” Vacation Me, “Oh, I see where this is going…well, let’s find a compromise.” Spa Director Me, “Cool, what if I don’t hide in a corner and instead work in a relaxing place?” Vacation Me, “That’s the attitude buddy, see your work time as part of your vacation time. Transcend your work responsibilities and include them in your vacation on your terms.”


So that’s what I did (see picture). However, something shifted in me after this self-discussion and I felt less resentful at work and even at home. When I heard someone’s kids playing in the hallway in my condo, my new response was “Awe, listen to how much fun they are having, and not calling security to come and lock them up.” It was like something shifted, and my resentment dissipated. I think I’m on to something and I’m gonna keep working on it. I’ll let you know how it’s going!


Always my pleasure,

Mitchell Berkman

Spa & Wellness Director

Porto Vita Club at Villa Grande

FSA Committee Chair - Events


Sharon Saint Amand, Director of Spa,


As Director of Spa at the new Tampa EDITION, Sharon is responsible for overseeing all aspects of the spa's operations. Sharon’s passion has always been in the wellness industry and has a broad background spanning from day spa, medical spa, hotel and resorts spa, providing her guests with exceptional experiences in a tranquil and inviting atmosphere.

Sharon grew up in London and discovered her passion for massage and wellness at a health farm that her mother took her to when she was just 14 years old. Since then, she discovered the value of balance and relaxation through massage therapy. Shortly after graduating from High School, Sharon became a licensed massage therapist and worked in London hotels part-time.

Sharon continued her education, majoring in construction. She graduated college with a bachelor's degree in Business Administration and went on to get her Master’s Degree in Construction Management. Starting her career in construction, Sharon worked on residential homes in London for 8 years before moving to New York City where she continued working on residential construction. 

Sharon's love of massage led her to a career in the spa industry. She has worked as a spa supervisor, manager, and director at various spas in New York City, Orlando, and Central Florida. Sharon's background in construction was helpful in overseeing spa renovations, and new construction, such as the Brownwood Hotel and Spa in the Villages FL, in which she was hired for pre-opening to completion from 2019-2021. In 2021, Sharon joined the team as Director of Spa for the pre-opening of Tampa Edition—a luxury 5-star hotel. Sharon's experience and expertise working pre-opening, ground up were instrumental in getting the spa up and running smoothly. She oversaw all aspects of the spa's operations to provide an exceptional experience for the guests at the hotel.

Sharon is honored to be part of the opening team at the Tampa EDITION. This is the first 5-star hotel in the Tampa Market. They have curated an exceptional spa experience to bring the very best of whole body wellness combined with a focus on esthetic innovation. She is excited to be a part of the EDITION team and looks forward to providing her guests with the highest level of service.

When Sharon is not busy sharing her love of wellness with her wonderful guests, she’s at home on her farm growing rare herbs and flowers with her family. Sharon is married and shares 4 children with her husband. They enjoy spending time outdoors, the beach, and exploring new restaurants. Sharon’s passion for all things natural extends to every aspect of her life. She is also a big fan of gin and tonic! 


Zoe's Empire was founded in 2019 by Sylvia Njeri , a Kenyan immigrant who calls Miami, Florida her home.

Sylvia is proud of her Kenyan heritage, designing clothing, jewelry, and handbags showcasing the bright colors and beautiful patterns her home country is known for. Zoe's Empire provides employment for skilled artisans in Kenya and India making traditional jewelry, while Sylvia uses Kenyan and contemporary textiles from Kenya and India to create unique, one-of-a-kind clothing from her Miami studio. All their products are sustainable and ethically crafted, with every last scrap of cloth, leather and beads being put to use creating high-quality handmade products you're sure to love for years to come. 

Zoe’s Story:

They support local Artisans in India and Kenya by creating employment.

They are a slow fashion brand meaning they don’t overwork their Artisans, releasing one product at a time.

They are a Resort Fashion brand and cater to private clubs, resorts and boutiques. 

Their clients like one of a kind and exclusive items.

Best Sellers


Their jewelry is hand crafted in their Miami lab. Their beads are carefully handpicked creating amazing statement pieces which will last a lifetime.

All their pieces have their own soul, making them a one of a kind wearable art.

Contact:  786-205-2599


Sleep tourism is the hot new trend—but is it hiding a bigger problem?

I have a recurring daydream of checking into a hotel with crisp, clean sheets. I pull the shades, crawl into bed, and sleep for ten blissful hours. Ahhh… heaven. I suspect I’m not alone in this fantasy either. Turns out, sleep tourism is the hot new vacation trend.

Sleep tourism has been growing in popularity for the past few years. Hotels and resorts around the world are offering an increasing number of sleep-focused stays—and guests are flocking to them. 

What is sleep tourism?

You know how sometimes after a vacation, you think: I could really use a vacation from my vacation? Well, sleep tourism is the opposite of that. Sleep tourism centers around travel accommodations that cater to guests’ need for sleep.

Read More

Psychedelic Drugs Global Market to Reach

$7.03 Billion by 2026


The increase in the cases of mental illnesses is expected to propel the growth of the psychedelic drug market going forward.

According to the Psychedelic Drugs Global Market Report 2022 from Research And Markets, the global psychedelic drugs market is expected to grow from $3.62 billion in 2021 to $4.19 billion in 2022 at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 15.6 percent. It is expected to reach $7.03 billion in 2026 at a CAGR of 14.2 percent.

The psychedelic drug market consists of psychedelic drugs that are used to treat depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, and help diagnose mental health issues—sold by various entities (organizations, sole traders, and partnerships). Psychedelic drugs, referred to as hallucinogens, are a group of substances that usually alter and enhance perception, thinking processes, energy levels, and promote mental experiences. These include chemicals such as Lysergic acid diethylamid (LSD) and plants such as peyote and psilocybin. They can be used to treat a variety of brain conditions. The increase in the cases of mental illnesses is expected to propel the growth of the psychedelic drug market going forward.

Read More


What Is Fast Fashion and Why Is It So Bad?

Fast fashion is a relatively new phenomenon in the industry that causes extensive damage to the planet, exploits workers, and harms animals. Here’s why it’s best to steer clear when you can.

A tragic reality check for fashion

Clothes shopping used to be an occasional event—something that happened a few times a year when the seasons changed or when we outgrew what we had. But about 20 years ago, something changed. Clothes became cheaper, trend cycles sped up, and shopping became a hobby. Enter fast fashion and the global chains that now dominate our high streets and online shopping. But what is fast fashion? Why is fast fashion so bad? And how exactly does it impact people, the planet, and animals?

Read More

The FSA calendar of events for 2023 will be released soon.

Stay tuned for more information!

Be sure to visit the
Florida Spa & Wellness Association website

We made website faster, easier to navigate, and more user friendly!
Be Connected . Be Involved . Grow your Business



We thank our FSA Vendor Partners and Collaborating Spa Organizations for their contribution to our Spa Guidelines, COVID-19 FSA Manual & Suggestions. We also express gratitude for our exceptional FSA Team for their hard work in putting together this manual to help our Florida Spa Community reopen their spa doors with safety and ambiance in mind. Check out these spa guidelines using the link below and you can download the manual using the link.


Pan-Seared Halibut with Lemony Zucchini Noodles

A simple, healthy Halibut recipe served over Lemony Zucchini Noodles with olive oil, garlic and Italian parsley, topped with sweet summer tomatoes.

A quick and easy low-carb meal!

Get Recipe
Let "THE SOURCE" be with you!
Enter "THE SOURCE", on the FSA website.

Education & Resources is our priority!
"The Source" was created to be your platform for resources and up to date information
to stay ahead of the curve of everything happening in the spa industry!

The Florida Spa Association
Phone: (561) 413-5843

Florida Spa Association network of spa professionals is unified by the desire to promote Florida as the finest destination for wellness and beauty experiences in the country.
Facebook  Twitter  Linkedin  
Visit our website