Rise and Thrive: S1 Ep2

Essentia Rise & Thrive Podcast Featuring Rich Macary of Delos

EPISODE 2: Breathe Well, Sleep Well & Stay Well with Rich Macary of DELOS

In our second episode of Essentia: Rise & Thrive we were so happy to host Richard Macary of Delos, the company behind the Health Safety Rating and Stay Well healthy travel, to discuss indoor wellness, the sleep environment, travel wellness and more. 

Rich brought with him a wealth of knowledge in regards to indoor air and what Delos is doing to bring the conversation to the forefront of the building industry, hotel industry and even malls. We discuss how this conversation around indoor air quality had shifted during the pandemic, and the barriers to entry that existed prior to the concerns of our immediate air quality. 

Essentia: Rise & Thrive Featuring Rich Macary of Delos

In our second episode of Essentia: Rise & Thrive we were so happy to host Richard Macary of Delos, the company behind the Health Safety Rating and Stay Well healthy travel, to discuss indoor wellness, the sleep environment, travel wellness and more. 

Rich brought with him a wealth of knowledge in regards to indoor air and what Delos is doing to bring the conversation to the forefront of the building industry, hotel industry and even malls. We discuss how this conversation around indoor air quality had shifted during the pandemic, and the barriers to entry that existed prior to the concerns of our immediate air quality. 

Rich's key value driving areas of the business, include intellectual property, property development, product development, licensing partnerships, collaborations, and joint ventures. Prior to joining Delos, Rich spent the past 15 years as a corporate consultant advisor and analyst to both institutional and high net worth investors. As well as a consultant advisor, investor and board member to several public and private early to mid stage companies operating in a diverse range of industries, including biotechnology, medical devices, software, new media, communication, retail, and consumer products. 

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You can also read the full transcript of the Essentia: Rise & Thrive podcast featuring Rich Macary here: 


Whitney: Hello, and welcome to rise and thrive. This is a series where we explore some of the biggest topics in wellness, specifically how they affect our sleep so that you can learn to wake up every day feeling rested, recharged, and ready for anything. I'm Whitney Lauritsen, the moderator. And I'm joined by Jack, the CEO and founder of Essentia natural memory foam and our special guest today.

Rich Macary who provides Delos with senior level business strategy. And a wealth of relevant experience, key value driving areas of the business, including intellectual property, property development, product development, licensing partnerships, collaborations, and joint ventures. Just to name a few. And prior to joining Delos, he spent the past 15 years as a corporate consultant advisor and analyst, both institutional and high net worth investors.

As well as a consultant advisor, investor and board member to several public and private early to mid stage companies operating in a diverse range of industries, including biotechnology, medical devices, software, new media, communication, retail, and consumer products. Wow, rich, you have a wealth of experience and knowledge, and we are really excited to have you here to talk about indoor air concerns, because that plays a big role in our sleep.

We encourage the listener to visit myessentia.com/podcast. To get more information about this recording our guests and future live clubhouse sessions that we're doing. If you want to join us, we have a lot of amazing people coming up. In fact, Jack, will you share what's coming up in our next clubhouse session as a little teaser.

Jack: Sure, absolutely. Next week we have Brian Clement, he's the director of Socrates health Institute. And basically he's all about vegan and organic and his big thing is how not organic, not all organic products are created equal.

And so he'll, he'll be, he'll be a great guest for us next week. We have a great long standing relationship. And so it'll be exciting. Rich here awesome to have rich rich is, is, is, is one of the smartest people I know. So he has a wealth of knowledge and his real claim to fame is introducing Delos to essentia.

So that's, that's, that's pretty awesome. He's that? He's, he's one of the guys that found us and, and, and made that connection. So obviously we've had a lot of fun. We'd go, we go back quite a few years and it's going to be a lighter type of meeting because we have a great personal relationship as well.

Whitney: So, well, that's what makes the best. 

Rich: Yes. And the only reason I'm here is because he told me I was going to be on with Dr. Hyman. And so I thought I was going to be part of a panel and all of a sudden, it's just me with you guys. So it's all good. All good.

Jack: I thought you were bringing J-Lo and lady Gaga. So I guess we both didn't show up with our baggage.

Whitney: Well, for those that don't know what Jack is referring to rich, can you tell the audience about your work beyond what I introduced you as?

Rich: Oh, sure. I mean, Delos as some of, you know, or don't know, is focused on health and wellness in the built environment. The companies not only working with corporations hotel companies, creating healthier environments but going back almost from the beginning of the company, we helped to create the well building standard which is very similar to lead which is about sustainability in the environment.

Well, building standard is really focused on human health and human sustainability. And that is and was created by the international well building Institute. And, and I believe now it covers about somewhere, about 1.5 billion square feet of buildings are now well certified. And in relation to what's been happening from a pandemic standpoint, the international well building Institute also launched the well health safety rating.

And you know, you may have seen that commercial from time to time on, on television, but that is about demonstrating that a building is meeting criteria to be safe as it relates to health and wellbeing, particularly around the fact that we have this viral threat. And that's being adopted by some of the biggest corporations, real estate developers in the world.

So it's been a, a very dynamic time for the company and for the international well building Institute as well. We go back we go back to 2012. I think rich is when we first met something around there. It may maybe, maybe sooner than that. But you know I think I brought in a lot of wealth and knowledge and sleep, but I learned so much from Dallas over the year and keep learning from all the research you guys have done over the year.

So it's been pretty, pretty incredible. And we we've had fun along the way learning and, and, and exploring different things. And so it's been pretty awesome, but you know, we're, we have a little bit of a behind the scenes guy here. You're not in the PR, you're not the public relations. But I knew your personally, so I said, you're going to come on board, we'll have a conversation.

And I'm sure there's lots of lots of stuff we can share. I know you get into. Many other fields you're, you're, you're in the biotech. So obviously people can ask you all kinds of questions. Cause you've been in, in, in so many different categories when it comes to a wellness and a, and prevention and disease.

Jack: So, you know, our focus is sleep, but any questions are open. Right. And, and I appreciate you coming on. I also see, I also see we have someone else from the LLC on the crowd there. I see Chris is there, so we're going to get them up here as well. Chris Chris handles the, the, the is part of the stay well hospitality section.

So at one point we'll have to embarrass him with a little spotlight as well. 

Whitney: Well, I know that's one of the topics that you wanted to dive into today, Jack. So should we start there or should we start at some of the basics about the sleep environ? 

Jack: I guess, yeah, let's go into the basic sleep environment and we can get Chris up here and he'll, he'll, he'll talk about the travel one as well, so we can get them get him on stage with us as well.

Whitney: Fantastic. Well, in terms of sleep environment, a lot of people are thinking about their comfort, right? But there's so much more that goes into it from the light, the sound and air quality as we're focused on today. And then mattress of course were Essentia, comes into play. When people are thinking about like how to set up that environment, we covered this a bit with Dr.

Hyman, but we really only scratched the surface on the air quality side. So I'd love to hear more from you rich on what you know, and anything else that you're knowledgeable about when it comes to setting up the best place for you to sleep? 

Rich: Sure. I mean, just, you know, from the top and one of the things that got me engaged.

With close in the beginning was the science related to sleep and in particular related to circadian rhythm. So I found it somewhat unbelievable at first, and this is going back eight or nine years that lighting could have this biological effect on your body. It, it seemed not likely that something so simple could have a profound impact and a drug or medical device like impact on the body.

And so that, that, that was the first thing that really hooked me. I started to think, well, if we could change in effect lighting inside of the space, How you receive lighting from the morning, all the way through the time you go to sleep, that we could probably have an impact on your sleep. Cause we could have an impact on your circadian rhythm.

And so that was sort of the opening of understanding that aspect. But when you start to understand circadian rhythm, and again, this is the great part about Delos. It's always straddling on one side, the science and medical side of this and understanding that, and then looking at it through how do you translate that into the real world?

What are the technologies or the products or the things, or, or the way those things have to be operated in order to create that effect. So you start to learn circadian rhythm. Isn't just about lighting. It's about temperature. It's about timing of when you eat food, it's about timing of when you exercise.

It it's deeper than that. They call those things like gamers. When we started to research all this and get deeper into it as we always do, we started to get experts in the first place we went was the division of sleep medicine at Harvard, and started to tap into experts there to understand that part of it.

And over time, we, we just started to look at all aspects of how the environment around you and also what you do individually can, can affect sleep. You know, air quality is one of those factors. I think it's more of a factor around general health, as much as it might be around sleep itself. We're concerned about VOC in the air, which in some cases, mattresses can be a source of we're concerned about particulate matter in the air.

Ultra-fine particles up the PM 2.5 and PM. And you know, we're concerned about CO2 or other things that ultimately can have an impact on performance or could be a factor or risk factor toward disease, et cetera. But a whole host of things that we, that we look at related to sleep and everything that we've been doing, which I can address is around trying to control those factors and optimize those factors to create better sleep.

Whitney: That's incredible. And Jack, I'd love to know from you in terms of the VOC, which he brought up in mattresses, can you speak on that a bit, Jack, to give some context to what Essentia does to keep people feeling good while they're sleeping, but also with the air quality? 

Jack: Well, for us air quality was at, at, at the base of, of how we how and why I found it Essentia was ultimately to create a clean engine.

Back in the day, w w what triggered this was to create a clean, clean environment for people who are suffering from cancer, who were, who, who became basically sensitized to chemicals and who were in a weakened state during chemo, or other types of of of treatments. That's when I kind of realized that the air quality really had an impact when you only notice it on the week.

And so what we did is really focused on developing organic formulas to creating memory foam. We're the only ones that have ever developed that. And still today are the only ones that have that, you know, we realized that memory foam was the proper surface, physically pressure, relieving service posture, supporting surface.

However, it had enormous amounts of offgassing. And that was our number one on our hit list through the year. Where, you know, even learning from Dayla understanding that part of the sleep environment was not just the the, the, the clean air and our air quality. But so many things when it came to lighting, sounds so much in our, in our in, in our atmosphere.

But also working with pro athletes, working pro athletes, also it really make us realize so much more we've had pro athletes that were basically had the sleep readers on and they were there. They were able to track that with less toxins in the air, less VOC is going around in the air that were being made.

That they had better sleep, better deep sleep cycles, whereas it, when they were exposed to toxins, those were stimulating their nervous system and keeping them awake. So we learned so much, you know, back in 2009 is when we started working with athletes and we learned a lot from them because whereas the, what we learned so much to the people who are going through ailments we seem to learn a lot more with athletes because they were able to communicate it to us.

They were able to tell us what was working, what was, what, what wasn't working and how they felt. And they're very in tune with their bodies because they're, they rely on them for, for their day-to-day performance. So that's when, you know, for, for us, we were simply a natural product in 2005, 2006, when I developed the material.

But by 2009, we were really into sleep performance, focused on all aspects that, that, that that can impact. And in 2006, Well, we started working with Delos that's when we really start to tell people about their environment, including lighting and their circadian rhythm and, and everything that came along with it.

And I think I've been a bigger asset to so many of these individuals. That's a struggle with sleep because of the complete package and knowledge that I've gained from so many people. 

Whitney: That's incredible. And I have a follow-up question before I get to that. I just want to welcome anyone. Who's joined us in clubhouse today, and we'll have a chance for you to ask questions.

So it's all fair game. You can ask Jack. You can ask rich... me if it pertains, any of us are here to support you with getting really great sleep, but also better understand. Air quality, which is something that I feel like I've only skimmed the surface on. So it's amazing to be able to get deep into this. And rich, I'm curious with all the organic mattresses out there, why was Essensia the one that you chose for your work with, with Dallas and the well living lab and everything else that you've been working on?

Rich: Yeah. And when Jack says 2012, was it really that long ago? 

Jack: I can't think so. I think you better check that date. 

Rich: Yeah. W when, when we, when we set out to, to understand this, we, you know, at first it seemed like it might be a futile effort to try to figure this out. And it's because we're science driven.

And when we went to go to the science and look for studies that might tell us more about what you'd want in the match. It was very thin. And the research that was out there was actually sponsored by major mattress companies, which by definition is not independent research. So we had to do a different kind of research, which was, we started to just try to talk to experts whether we're spinal experts, chiropractors, sleep practitioners doctors of sleep medicine.

And we started to put together our own internal criteria around what kind of mattress would we want to get behind that could address everything that we were able to learn from our own research. That would matter. And create our own lists. And then we just started the thoughtfully because at the time I had a great team of people who just methodically, went out there and reached out to all these companies around the world, asked and requested for information, set up phone calls, listened to their pitch, tried to pull away the marketing from the actual, tangible information that we wanted, which was difficult.

And, you know, one of the things we ran into very, very quickly was when you started to ask some of the companies, especially the memory foam companies for, can you give us a composition of your mattress? You know, the conversation would, would not move forward. They wouldn't share with us what was in the mattress and, and some very big companies with a B in terms of sales.

And that was really disturbing. Off-putting that, you know, we don't even know what's in there. Then we started to look and find that there was actually lawsuits trying to find out what's in these mattresses, concerned about the chemicals. And, and so We already know a lot about VOC off gassing, sick building syndrome.

You know, where you have building materials that can off gas, things like formaldehyde, and that can really make people ill. I mean, we have a lot of even recent examples of that over the past few years. So we knew that was important. That was one of our, our initial criteria was let's try to stay away from chemicals, whether they're, you know, petrochemicals in, in these types of mattresses, whether they're glues in spring mattresses or whether they're fire retardants, which is another big area, that's still an ongoing issue related to chemical outgassing.

But once we got beyond that, we, we started to look at things like pressure relief, the ability for your body to recover when you're laying on a mattress for eight hours spinal alignment, spinal cord, How important that is at night, that if you are, you know eventually getting into a deep state of sleep and your body is locked in this position for an hour and a half or two hours, and it's a bad position that has implications to your, to your spine health.

Some of these mattresses people sink into and they can't really move around and having no movement all night is not necessarily a great thing for your spine when it's offloaded in this position when you're laying down. So we were just trying to figure out, so, you know, what would drive us toward a particular mattress?

We started to favor the idea of memory foam, not because of the chemicals, but because of, you know, this, this ability to this ability to not only help with spinal alignment and, and pressure relief. But we, you know, we also saw the ability to help on that spinal aspect together with the fact that it would perform for a longer period of time that, that some of these spring mattresses could start to degrade in performance, meaning the Springs start to settle in and you start to get these indentations well before the useful life, which meant that you're going to have the sagging, which would affect spinal alignment.

So it drove us toward this category. And I know I'm giving you a long approach to why we picked this mattress and Jack, Jack Jack knows this background story. But we finally found Essentia and it just started to check all the boxes. We went into their store and we started to look at it and investigate more.

And eventually we just said, this is in our opinion, the best mattress in the market when it comes to all the criteria that we believe were important. And what was great about that was many years later, I don't know how many years later, several years later consumer reports finally picked up one of Jack's mattress.

And reviewed it. And in our opinion, to this day, nobody does a more thorough evaluation of mattress as a mattress technology. That consumer reports, which is also truly independent. They're not a blog with a big following, trying to sell mattresses. They are truly independent and they pick Jack's mattress as number one.

And despite companies with hundreds of millions of more revenue, sorry, Jack, you should be there, but you're not yet. They have not displaced him. He's still five years running as, or more the number one mattress ranked and reviewed. So we, we believe that was a great validation of the research that we did.

And to this day we still think the things that we valued in that mattress consumer reports still doesn't evaluate like off gassing and would probably even lift Jack's mattress higher above his competitors if they did. So that's how we got there. 

Whitney: Well, that's an incredible backstory there and okay. Really a wonderful honor and, and an important point too, because certainly when you research mattresses, it does feel like a lot of the information out there is driven by the financial elements and the benefits of someone bought, you know, whether it's a blogger, who's making a commission off of you buying it from them or the company, of course.

And, and it's also like really sad to hear that so many companies out there are not as transparent. And I'm just really glad that you covered that so that people can be more mindful about the information that they're getting. And that leads me to something else, which is about how Dallas has pivoted into based on the response of COVID with the health safety rating.

Can you talk more about what that is and what you're doing right now to help people understand air quality and their overall health. 

Rich: Sure. Sure. And you know, the, the international well building Institute, which we helped to create, it was based initially on the research that we were doing. It's its own independent organization.

That's a standards organization that created the well building standard. Again, that's covering, you know, over one, I think 1.6 billion square feet, 80 countries thousands of projects that are meeting all of these criteria around lighting around air quality, et cetera, how they operate the buildings. So when the pandemic came along, a lot of the things that you'd want to do to have a safer space, some of those were already part of the well building standard.

We were already ahead of the game were buildings that were already utilizing and were already certified by the well standard. We're already ahead in that, but the quickly I think Dr. Richard Carmona, former surgeon. Cast or created a task force that was put together by the idea of BI.

It ended up growing to about 600 practitioners from, you know, the medical building sciences, you know, all the way through and out of that task force came a new set of recommendations beyond what we had in the well building standard. And that could help in creating both a motivation and a badge to say we're doing all these things that are all best practices around trying to keep people in the building safe and roll that out in incredible speed.

I give them a ton of credit for that. Ended up doing an awareness campaign. The consumers, the people that are coming in that building can know that this is a safer space when they see that well health, safety seal. And that's just been a huge success, you know, major companies, real estate developers, like Brookfield T-Mobile JP Morgan, Yankee stadium.

I can't keep up, keep up with all the different groups and entities that have embraced it. But it is giving a lot of insurance assurance that people going into those buildings that they're doing all the right things from procedure and policy to what they're doing from an air quality standpoint, from a cleaning standpoint it's a really big deal on the daily.

Totally independent from what the has been doing with the warehouse safety rating. You know, we've been really focused on a lot of people have been leaning on us in how they think about air quality in their spaces. This has already been part of our core DNA. It's what we've been researching for a long time.

So we've been helping to bring air solutions to the marketplace in identifying key vendors and partners and products that we've come to trust and understand the same way that we came to trust and understand Jack's mattresses as being better than the competitors. We did that with air and that research dates back to our, our our focus on ultra fine particles and how to get those out of the air, because those are the most dangerous particles that exist.

They go right into the bloodstream and, and are widely considered what you really want. And a lot of air purifiers don't do as good of a job taking those ultra finds out of the. And when you think about what a virus is and the size of a virus you're in that ultra fine particle category. So it was sort of a perfect segue for us to take the technology and products that we were already looking at as being the high end of where you wanted to be, to create a better air environment with inside of the building and apply that to this pandemic and to creating a healthier environment, a safer environment where we have a truly airborne virus, like nothing that we've seen in a very long time.

And with Delta, that, that, that unfortunately, that that answer has gone higher in terms of the potential of, of, of getting this virus to the air. So it's a big pivot for us on both fronts for the idle BI. In creating the wealth safety rating, having such a big impact so quickly. And for Delos the pivot from all the things we were doing, more holistic wellness to really focus in on the things that people were demanding and asking for, whether they're in schools, senior living facilities, dorms, you know, all the way through corporate spaces.

We've been really focused on air purification. 

Jack: No, it's really in your wheelhouse as well. I remember going back a few years when I had all the data and the reports and the independent studies on VOC on our product. And then you asked me what about allergens and allergens was something that we weren't focused on as a mattress company.

And you know, I, I said, no, it shouldn't be any allergens are proteins through our processing are eliminated. And I remember you saying, ah, that's not good enough, Jack. You, you said that over to who was the doctor? Robert Hamilton and had him evaluate, we, you guys had a tested. Dust mites had tested for proteins in latex.

And we still, we still are proud of those results today, but that's exactly what, what you guys did. You, you, you didn't accept a sales pitch. W w 

Rich: Whitney, I want you to know, I literally walked in one of his studios and pulled out a knife and hacked off a piece of the mattress, sent it to a lab. We didn't, we didn't, we didn't go that far, but we did.

We sent it to a lab and then we had the top expert from John Hopkins do an evaluation to get us comfortable, just found, showing you the level that we go to on the science to get it right. 

Whitney: Well, that's incredible. And you know, it also goes to show how much people aren't paying attention to these things, you know, I guess if there's a a silver lining to COVID and this whole pandemic it's that it's raised people's awareness about error, you know, like who would have thought that you'd need to stand six feet apart and wear a mask inside.

And all of these things that I personally was not doing and other people just weren't quite as aware. And it also shows that we often need guidance from doctors and other specialists out there to guide us towards what's best for us. You know, we're not for all the signs about needing to wear a mask, to go in certain places, most people wouldn't and then they get sick and then, you know, it'd be come a huge issue.

And so it's so important that somebody is doing something like slicing the mattress off and sending it in for testing, because then you're raising the whole awareness for the company and thus all the consumers and guiding them through all of this. So I think. An incredible element of all of this.

And I just brought Chris up to the stage as requested, because I want to talk about the stay well program and it heads up to anyone who's listening live on clubhouse after Chris and, and the three of us discuss the stay well program. I'd love to open it up to anyone in the audience to ask a question.

So if you would like to ask anything about air quality air purification and just overall environmental indoor environment wellbeing, please raise your hand, come on up. Any question, even, even something that sounds like a beginner level, that would actually be great too, because we want to make sure that everyone here leaves feeling very informed.

And Chris, thanks so much for coming up. I want to ask more about the stay well program. So either when rich and or Chris, would you share a little bit more about that? 

Rich: Oh, I'm going to defer to Chris. Now that he's here. 

Chris: I know Kate came in to listen to you too, and thanks so much for having me.

This is, this has been great to hear and just like love, love, reiterating the message as well. I think as, as a consumer, right Jack, you know, I have a mattress here at my house but also someone who's stayed a ton in stable rooms really boils down to just educating the consumer. And you guys have talked a lot about that.

There's right. I don't think that the, the average person thinks about the VOC, the chemicals that are in their mattress. And so as kind of background stay well, is the hospitality arm of daily dose. So rich was Richard, correct me if I'm wrong, but you were very instrumental in kind of the creation of it back in 20 12, 20 13.

Andrew split as well, back in 2012. We are the stable program is, is currently in 


over 3000 rooms. We worked with Jack actually over the pandemic to install over 1500 rooms throughout Las Vegas and the MDMR portfolio. So whether you go to aria or Bellagio or of a Dora Delano there are stable rooms at each of those properties now.

So really, you know, we've talked a little bit about air, we've talked a little bit about light water, but bringing all of those elements into a hotel environment, Whitney, 

Whitney: that's incredible. And I'm curious, like why are these rooms such a success, especially in properties like Vegas, which I recently learned that and correct me if this is wrong or maybe outdated, but I heard that to combat the smell of smoke, which, you know, all those cigarette smokers in the hotels, especially in.

They'll spray the air with, with actually a VOC chemical to mask the smell. And I don't know if that's still true, but I thought, wow. I mean, how horrific you're walking in here thinking, oh, this, it doesn't smell so bad, but maybe that's because they're trying to prevent it from appearing that way, but actually making it worse for your health.

So I'm curious with all of the work that you're doing to improve hotels such as those in Vegas how is that evolving and changing and the whole hotel industry hope. 

Chris: Yeah, that's a great question. And right. You walk into some of these hotels and they smell, they smell great, quite frankly. Whether or not that's in order to cover up the smell or, but, but rich rich probably knows a lot more about this than I do, but every, every cent is a VOC.

So those are all really polluting. And right. If you walk into a casino for you expect to smell smoke, you expect re that kind of, kind of dark feel. The one thing that I would say that we get a lot of consumer feedback on is you, you leave, you get on the elevator from the casino for you get up to your hotel room and the floor itself, every single stable room has an air purifier in it.

And that's actually, you know, when everyone's opening their doors and going in and out, that's actually purifying the air on the whole floor. And so that is one of the things that we receive a ton of very positive feedback on along with the mattresses. Oh, I slept so well. And while it has a lot to do with the Essentia mattresses, it also has a lot to do with areas as Jack and rich had been talking about.

Jack: I got attest to that. As soon as you get on a stairwell floor, you can tell the area. I mean, it it's immediate, it's immediate transition from casino through stay well. 

Whitney: Wow. And another factor too is cleaning products, right? So, I mean, this is something I'm personally very sensitive to. I always use natural cleaning products at home, but let's say a housekeeper in a hotel room is cleaning, which is nice for making sure that it's good for other elements of, of my health, I suppose.

But then I wonder, is it like making it worse? Is it worse for my health or is it better with the products that they're the harsh chemicals that they're using? And so I'm curious, is that part of your regimen or is it just that the air purifier is helping reduce the chemicals that are in the air from cleaning to yeah.

Chris: Well, by and large, it's actually interesting. Most hotel companies are moving away from those harsh chemicals, right? At one point a few years ago. The number one Google term for Marriott was chemical free. So, so really when we think about the cleaning products that are being used in hotels today, they've really, they've really changed pretty significantly in the past few years.

We do make recommendations, but on the actual cleaning product, but beyond the air purification, we also use UVC lighting. So again, Rich's probably more of an expert on that front than I do. I am, but largely you see with our hotel partners, they've, they've instituted as a result of COVID a variety of different really cleaning protocols.

And so COVID has really forced the hand here and keeping rooms clean, but also doing it in a, in a healthy way. 

Rich: Yeah. And, and, and I should say, stay well is a program. So in order to have a stay well room in a hotel, regardless of brand, you have to meet all of our criteria and that there is a cleaning protocol.

The products that you use, the things that you do to prep that room, the things that are in that room, like an Essentia mattress, like the air purifier, water purification, aroma therapy, we're connecting it into mindfulness. We have guided meditation in the room. We have, you know Dawn simulation and energizing light.

We have the menu connected to room service. So there's healthy options, even down to the mini bar. And you know, so this is as much, it can be an experience for somebody that's living. A healthy lifestyle is traveling or it could be somebody that has allergies or other issues and feels like this is going to be a better room.

Or people who just value the fact that they're going to be traveling and not sleeping in the room. And they want to sleep in a clean, safe environment that is about trying to give them the best night's sleep possible. So, you know, the motivations for people that want this room, whether they're a business traveler, they're a you know, family or they're a, you know, a luxury traveler all the way to just somebody that is taking a vacation.

These rooms can be an experience or a person can want this room for a specific aspect of the room, but that's why they're successful. And they're going to expand post pandemic, given everything that we've all just learned about indoor spaces, air, quality, cleanliness, sleep, you know, your immune system, you know, it all sort of comes together.

So I'm really bullish about where stairwells going to go post pandemic. And, and to say that it's not, obviously, there's a lot of hotel rooms outside of Vegas with Marriott, with Wyndham, with four seasons. You know, we're, we're probably at the beginning of where it's. 

Whitney: Wow. I mean, that's truly remarkable because these are things that I've learned to think about over time, you know, and certainly trying to pay more attention to my home, but that, that vulnerability you can feel when you're traveling.

And you're not sure if it's going to be comfortable. Is it going to be safe? Is it, is it going to be good for your health or, you know, all of these factors, the more you start to learn about health and wellness these become increasingly important and I'm just blown away by everything that you're doing.

I want to give an opportunity for anyone listening live on clubhouse to ask questions. So I know we have Jason Robella in the audience. I'm not sure if he has a question prepared, but, but Jay's video might maybe your, your ears perked up when he was talking about the meditation side of it, which I think is really amazing.

So if you feel like coming up to ask anything. Or just share more of your experiences. Really. We want to open this up to a conversation, so don't be shy if you're here, anyone in the audience. Otherwise I have a few more questions and I'm sure Jack does too, but I'll pause for a moment to see if anyone wants to raise their hand today.

Well, sometimes people just want to listen, but Jason rebel is going to come out. So this is great. Jason, we'd love to hear from you. 

Jason Wrobel: Hey friends, always good to be here with you, Jack and Whitney. Great to meet you. Rich and Chris. So I started using several different brands of air filters in my home.

I have a, an 1100 1100 square foot home and I have two filters, but you know, I always think about the trustability of the filters I bought, because it seems like every air filter company. Talks about research and pathogens and viral load and, and, you know, microbial size and the long answer. The long question rather is, are there specific brands that you guys have vetted or tested or that you trust their research more than another?

Because I'm wondering if I can upgrade my air filter situation and I'm wondering which ones you highly recommend. 

Rich: Okay. So, you know, obviously when it comes to how companies are marketing and what they're saying, I, you know, I think everybody has the right. If they're using sort of a HEPA filter to say it's HEPA and, and make the claims related to the filter.

There's a lot of other technologies out there. There's a lot of different ways of, of cleaning the air. We're not going to get too deeply into all of that because it's sort of a technological discussion around the different ways that you can clean the air. But when it comes to a straight up filter a media filter, Our preference was.

And again, I mentioned it during the, the, the talk that I was going to be for is that we looked at ultra-fine particles as being a really, really important part of what you want to remove from an indoor space to make it healthier together with and PM 2.5 larger particles. And so the, the technology that we got behind and it's co-branded with us, it's a Douglas air purification.

You see it on our website uses a technology that actually combines aspects of a filter with an electrical charge that, you know, really traps, literally everything that comes in to that air purifier. The other part of it that's super important that is left out by a lot of these companies who are creating these devices is full system efficiency, single pass efficiency.

You could have the great filter, but if the way you put that into your system, Ultimately doesn't have all that air filter through it. If it's 60, 70, 80% efficient, because air is escaping around it and not going through the filter, you're defeating the purpose and that's not good for ultra fine particles or even PM 2.5.

It's worse. If, if what you're trying to do is take a virus out of the air and lower the potential that, that somebody could become ill from it and, and be infected. And, you know, as a, as a guy that has a other part of my life for 15 years in biotech and in infectious disease specifically there's definitely a lot of evidence that getting sick from this virus that it's an airborne aerosol based virus.

It's about the amount of particles that are building up in the air and that ventilation is not taking away, whether that's an open window or that's the ventilation rates circulating within your home or within your office. And secondarily is the filtration media, whether that's in your HVAC system or an immobile air purification system that you brought in that it's actually capturing, what's coming in and taking it out of the air, and then it's lowering the probability that you could become ill from it.

So we have the one that we think is the best we partnered with. We've been deploying that into schools, into senior living facilities, with tremendous amount of confidence that what goes in, doesn't come out. And that it's a highly, highly effective approach. It's not saying that, you know, using HEPA filtration and other strategies, aren't good.

They are our approach. And that's like me saying every other mattress other than Jack's is terrible and you're not going to have a good night's sleep. He probably wants to say that, but, you know, we wouldn't look at that as being true. We just look at all the aspects of his mattress. The most optimal and what you want.

And that's what we have in the air purifier that we're getting behind. But it is hard to, to, to be able to evaluate because all, even the people that are out there wired magazine or all these guys, they're not completely scientific about how they're going about evaluating these air purifiers to, if you go look at everybody's top 10 lists, they're all different companies.

So it's really a minefield for the consumer to try to figure out what the best is. We just got behind one that we know works and we're getting it out there to the clients and those who are coming to us, asking for our opinion and looking for a solution. Incredible. Jason, does that answer your question?

Jason Wrobel: Yeah. I'm actually on the website right now, looking at the ultra-fine multi-stage air purifier and going, huh? Yeah, I think I want to pull the trigger on this. It looks awesome. Awesome, Jason. 

Jack: I know this all kinds of different air purifiers. I have recently been contacted by someone who's converting air and do some in releasing ozone in the air.

Have you guys ever done any, any studies looking at that as ozone, as a, as an air purifier, 

Rich: Jack, I'm going to probably have to kick you off a clubhouse right now that you even brought that up, but no, that's terrible. You do not zone at all. That's right up there with bad VOC and I, and I kind of answered the guy.

You do realize we sell organic products here, so yeah, yeah, yeah. We did. We did a lot of work looking at things like bi-polar ionization hydrogen peroxide being put into the air. And there's just, there's either a lot of unknowns either on that they actually do or perform to lower the, the, the potential viral risks.

But there's also unknowns about whether or not they're safe. And the good thing about the technology we're we're using is what goes in, doesn't come out, but it's not sending something out into the air for you to breathe in and hope that whatever it is doing to take out a pathogen, isn't doing something inside of your lungs or in your body.

And there's just been, there's not been enough research to understand that stuff safe. So I'm, I'm weary and skeptical as are a lot of people, I think, in the air quality industry and in a lot of the solutions. And unfortunately many people, even schools have been embracing. And I don't think it was wise or is wise.

Whitney: We have Stephanie up on stage next. Stephanie, we'd love to hear a question or a topic. Suggestion. 

Stefanie: Yeah. Hi everyone. So it's been kind of awesome listening to the backstory of idealists and. You know, vetted everything, put everything together and especially speaking, I think now the conversation is so much interesting pandemic wise talking about indoor air quality, but I think prior to pandemic, you guys put together this awesome program that really benefits so many people, whether it be, you know, from a business standpoint and well rooms, I guess being that I'm in marketing, I was just a little bit more curious when you have such I kind of niche concept, what was the struggles of bringing that to kind of some of these bigger corporations and getting their buy-in because obviously, you know, you have something that's going to help somebody that's going to improve their lives.

But then kind of bringing that to a more general audience can be a little bit difficult. So even when you think about Vegas, like the fact that there's so many hotels in Las Vegas, which is so well known as a party atmosphere with Staywell rooms, I think that's just a little bit interesting to me in terms of how the program was received or the struggles you guys had to go through to get that program received.

Rich: Yeah, no, that's, that's a great question. And I, I was pretty much there from about the beginning and, you know, the thing I could say about it is what was interesting is, you know, we didn't invent the science right? When we went to go do this, there were already people out there who were doing the work to understand circadian, rhythm and lighting and its impact.

The people were already out there understanding air quality, water, quality, what you needed to do. But none of that was put together in a way that could either translate to a home builder or a general contractor or a major construction, architectural firm engineering firm, to be able to translate that into what they could actually do in a building.

And so we kind of took that on not only trying to take all that science and put it together, But then trying to translate it into the technologies, the products, the materials, and the protocols and processes you needed to actually create healthier spaces. This was a monster that we were getting involved in in the beginning.

And, you know, fortunately we had deep pocketed investors that allowed us to indulge in sort of a three-year R and D project to make this happen and work with folks like the Cleveland clinic and Mayo clinic, but also working with architects, engineers, designers to, to create this. But when we came out the other side, we had a tremendous amount of confidence in what we had done and where we could take it.

And we, we split in that point, we took the research and said, this is too important. This is too big to sit back and say, you know, let's just hold onto it and go to related and say, we're gonna work with you to develop the only healthy buildings in every city and try to make a lot of money and charge more.

That didn't seem right. It didn't make sense. And that's when we started to look at the lead framework and, and what was being done to create environmentally sound and sustainable buildings. And we thought we need to do the same thing. So we lifted up all of our research and open source that gave it away, created the international well building Institute to allow this to become a movement.

We gave it to everybody else. And, you know, lead was brought together by a whole bunch of people, all who were trying to design and influence the industry to be more sustainable. There were people doing that, but nobody had done it the way we had done it. So we kind of put it on our back, handed it to the industry and kind of made it their own.

And that's what the WPI has become. It's why it's becoming so successful on the daily. You know, I'll give the credit to Paul. Our CEO is incredibly charismatic when you hear him talk about human capital and human sustainability and how, you know, we need to be thinking as much about the people in the buildings than the people than the buildings themselves.

He was captivating and, you know, he was able to help us raise capital. He was help able to help us convince, you know, folks in Vegas to create healthy hotel rooms and to get, you know, the first corporations or groups like CVRE to convert their headquarters. It was a really tough, long effort and to watch it come full circle, we were in the acceleration phase of this wellness movement around spaces and people before the pandemic.

But man, when it hit the phones rang off the hook and all we could hear was for all those that weren't getting them. You guys were right. You guys were right. This was important. Spaces are important. And you know, one of the major mitigation strategies that you can have around what's happened in the pandemic beyond wearing a mask is ventilation cleaning protocols, all the things that we're already to a degree, part of the well building standard.

So it's been great validation, I believe in hope. As offices opened back up and hotels and get populated again, and we get back to normal that I don't think people are going to forget about air quality and all the aspects of health and wellbeing, including in their own homes that they got locked into for months on end and, and, and started thinking about their own mindfulness and their, their immune system.

And I just don't think it's going to go away. I think this movement's going to accelerate from here and you know, we're, we're, we, we had heavy lifting eight years ago. I think it's, I think it's got, you know, escape velocity in 2022 and beyond. 

Chris: Yeah. And I just want to add one thing from, from a hospitality perspective, that speaks to a lot of what rich was just saying.

Right? We were, Dallas was very much on the cutting edge and in the story, you know, there, there were definitely people before the pandemic who were looking for wellness centric, hotel rooms, but they were the educated people, right. They were the people who were actively seeking out those rooms. The story has really become one from, from an industry perspective is bringing back occupancy.

So making people feel comfortable returning to those hotels. And quite frankly, now we're all educated. Now what Dallas doesn't have to do the education of why air purification is important, right? The, the masses understand that as a result of what we've got, right. And so it's really just turned into a consumer confidence.

Really just boosting that. And I think that's really, you know, from a stable perspective rings true, but also is from a well health, safety rating is, you know, it's just bringing back that confidence with people coming into into buildings again. 

Whitney: And that's incredible. I'm so grateful for all the work that you've been doing and the time that you spent discussing it today, it's so enlightening and inspiring and it makes me want to go back to a hotel and, you know, it's to Stephanie's point, I was thinking how actually, if you're partying in Vegas, you probably do really care about your sleep because you're probably only getting a few hours of it. So you want to make sure you're on a good mattress. And sleeping the best you can, so you can get up the next day and party all over again. So 

Rich: Whitney, people don't party in Vegas, nobody parties. They're there for conferences. They're there for family or you know, things now it's I'm ready to go back and play a little blackjack. I could, I could use that. 

Whitney: Well, I'm glad you brought up conferences though, because that's always a huge concern for me in terms of air quality. When you're around all these strangers in a one room, it can be really concerning. And so you want at least your hotel room to feel like it's in great condition and taking good care of you.

So I want to say one last time. If anyone in the audience has any questions and then if not, I'll pass it back to Jack to see if you have one final question before we wrap up. All right, Jack, it's up to you. 

Jack: Jesus. The pressure's on to ask a good question, but I think we covered so many things. You know, nothing really coming to mind. I mean, I just wanted to have a great conversation with rich. Rich was concerned that what are we going to talk about? But I mean, you're great. You're, you're you're you, you, you, you don't even know how much depth of knowledge you have. It just loses out of you. 

Rich: I thought he was going to ask me about the best sushi restaurant in Manhattan. I thought maybe that would be 

Jack: rich is the man rich is the man. He knows all the best sushi spots. So thanks for that though.

Rich: I'm sorry. You got to hold that when you come, I'll bring you, but until then, I'm going to have to hold it back. 

Whitney: Well, as long as they have some plant-based options, count me in. 

Rich: I probably do. Absolutely. 

Whitney: Well, thank you so much for taking the time and to Chris as well for coming up, Chris, was there any other final words you wanted to end with? Anything that we didn't get around. 

Chris: Nothing for me. Pleasure to be here. Thanks so much. Jack and rich for putting me, putting me on the spot. I was, I was looking forward to a nice afternoon. Listen, and you guys really turned the table. 

Rich: Nice. I was going to maybe start talking about, I thought you were going to start talking about Staywell meetings. Chris, when, when the conference came up, I thought we were going to, I thought it was going to keep going. 

Chris: We can, we can also shameless plug, but we also have Staywell meetings. 

Whitney: I mean, that's exciting. I already want to look into that too. I mean, honestly, that, that is an incredibly important thing. I hope you stay well, trade shows because it's a, it's a concern. A lot of people in the business world myself included want to go back to these in-person conferences and shows and meetings, but have in the back of their head, this fear that they're not going to be safe. So given what you're working on, it's incredibly helpful. And the peace of mind element of all different parts of travel and coming together with us.

Jack: Cool. Well, awesome. 

Well, thanks again to rich to Chris and Jason and Stephanie for your amazing questions. And Jack, thanks for inviting rich on. I could listen for a long time. Rich. I, I tried to look up to see if you were on other podcasts and wasn't able to find it, but you're a natural to Jack's point.

I hope that you do other podcasts, and I know you do a lot in clubhouse, so where else can people find you and learn more about all the incredible knowledge that 

Rich: I like to hide? I was hoping he was going to have me on with Dr. Hyman. I wanted to ask Dr. Hyman questions and you know, it's easier to ask questions right then at the answer that yeah, I'm not that active on the front. I, again, my job is to be thinking about the strategy, thinking about what's next and where to go. Doing that research. And you know, I think even people at Day-Lewis are like, what does rich really do? And you know, what I do is help try to be in front of the curve on, on many of the things that we're, that we're doing and, and seeing what's next. And and I'm doing a lot of that right now. 

Jack: So that's, that's why I think it was a treat to have him on here. It's not your typical guy in the forefront, but he's a guy in the back end. That's getting it done. You know, it looks cool. 

Whitney: Absolutely. And where is the best way for people to learn more about the stay well program and Delosand everything else? Is there one website or do they all have their own websites? Where do they go 

Rich: for the name there? There's yeah, there's multiple websites, but Delos.Com will lead you everywhere. There's also Staywell rooms to learn more about, you know, the international well building Institute while certified.

But you know, you go into detail on the website, I'll get you to all those places, but we're. You know, we're, we're solidly behind this, this wellness movement. And I think I think it's going to be exciting 2022, if we could start to get beyond this pandemic. 

Whitney: Absolutely. Well, thanks again. And thanks to everyone that was listening live, and those that are listening to the podcast, we have a series of amazing people coming up that Jack has curated.

If you want to learn more, you can tap on my profile or Jack, if you're in clubhouse or just go to myessensia.com/podcast, and you can actually sign up to be notified of upcoming events and view all the recordings of, of including Dr. Hyman, where rich you can go. Listen, if you haven't yet to hear all of the amazing answers he gave about.

Rich: Yeah, I wanted to, I wanted to ask him questions Jack. Next time 

Whitney: we might have to do a part two or maybe Jack. We have the final episode of this series is all of the guests come together. Actually, that could be pretty cool. Jason's over there. Clapping on Columbia. 

Jason Wrobel: That's a great idea. That's a fantastic, 

Jack: that would be pretty cool. Let's see if we can get everyone on hold as the weeks go by. We'll figure it out.

Whitney: Amazing. Well, thanks rich. Yes. Thanks rich. Thanks everyone else. Lots coming soon. So stay tuned and we hope to see you here back on clubhouse or on the podcast very soon. Bye everyone. Take care.