From November 6-9, the Global Wellness Institute brought the world of wellness to Miami for their 2023 Summit: A Time of Transformation.

The lineup of speakers and panelists was star-studded and filled with heavyweights from across the spectrum of the health and wellness industry.

Vera Iconica founder and CEO Veronica Shreibeis-Smith was in attendance, joining a panel conversation titled Beauty is Not Actually Just in the Eye of the Beholder hosted by Jessica Jesse of BuDhaGirl and featuring Anjan Chatterjee, Professor of Neurology, Psychology and Architecture.



The panel discussed Anjan’s project to bring about a ‘slow looking’ movement for visiting museums, where people spend at least 15 minutes with a piece of art rather than the current average of 27 seconds.

Veronica brought up the mosh scene at the Mona Lisa, with people pushing and shoving to get their turn to take a selfie, and how this couldn’t be farther from an experience that should be about appreciating beauty.

They discussed how the experience of beauty is multi-sensory and how we need to take the time to slow down and give gratitude to all our senses in order to have a profound experience.

Highlights from the summit:

The summit opening with a talk by Louie Schwartzberg, filmmaker and founder of The Louie Channel.


Veronica: “His work always makes me cry. Messages of beauty and love bring transformation and hope.”

Check out The Louie Channel here. You’ll be moved by his videos featuring beautiful stories intertwined with stunning imagery. They are truly uplifting, moving and inspiring.

Simone Biles winning the Debra Simon Award for Furthering Mental Wellness. Her message was both that ‘it’s ok to be not ok,’ and that we do not need to be afraid to be great.


Timbaland, producer on bringing artists ranging from Elton John, Nelly Furtado and Justin Timberlake their own unique sound. He discussed the process of creation and the importance of using and trusting your intuition to guide to you to the right note, tone, beat. Veronica commented on how closely this aligned with her process in creating architecture and defining space.


He told his story of battling addiction, crediting his faith with helping him regain his health. His solution to mental health is learning to like (if not love) life in order to take the first step away from wanting to escape from it.

He explained that he measures his success not by fame or record sales, but through the moments when the world is moved by his creations.

Deyan Sudjic, Architecture professor and critic, in conversation with Stefano Cesario, Architect with Foster and Partners on ‘Fixing Cities: Architecture or Surgery? What Architecture Can Do to Help.’

They discussed how the modernist utopian visions of architects such as Le Corbusier and Oscar Niemeyer quickly became dystopian realities, and that the grand idea that we can start from scratch is not the best solution. Renovation or adaptive reuse of cities and buildings is often better.


As with all their events, the Global Wellness Summit 2023 was nothing short of spectacular. As we pursue our mission towards a form of architecture and a built environment that places wellness as a top priority, it’s inspiring to see so many other people in so many different fields all working towards similar goals. The world is becoming more aware and more concerned with health and wellness as an over-arching value that shapes our lives. As the title of the event suggests, it feels like it truly is a time for transformation.