Unlike American employee-based corporate wellness, some spa wellness programs are starting to deal with quality of life topics past the physical. Corporate wellness in America has been a mild success as medical information, prevention-based efforts. Unfortunately, most such programs have not been of a positive nature focused largely with an exuberant, joyful life.
Wellness education at certain spas represents an advance from historic roles. Most associate spas with beauty treatments, baths, pampering and self-indulgent foo foo. Spas offer healing and rehabilitation, programs for diet and weight loss, fitness testing and holistic treatments and prescriptions. These characteristics will not be abandoned, given their popularity and profitability, however they will not be the focus if spa wellness trends come into full play. Instead, a wellness era will feature lifestyle education for a quality of life-enhancement philosophy, value system and mindset. Real wellness, in the end, is a dramatic option to doctors, drugs and disease.
The brand new spa developments are highlighted with a New York-based international organization called Global Spa Summit, or GSS. This group has sponsored and promoted major trend reports for the past three years. GSS-sponsored studies provide resource material for industry leaders as well as for others seeking insights around the spa movement worldwide. GSS has demonstrated that wellness beyond risk reduction represents a new market for the spa industry. Such a transformation would promote the general welfare by advancing citizen health status and effectiveness. Thus, as the well-off are advantaged, we might expect some trickle down benefits for the rest of us.
Every year, GSS hosts a grand forum for spa leaders. This annual conference is called the Spa Summit. Last year's event in Istanbul focused on wellness. The 2011 Summit begins this Sunday in Bali, Indonesia with a theme "Engage the Change: The client. The Money. The near future."
Spa Wellness Around the world
* From Sweden - Anna Bjurstam, Managing Director of Raison d'Etre, perceives today's consumers as more results oriented, interested in advanced lifestyle coaching, nutrition and chemical-free products. Customers recognize that beauty also comes from within. Wellness is the future; the overall mindset of the consumer is learning to live fitness. Ms. Bjurstam emphasizes the importance of accurate information, preferably science-based.
* From Brazil - Gustavo Albanesi, President from the Brazilian Spa Association, reported impressive growth related to "a new wellness culture trying to find increased life quality, especially in big cities." This culture is different the way people take a look at spas, which are becoming part of day-by-day life. The growth of the spa industry in Brazil is also fueled by major upcoming events, particularly the Olympics and World Cup.For much more details, you need to pay a visit to: wellnesshotel ötztal
* From Europe/Austria - Sha, a spa owner, reports a desire for "Alpine style wellness," adding, "The spa community in Austria must confront and address the fundamental needs of our high-performance society." This latter addresses mental balance and an variety of holistic processes for stress management (particularly burnout-prevention) and also the "real life" of a high-speed society. In Austria and around the world, there's a greater recognition of recent social responsibilities for that spa community, The bottom line is incorporating mental enhancement via philosophy, science and the art."
* From Dr. Tamás Várhelyi, a professor in Hungary, came news that Hungarian spas are focused on medical and wellness tourism. He distinguishes from a traditional spa hotel along with a wellness hotel-something very few countries do. This really is likely a result of Hungary's long good reputation for thermal bathing. The medical spa concept predominates in this region. Last year was the first year the amount of wellness guests was higher than traditional spa hotel guests.
* From Filip Boyen, COO of Orient Express. Updates provided concerning hotel spa operators in Spain, Mexico and South Africa. Plenty of hotels were built-in Spain during the recent construction boom, mostly combined with wellness areas of attraction. The latter tend to be more popular with tourists than locals, who still seek traditional spas. In Mexico, an abundance of new wellness spas can be found centered on yoga and retreats. In South Africa, medical spas address environmental awareness along with other facets of "going green." The secrets of success is going to be offering the highest service standards, a clear concept and wellness education of spa staff.
* From Greece - Vivian Patkos, President & Who owns Le Convivial Luxury Suites & Spas, described innovations in that country emphasizing philosophy and imagination. The Greeks, of course, are recognized for this emphasis, perhaps due to the work of numerous early Greek real wellness pioneers, such as Epictetus, Aristotle, Plato, Socrates, Protagorus, Heraclitus, Xenophanes and Thales of Miletus. While none of these legendary thinkers had occasion to keynote a summer gathering of wellness acolytes in the National Wellness Conference, all made their mark on Greek spas and also the everyone else everywhere. Asked if it's true, because the world's press appeared to suggest, that Greece is "the one and only country accountable for the corruption and collapse of the universe, Ms. Patkos expressed surprise. She expressed surprise at the fact that Greece was so strong, noting that we hadn't realized they had such influence and power. Greece, she noted, has an "upscale lifestyle but suffers from interior defamation." For whatever reasons, and many were suggested, "the European Union, democracy and strong labor benefits all seem not able to protect the existing social structure."
The spa business in Greece includes "big expensive spas having a minimum of personnel and no clients - this is the reality." Ms. Patkos wrote:
Spa business suffers from reduced funding, insufficient psychological interest, insufficient cheap labor, insufficient worst of all or survival scenario planning, insufficient vision. Nobody understands what's going on. Nobody has the solutions. It's long lasting? It is interesting torture. Greeks were always great in dealing with chaos. Which situation means they are seem like home. But finally, how can we survive this crisis? Here are options:
1. Extremely low prices. This is a simple reaction. The most important thing, though, would be to result in the client plead not guilty when utilizing luxury spa facilities. Prices have to be much lower than those for bed and breakfasts, offered being an absolute gift: a present to remind them, silently, but explicitly simultaneously, of their real status.
2. Alternative experiences. Inside a much different way from what they were used to, alternative experiences would be the master key to release clients from guiltiness. They require something totally new inside a more sophisticated, although not expensive package.
3. Minimize expensive consumption. It ought to be available although not advertised and not encouraged. Under these circumstances, consumption of expensive items and merchandise seems kitsch-like and provocative.
4. Alternative pleasure with minimal cost. Idealism, philosophy, culture and art come back. There are many things we can enjoy for free. It's time to include them within our expensive spa products.
5. Effective management. For Americans this is the best, if not the only, method to survive. Greeks were never good in management. These were, however, good in philosophy and imagination. They trained and educated abroad, faced scientific management and now they use it in conjunction with philosophy and imagination. We need low-cost, unique, non-comparable offerings with maximum impact, alternative products and services unavailable elsewhere, along with new tactics to remain side by side with precious clients in this transitional period.
Now, during the economic crisis, purchasing Greece seems more promising than ever before.
* From Germany - When Dietmar Muller-Elmau rebuilt his family's castle hotel, he made a spa in Germany along lines he'd be interested in. Thus, he centered a destination spa on classical and popular music, fine food and wine, wellness and also the education of children in science and applied reason. His innovative spa is called "Schloss Elmau Luxury Spa & Cultural Hideaway." Asked about changes in the past year, Mr. Muller-Elmau mentioned "less curiosity about beauty, more in body & mind." In Germany, investment finance these days within the wellness arena seems to be in "the creation of separate spas to make sure perfect tranquility for adults as well as unrestricted quality time for families with their children."
* From Japan - Tomonori Maruyama, chief researcher for Mitsui Knowledge Industry, acknowledged the obvious-that the spa industry, as with other sectors in Japan, was rocked by the March 11 earthquake, tsunami and subsequent nuclear crisis. A minimum of 560,000 people cancelled their hotel bookings; the entire number of reservations for April-May's domestic tour packages dropped by around half of last year's bookings. However, an anticipated huge recovery construction program is planned for northeastern Japan. Thus, this can be a favorable time for investors in new spa wellness facilities. In a personal message received yesterday, Mr. Maruyama noted he and also the people of Japan "can feel and realize again that they are based on plenty of love all around the world."
* From the U.S. - A summary of American spa developments wasn't part of the global briefings in advance of the Summit, but Jeremy McCarthy, Director, Global Spa Development and processes for Starwood Hotels and Resorts, submitted "a bird's eye look at spas round the world" distilled from trends he noticed. "Sleep, food, mood, exercise and other wellness emphases have evolved from being only a physical dimension of health. As the past several decades have focused on food and use because the two primary secrets of wellness... today's wellness programs incorporate aspects of psychological well-being, such as emotions and mindsets."
* In the host country for that Summit, Martha Tilaar summarized wellness spa developments in Indonesia. Concerning alterations in the past year, Ms. Tilaar said the people, especially women, are influenced by Western fashions and trends. Wellness seems to fit with a necessity everyone feels for balance in daily life. Indonesians seem more conscious now about wellness in this modern, fast world. Nevertheless the industry lacks standardization and competencies.
In addition to the above notes from countries around the world from GSS reports, I also discovered, thanks to Lutz Hertel of the German Wellness Association (Deutschen Wellness Verbands) of developments in the Caribbean. Dr. Abhishek Jain, senior leader at "The BodyHoliday, LeSPORT" in St. Lucia along with a board member of someplace sunny and warm Spa and Wellness Association, noted that there's "a paradigm shift from good old 'pampering' to finding 'purpose', aiming for health 'prevention' and 'promotion' of a healthier lifestyle." Dr. Jain believes "customers seek substantive information on well-being, self-development and added meaning and principles that support increased stimulus thresholds via self-efficacy are in demand."For a lot more info, you ought to check out: wellnesshotel ötztal