Formulating a Wellness Concept
To build a competitive wellness destination, it is critical to develop its own distinct concept and philosophy early on, appealing to the target audience, and notably upholding basic beliefs and principles. Some established destination spas set out to provide a new wellness regimen to the market and are successful in building their own following, thanks to the success of their program development, service selections, administration, and quality of treatment.
There is no “one size fits all” shortcut to destination spa development, unlike traditional chain-affiliated hotels with certain brand standards that are easy to copy and paste to another place; some may focus on a single specialty treatment, while others may offer diverse modalities. This underlines the importance of spa-and-wellness hospitality experience for critical phases ranging from feasibility to curatorial schematic design, all of which are critical to the overall success of the facility and development.
Ananda in the Himalayas, for example, takes a comprehensive approach to wellbeing by combining the ancient disciplines of Ayurveda, Vedanta, and yoga with contemporary world methods. SHA Wellness Clinic, on the other hand, takes a more medical approach, combining modern Japanese macrobiotics with advanced Western therapy. The philosophy is then used to build their programs and offerings, which range from holistic and experience-driven to specialized and results-driven.
It is customary for hotel and destination spa management to be integrated with ownership. Spa and wellness programs are distinct property elements that have a direct impact on guest value and experience quality. Having an owner that has different goals than management could be detrimental to internal advancement. Meanwhile, an operator with opposing core values may fail to produce and communicate an excellent guest journey.
The entire establishment must be meticulously planned and developed with a firm grasp of the concept and philosophy. The company’s core values should be jointly shared aims in order to offer a truly integrated and authentic wellness destination. This safeguards the overall experience’s quality and integrity while also increasing operational efficiency and personnel retention over time.
The goal is to encourage interactions among all departments, facilities, and services, as well as to provide a tranquil environment with plenty of indoor and outdoor public space for complete relaxation and private reflection, including in-room experiences, F&B programs, and green-space integrations like nature, walkways, and overall site planning. The layout and planning of these facilities should support year-round fluent operations with indoor and outdoor variation based on seasonality and region.
Investor’s Passion and Drive
A common thread running through the business of well-established and popular destination spas is that the owners or founders themselves have a deep belief and tremendous enthusiasm for health and wellness, with the vision and goal of sharing it with the rest of the world. Some may have had health issues and recovered through a certain regimen, whilst others may have strong histories and expertise in specific medicine, such as evidence-based Western medicine or alternative medicine. A personal investment in well-being can help to expedite the commitment to these extremely specific and diverse program kinds.
The period to stabilization of a destination wellness spa, as well as certain typical hotel and resort spas, might be 3-5 years due to the increasing demand for wellness products and program variety. The choice of services, program kinds, and amenities can have a significant impact on and drive performance dynamics. As a result, as part of the overall plan, investors and developers must be informed and aware of numerous program possibilities and revenue models at the outset of investment and development. This will safeguard long-term investments and enable stronger, more successful outcomes.
High-Quality Talent Recruitment & Retention
In the traditional hotel industry, education and training are always important, however, the booking process and scheduling systems associated with wellness hospitality frequently necessitate in-depth and cross-departmental training to efficiently satisfy client expectations. Employees who help customers with booking accommodations and services must have a thorough awareness of applicable spa and wellness offers. This is basic training required to successfully assist visitors with connected concerns and know exactly how to manage program know-how when necessary.
Improving employee happiness and loyalty to boost productivity and employee retention is also an important and effective long-term strategy. With the purpose of reducing employee turnover, this supports the continuity of services and level of quality, resulting in increased return visitor involvement. Integrating training programs created for specific onsite regional manual services can offer value and economic advantage to the local community, whereas native language and hard skills are frequently integrated to improve the entire experience and variety of intrinsic benefits.
Sales & Marketing
An item of significant expenditure in marketing is required during the first few years after opening for the resort and programs to spread their messaging. This can be accomplished efficiently through traditional and digital marketing tactics such as travel agencies, brand ambassadors, social media influencers, online presence, and brand campaigns. These efforts can also be aided through feeder market events, strategic partnerships, local concierges, and tour guides. Once a loyal following and client base has been established, less marketing money and effort is usually required.
It is critical that the wellness program and spa have their own centralized and dedicated sales team, with regional and global collaborations. SHA Wellness Clinic, for example, spent substantially on direct sales and marketing, creating a dedicated following from over 60 nations, including Russia, Mexico, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates.