Spas have been a popular amenity and great revenue generator for some hotels for many years. The recently developing trend among travelers seeking health and wellness solutions in every aspect of their lives, including hotel stays, has brought hotel spas into greater emphasis. Fueled by the stress of their lives, many hotel customers are looking for much more from the hotels they stay with. These travelers are increasingly planning their trips around staying at hotels that offer spas, well equipped gyms, and healthy food choices as members of a new travel type, the wellness traveler.
Hotel spas have been traditionally viewed as luxury amenity services and during the last economic downturn experienced significantly slower growth rates as compared to other hotel services departments such as, food and beverage for example. According to the Trends in the Hotel Spa Industry report from PKF Consulting USA, early on in the nation’s economic turnaround, hotel spas showed a negative growth rate of -10.5% in 2010, as compared to the food and beverage departments at 5.6% positive growth during the same time period.
But beginning in 2011, as the recovery really began to gain steam, and in clear reflection of the hospitality industry’s health and wellness trend, hotel spas have grown in revenue generation faster than other hotel departments. In 2013, last year for available figures, hotel spa revenue growth surpassed the growth rates of other hotel departments. For example, during the 2013 timeframe hotel spa revenue grew at a rate of 4.6%, compared to 4.3% for the food and beverage departments of hotels. These figures clearly illustrate the growth of spa services pointing toward the overall health and wellness trend within the hospitality industry.
Interestingly enough, the hotel property type to experience the greatest level of growth in spa generated revenue, in the same time period, appears to be the hotel properties situated in urban areas. Thanks to the patronage of local area residents, hotels located in cities have gained increased revenues by offering spa memberships and selling associated services to their neighbors. The PKF Consulting USA report states that hotel spas in urban areas derive 55 percent of the subsequent revenue from among local residents. This is as opposed to resort hotel spas generating 45 percent local spa business.
The increased level of interest by the traveling public in health and wellness, and more specifically spas, has made it more profitable for those hotels that have invested in facilities and staff. The trend should only see continued growth, providing another opportunity for increased revenue and higher profits for hoteliers.
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