In Toronto Her Majesty’s Pleasure, a vibrant spa with a mix of beauty services, luxury retail, bar and café, competes with the best restaurants in the city. It’s a prime example of how the modern wellness environment, especially in urban settings, is undergoing rapid transformation. Hotel and day spas in cities and towns are prioritising community and connection over an environment of retreat and isolation. A great alternative to the traditional Friday night bar scene for the growing number of health-focused, teetotal millennials.
As such, signature programming, services and spa experiences are evolving. While treatment room revenue (most notably massage and aesthetic services) remain a critical driver for spa owners and operators, it’s now enhanced and balanced out by opportunity generated via group business. Hydrothermal circuits, such as those offered at Aire Ancient Baths in NYC and Barcelona and Bota Bota in Montreal, Quebec are but three examples. Beyond that, educational workshops, product demonstrations, beauty bars, botox parties, lunch-break and happy-hour express services and so much more are central urban spa menu fixtures.
Design concepts and space planning are changing too. Drawing inspiration from co-working spaces, we’ve seen great success with urban spas sporting a more flexible, open layout that promotes interaction and gathering. A strong food and beverage element can both encourage guests to linger longer and be a meaningful contributor to top and bottom line performance.
Not only are we excited to see this movement revitalise the urban spa market. The rise of social wellness presents a more fulfilling way to gather with friends, to learn and grow, and to prioritise self-care and socialisation in meaningful ways.
Bota Bota is encouraging community over isolation photo: ©Marie-Reine Mattera