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Interview
Amadeo Serra

"The need to relax and disconnect is universal and this gives Aire a wide appeal across all demographics"


Aire’s global portfolio of eight properties have all reopened after respective regional lockdowns and, according to CEO Amadeo Serra, business is thriving and demand is flooding in once again. Spa Business spoke with Serra to get a deeper insight into the inner workings of the business and its growth plans for the future.

How would you describe the Aire concept?
All Aire Ancient Baths are temples of relaxation. In the beginning, we were inspired by ancient civilisations and their tradition of thermal baths and chose to recreate this experience in historical buildings, focusing on the benefits of water for both body and mind.

The Aire Experience was born as a result of the need that we all have in the modern world to disconnect. So we created an oasis in which you can escape and be transported to a place where time doesn’t exist.

What makes the day spa bathing concept popular?
Unlike traditional day spas we offer a range of experience – baths of different temperatures which guests can sample as a standalone package or combine with one of our exclusive relaxing treatments or rituals. What makes Aire so popular is that it’s one of the few locations that truly offers complete relaxation. Every step of the client journey is carefully considered so the guests are free to relax from the moment they’re in our care.

What are your development plans?
We’ve been growing steadily over the past couple of years, opening in Copenhagen last August and now focusing on establishing Aire in London as a key destination. We’ll also expand further with an opening in Toronto planned for 2023.

What made you choose the international cities that you’re located in?
After establishing four Spanish locations, the natural next step was to expand the brand to key international locations. We always look for cosmopolitan cities that have large populations, as well as a keen interest and investment in leisure and wellbeing. We began our expansion with NYC in 2011, followed by Chicago in 2017, Copenhagen in 2020 and now London in 2021.

How important is the location in the city?
Very important, we’re always in key destinations in the cities we choose and in the case of London, we chose Covent Garden as it’s an iconic district in the heart of the capital that’s loved by tourists and Londoners alike.

We also spend a lot of time finding the right buildings because the site needs to have historic importance and a dialogue with the city it’s in. This is often one of the most challenging aspects of opening Aire, as it needs to be large enough for the facilities but also have an authentic story and connection to the city.

How are you staying true to the original concept as you grow globally?
The experience at Aire is the same in every location. Every space is candlelit, infused with our signature orange blossom scent and the client journey remains the same. We connect the experience to the city it’s in through the historical building and local touches and naturally every space varies in terms of layout, but the core Aire experience remains the same.

Who are your visitors in terms of demographics?
Aire is unique because it’s a very inclusive space. You can come alone, with your mother, a small group of friends or a partner. The need to relax and disconnect is universal and this gives us a wide appeal across all demographics.

Can you give an idea of your facilities’ popularity pre- and post-COVID?
The Aire experience is based on privacy and relaxation and so we’ve only ever allowed a limited capacity at our locations. This meant we didn’t have to drastically change the business model when reopening after the pandemic and demand has been very high in all centres since.

What have you done that’s especially different since COVID-19?
We’ve reinforced our already strict cleaning protocols and amended staff rotas so they’re in small groups to prevent the spread of COVID-19. We also do regular lateral flow testing, and the team wear masks throughout the whole location.

What percentage of people just come for the bathing experience versus bathing plus a treatment?
Most guests come for the full experience of the Ancient Thermal Bath tour and a treatment. Our 120-minute Relaxing Experiences are the most popular, combining time in the Ancient Thermal Bath Experience and a deeply relaxing almond-oil massage ranging from 30-,45-, 60- or 70-minutes. We always encourage people to have a treatment alongside thermal bathing, as we believe it’s the best way to experience Aire.

Megan Whitby is assistant editor of Spa Business magazine | [email protected]

Sign up here to get the Spa Business and Spa Business insider weekly ezines and every issue of Spa Business and Spa Business insider magazines free on digital.
Every Aire site is candlelit and infused with a signature orange blossom scent Credit: photo: AIRE ANCIENT BATHS
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Interview
Amadeo Serra

"The need to relax and disconnect is universal and this gives Aire a wide appeal across all demographics"


Aire’s global portfolio of eight properties have all reopened after respective regional lockdowns and, according to CEO Amadeo Serra, business is thriving and demand is flooding in once again. Spa Business spoke with Serra to get a deeper insight into the inner workings of the business and its growth plans for the future.

How would you describe the Aire concept?
All Aire Ancient Baths are temples of relaxation. In the beginning, we were inspired by ancient civilisations and their tradition of thermal baths and chose to recreate this experience in historical buildings, focusing on the benefits of water for both body and mind.

The Aire Experience was born as a result of the need that we all have in the modern world to disconnect. So we created an oasis in which you can escape and be transported to a place where time doesn’t exist.

What makes the day spa bathing concept popular?
Unlike traditional day spas we offer a range of experience – baths of different temperatures which guests can sample as a standalone package or combine with one of our exclusive relaxing treatments or rituals. What makes Aire so popular is that it’s one of the few locations that truly offers complete relaxation. Every step of the client journey is carefully considered so the guests are free to relax from the moment they’re in our care.

What are your development plans?
We’ve been growing steadily over the past couple of years, opening in Copenhagen last August and now focusing on establishing Aire in London as a key destination. We’ll also expand further with an opening in Toronto planned for 2023.

What made you choose the international cities that you’re located in?
After establishing four Spanish locations, the natural next step was to expand the brand to key international locations. We always look for cosmopolitan cities that have large populations, as well as a keen interest and investment in leisure and wellbeing. We began our expansion with NYC in 2011, followed by Chicago in 2017, Copenhagen in 2020 and now London in 2021.

How important is the location in the city?
Very important, we’re always in key destinations in the cities we choose and in the case of London, we chose Covent Garden as it’s an iconic district in the heart of the capital that’s loved by tourists and Londoners alike.

We also spend a lot of time finding the right buildings because the site needs to have historic importance and a dialogue with the city it’s in. This is often one of the most challenging aspects of opening Aire, as it needs to be large enough for the facilities but also have an authentic story and connection to the city.

How are you staying true to the original concept as you grow globally?
The experience at Aire is the same in every location. Every space is candlelit, infused with our signature orange blossom scent and the client journey remains the same. We connect the experience to the city it’s in through the historical building and local touches and naturally every space varies in terms of layout, but the core Aire experience remains the same.

Who are your visitors in terms of demographics?
Aire is unique because it’s a very inclusive space. You can come alone, with your mother, a small group of friends or a partner. The need to relax and disconnect is universal and this gives us a wide appeal across all demographics.

Can you give an idea of your facilities’ popularity pre- and post-COVID?
The Aire experience is based on privacy and relaxation and so we’ve only ever allowed a limited capacity at our locations. This meant we didn’t have to drastically change the business model when reopening after the pandemic and demand has been very high in all centres since.

What have you done that’s especially different since COVID-19?
We’ve reinforced our already strict cleaning protocols and amended staff rotas so they’re in small groups to prevent the spread of COVID-19. We also do regular lateral flow testing, and the team wear masks throughout the whole location.

What percentage of people just come for the bathing experience versus bathing plus a treatment?
Most guests come for the full experience of the Ancient Thermal Bath tour and a treatment. Our 120-minute Relaxing Experiences are the most popular, combining time in the Ancient Thermal Bath Experience and a deeply relaxing almond-oil massage ranging from 30-,45-, 60- or 70-minutes. We always encourage people to have a treatment alongside thermal bathing, as we believe it’s the best way to experience Aire.

Megan Whitby is assistant editor of Spa Business magazine | [email protected]

Sign up here to get the Spa Business and Spa Business insider weekly ezines and every issue of Spa Business and Spa Business insider magazines free on digital.
Every Aire site is candlelit and infused with a signature orange blossom scent Credit: photo: AIRE ANCIENT BATHS
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Sommerhuber GmbH - Ceramic heated LOUNGER ONE PLUS - ultimate relaxation
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ADVERTISE . CONTACT US

Leisure Media
Tel: +44 (0)1462 431385

©Cybertrek 2021

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