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Letters

Do you have a strong opinion, or disagree with somebody else’s point of view on topics related to the spa industry? If so, Spa Business would love to hear from you. Email your letters, thoughts and suggestions to [email protected]



BABY BOOMERS AND THE DICHOTOMY IN SPA DESIGN

 

Cary Collier
 
Cary Collier Principal Blu Spas

The Ageing Consumers article in Spa Business magazine (see SB15/1) was an excellent read about the importance of spa design, treatment, service and products that are age-friendly to the 450 million (and growing) population of baby boomers.

It highlighted to us that as global spa designers, we must occupy two places at once: the present and the future. Baby boomers are resistant to being categorised as becoming ‘elderly’, so more subtle, discreet design and programming in spas which emphasise vitality and wellness will be key.

We recommend following the Seven Bes of Spa Planning to cater to this market:

1. Be Bright: light up areas where reading is required (menu of services, signage, lounge/relaxation areas)

2. Be Easy: simplicity is key. Focus on slowing down and deep healing treatments such as those incorporating breathing, stretching, massage, yoga and acupuncture all in one peaceful session

3. Be Clean: infuse areas with plants to scrub the air and inject more oxygen. And, of course, use low VOC paints, antimicrobial finishes and non-slip surfaces

4. Be Clear: the path of travel around the spa should be made obvious and kept free of obstacles with few inclines and no steps

5. Be Balanced: design movement programming to begin at the feet, not only to enhance balance, but to remind guests to take care of their feet and posture and to guide them in getting ‘earthed’ from the ground up, becoming present and renewed

6.  Be Real: it’s important that staff are sincere, compassionate, patient and kind

7. Be The Change: the spas of the future should be places of inspiration, where health, wellness and personal growth merge and thrive

So, are spas ready for this demographic shift? The answer can be yes, especially if they act decisively and embrace change. Watch out for a global spa evolution.

Contact Cary Collier
Email: [email protected]
Tel: +1 406 862 2200



INVESTORS TO REPLACE SPA OPERATORS TO TURN A PROFIT

 

Roger Allen
 
Roger Allen CEO Resources for Leisure Assets

If spa operators don’t address the lack of profits and margins, I see a time when investors will take over the running of facilities to maximise their assets.

Investors and spas are not natural bedfellows because the margins in spas are so tough. If operators are to turn a profit, there are key obstacles to tackle.

Overdeveloped facilities, which are too big or over-equipped, are the most common hurdles. To avoid this, more accurate forecasting into predicated capture rates and usage – which have in an impact on size and investment – should be carried out at the start of planning. Get this wrong and it’s harder to drive profitability.

The industry is also guilty of poor performance management. There’s too much focus on KPIs when managers don’t know how to use the data they already have. Spas need to get back to actually making money by focusing on cash flow and budgeting: something I’ve rarely seen. Instead, there are elusive incremental increases in budgets, which investors have a hard time understanding, and there’s no post-performance evaluation either.

Another bugbear is ‘one size fits all’ commissioning structures which means poor performers are overvalued and star performers under-valued. Caps on commission also demotivate high performing staff. In short, the structures aren’t flexible or being optimised and staff aren’t engaged in them.

Investors the world over are starting to test the resourcefulness of spa management teams. If they fail to prove they’re up to the challenge, they may soon be out of a job.

Contact Roger Allen
Email: [email protected]
Twitter: @rogeraallen


 


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SELECTED ISSUE
Spa Business
2015 issue 3

View issue contents

Leisure Management -



Letters


Do you have a strong opinion, or disagree with somebody else’s point of view on topics related to the spa industry? If so, Spa Business would love to hear from you. Email your letters, thoughts and suggestions to [email protected]


BABY BOOMERS AND THE DICHOTOMY IN SPA DESIGN

 

Cary Collier
 
Cary Collier Principal Blu Spas

The Ageing Consumers article in Spa Business magazine (see SB15/1) was an excellent read about the importance of spa design, treatment, service and products that are age-friendly to the 450 million (and growing) population of baby boomers.

It highlighted to us that as global spa designers, we must occupy two places at once: the present and the future. Baby boomers are resistant to being categorised as becoming ‘elderly’, so more subtle, discreet design and programming in spas which emphasise vitality and wellness will be key.

We recommend following the Seven Bes of Spa Planning to cater to this market:

1. Be Bright: light up areas where reading is required (menu of services, signage, lounge/relaxation areas)

2. Be Easy: simplicity is key. Focus on slowing down and deep healing treatments such as those incorporating breathing, stretching, massage, yoga and acupuncture all in one peaceful session

3. Be Clean: infuse areas with plants to scrub the air and inject more oxygen. And, of course, use low VOC paints, antimicrobial finishes and non-slip surfaces

4. Be Clear: the path of travel around the spa should be made obvious and kept free of obstacles with few inclines and no steps

5. Be Balanced: design movement programming to begin at the feet, not only to enhance balance, but to remind guests to take care of their feet and posture and to guide them in getting ‘earthed’ from the ground up, becoming present and renewed

6.  Be Real: it’s important that staff are sincere, compassionate, patient and kind

7. Be The Change: the spas of the future should be places of inspiration, where health, wellness and personal growth merge and thrive

So, are spas ready for this demographic shift? The answer can be yes, especially if they act decisively and embrace change. Watch out for a global spa evolution.

Contact Cary Collier
Email: [email protected]
Tel: +1 406 862 2200



INVESTORS TO REPLACE SPA OPERATORS TO TURN A PROFIT

 

Roger Allen
 
Roger Allen CEO Resources for Leisure Assets

If spa operators don’t address the lack of profits and margins, I see a time when investors will take over the running of facilities to maximise their assets.

Investors and spas are not natural bedfellows because the margins in spas are so tough. If operators are to turn a profit, there are key obstacles to tackle.

Overdeveloped facilities, which are too big or over-equipped, are the most common hurdles. To avoid this, more accurate forecasting into predicated capture rates and usage – which have in an impact on size and investment – should be carried out at the start of planning. Get this wrong and it’s harder to drive profitability.

The industry is also guilty of poor performance management. There’s too much focus on KPIs when managers don’t know how to use the data they already have. Spas need to get back to actually making money by focusing on cash flow and budgeting: something I’ve rarely seen. Instead, there are elusive incremental increases in budgets, which investors have a hard time understanding, and there’s no post-performance evaluation either.

Another bugbear is ‘one size fits all’ commissioning structures which means poor performers are overvalued and star performers under-valued. Caps on commission also demotivate high performing staff. In short, the structures aren’t flexible or being optimised and staff aren’t engaged in them.

Investors the world over are starting to test the resourcefulness of spa management teams. If they fail to prove they’re up to the challenge, they may soon be out of a job.

Contact Roger Allen
Email: [email protected]
Twitter: @rogeraallen



Originally published in Spa Business 2015 issue 3

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