Notes from London Spa Conference
The London spa conference is over, and I’m heading back to New York. I reviewed the notes I took over the course of three days listening to over 30 speakers and made a short list of “highlights” – things that resonated with me:
- Twilight Spa – incorporating some nighttime bathing
- De-staffed spa experiences – treatments that don’t require a one-on-one therapist situation
- Hero product – a product line’s flagship product
- Weekly brag – a spa manager’s way of having staff recognize other staff’s contributions
- E-tail – retail on line
- Tribathalon – corny or clever? Am thinking corny
Additionally, some assorted concepts to ponder:
- In spa design, put the retail space on the right of where a guest checks in. It is the more natural path for them to take.
- Underlight the spa…people are taking their clothes off. Amen.
- The spa experience should also be a cultural experience.
- Do a few things well. A restaurant menu that includes Chinese, Italian, American and Greek food is dizzying, and you don’t really expect anything to be fabulous. Ditto with spa treatment menus.
- When you hire people smarter than you are, you prove you are smarter than they are.
- Rachel Caldwell, General Manager for Golden Door Spa, shared a good answer to the common question, “What happens if you spend a lot of money training your staff and then they leave?”: “What happens if you don’t train them and they stay?”
- One of the reasons Balinese therapists are considered by many to be the best in the world is not only because they grow up giving massages to their family members, but also because they are taught to pray before touching a person. The philosophy is “from the heart of the therapist, touching the soul of the guest.”
- How busy a spa is on a cruise ship greatly depends on the nationality mix of the people aboard the ship. Who uses the spa the most? Americans.
- Managers are people who do things right while leaders are people who do the right thing.
- Cut down on the “b.s.” Seems that people are getting a bit tired of the footbath rituals and bells and whistles during facials. “Just give me a good treatment with great massage,” they are saying. Here, here.
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