Luxury Hotel Reviews – Stress Relief Techniques – A Spa Trend For the Business Traveler

A spa’s main purpose is to heal and nourish mind, body, and spirit, so accordingly, the adoption of holistic spa principles can enhance the long-term success of a Spa Resort. Today the luxury traveler is seeking new life structures that are authentic and life-enriching experiences with a shift from fundamental needs, to higher needs and wants. This means that the demand for restorative and healing services provided by spas is likely to continue to grow exponentially.

As hotel spas move into the wellness arena, a unique, authentic program that can address the travelers whole being and extend the spa experience to a personal in room atmosphere must encompass their need to de-stress, relax and feel a change evidenced by a good night sleep. A successful resort spa visit therefore, should include fitness, health, and relaxation and address some spiritual component.”Beauty is almost a given,” according to International Spa Association “But it is superficial. It is external. We say what is internal is as important as the beauty aspect.”

Spa-goers want more than a massage that feels good for 20 minutes. They want advice on skin care and diet; products to recreate the spa experience at home; and techniques they can use on their own to relax and stay fit, from exercise yoga to aromatherapy.

Wellness programs need to include information on how to create and maintain a long-term healthy and balanced lifestyle. Consumers are no longer content with short term pampering but want to extend their healthy programs into a daily routine, turning the spa experience into a lifetime program.

A blend of mainstream and spiritual treatment, which include classic spa treatments such as massage, reflexology, yoga and other healing and relaxing programs with more esoteric practices such as meditation and Reiki, to cater to the growing demand in spiritual as well as physical restoration and balance. Along with its range of classic treatments, many spa hotels now offer the option of Reiki and classes on yoga with ‘Sun salutations’ meditation.

In addition, spiritual practices such as meditation and yoga are more likely to appeal in the future as part of a standard spa menu. The avoidance of gimmicks, over-commercialization, and poorly trained therapists is important to avoid turning off the new luxury spa customer seeking an authentic experience.

Surveys show that hotel’ spa department profits will grow by approximately 50% and that high-end spas generate revenues in the region of $30-40 per occupied room. In general hotel spa guests are not very price sensitive and adding a spa often means more guests, who spend more money and are more likely to return. And of course a quality spa facility helps enhance a hotel overall competitiveness by distinguishing it from the competition.

Many luxury destination hotel spas have even begun to combine medical care, nutrition and fitness with relaxation and pampering. Some have collaborated with health wellness organizations like The Cleveland Clinic in Ohio, or a renowned psychologists like Dr. Dale V. Atkins to dispense lifestyle advice.

All of these hotels are moving to design a complete spa experience and extend it to an in room atmosphere. This attracts repeat clients with an environment of total health and wellness which includes weight control, stress management and spirituality.

An example of this value proposition is the Westin Fitness Heavenly renewal program which even includes a wellness basket delivered to the guest complete with flowers, spa CD, aromatherapy, and dark chocolate.

An in room custom Hotel & Spa promotion extends the value proposition for spa amenities with free to guest or pay for view fitness channel programming. Over 3000 hotels the likes of Hyatt Hotels, Four Seasons, Marriott, Hilton, Sheraton, W, Ritz Carlton, Le Meridian, and others offer on command (OCV) programming with pay for view yoga and fitness videos which cater to the specific needs of travelers and those on the go. Artfully rendered, high-quality in-room yoga videos are usually available in three primary categories-Fitness, Stress Reduction and Mental Focus. These videos are purchased for $20.00 online and also on CD in some hotel spa or gift stores.

“With all the delays and long hours that come with modern travel, it is no surprise that frequent travelers have a hard time sticking to their fitness routines,” “For many hotel guests, the on site fitness center is not an option. In room fitness programs are ideal for this audience.”

Not only are the workouts among the most widely practiced and popular programs, but they are also specifically designed to be performed in the guest room using things like a towel, a bed, and a chair – items found in every hotel. It really is like having a personal yoga teacher in the room.

There are many options to stay stress free while traveling for business or pleasure.

Understanding Hotel Reviews

Pick any city to review on any credible hotel review site and you may just find the following: “Fantastic Hotel” preceded days earlier in a review for the same hotel: “Cheap Hotel! Avoid at All Costs!” Which to believe?

Perhaps neither and perhaps both. Recognizing which reviews to accept and which to ignore is quickly becoming an art, yet many travelers find it a grind as they attempt to get to the bottom line. The task is made that much harder because the seeming whims and needs of the reviewers make understanding simple reviews all the more difficult.

This is where a little research and common sense can usually increase the odds of your making a thoughtful decision about the Inn of your choice.

First you must learn to separate the wheat from the chaff. When time allows, you can review numerous travel review sites and focus on the properties you are targeting. This will provide great information to you, not to mention give you helpful tips and advice. Checking several sites can give you a ‘composite’ picture of a given property.

What one should look for in a nutshell are these four important factors.

o At least 10 reviews offered

o The overall average score or rating.

o Recent reviews – none over three years old should be strongly considered.

o Similar rankings on two or three different review sites.

Having at least 10 reviews to consider gives you much to work with. Not considering reviews from five years earlier, particularly when they describe a run down property that may have been sold and remodeled is common sense. Lastly, seeing a top ranked property on TripAdvisor backed up by a solid ‘average score’ on Travelocity or Expedia gives you a great view of how different reviewers size up a given property.

THE most important of the above is that there are enough reviews present to give a reasonable average. A property with three reviews where one is a ’1′ and one is a ’3′ and the last a ’5′ tells you nothing. Ten reviews indicating a 4.2 average tells you a lot! Looks for these where possible and on different sites and I guarantee you won’t be misled.