In the wellness sector, a trend that certainly needs to be monitored closely is the increased interest in ‘jewel spas’, small, high-end venues that we have learnt to call Boutique Spas, drawing inspiration from what we all identify as Boutique Hotels.
More and more people are looking for unforgettable experiences when they travel. People are no longer simply looking for a place to sleep, but a place that offers a dream experience and leaves beautiful memories. Because of this, and because of the style and sophistication that distinguishes them and their respect for the environment, they are very popular with young customers, couples and the international jet-set.
What does the customer look for in this location? What are the characteristics? Which investment?
Let’s delve into that in this article.
What a Boutique SPA is
A Boutique Spa is an ‘exceptional’ place in terms of its location, concept, design, and the treatment protocol it offers. It is a place devoted to offering a totally customised and ‘tailor-made’ experience, just like a haute couture boutique that takes all the clients’ expectations and makes them a reality.
Clearly this is a special place that focuses on offering targeted, exclusive, and limited spa services and treatments to guarantee high quality standards and be consistent with the chosen spa concept.
What are the characteristics of a Boutique SPA
LeBoutique Spas are luxury environments, characterised by distinctive design, unique furnishings, refined atmospheres and, sometimes, located in very attractive locations.
LThe aim is to propose an experience that combines luxury, wellness, landscape, art, culture, and tradition. The term ’boutique’ indicates something small, intimate, exclusive, so Boutique Spas are not large, usually ranging from 250 to 750 square metres.
The concept behind it must be characterised by a strong personality, a clear brand identity. This must be communicated through targeted communication strategies capable of speaking to its target audience.
Unique design, enriched by exceptional pieces of furniture, refined atmospheres, and high-quality finishes. The presence of high craftsmanship certainly increases its prestige.
The atmosphere must be intimate and comfortable and able to pamper all the senses: the lights and colours must be well studied, the music as well, the entire spa circuit should be characterised by precise olfactory notes that help characterise the place and remain impressed in the memory.
Services must be highly customised, to meet the needs and habits of customers, even anticipating them before they manifest themselves. Signature treatments and high-end cosmetics are a must!
The entire team must be constantly trained to maintain a high quality of service, to be aligned with the concept: everyone must speak the language of the brand.
Stunning locations and ‘wow’ environments
Boutique Spas are often found within Boutique Hotels. Structures that have sprung up in truly enchanting locations, far from the destinations of mass tourism and precisely for this reason most appreciated by their clients.
Environments designed and created to allow customers to make the most of their stay both in discovering interesting places and in regenerating and taking care of themselves. Here the wellness programme is of a very high standard, as is the attention to design, art, restoration, and enhancement of historic or charming hotel environments.
High-end wellness and unusual proposal
The professionals who look after guests’ wellbeing in the Boutique Spas are of the highest rank, just as carefully selected and innovative are the activities and treatments: they range from metabolic medicine sessions to treatments with local spices, from open-air gyms for ‘wild fitness’ to yoga sessions surrounded by palm trees, from Irish meditation to treatments with mud and local herbs. Care in the design of the Spa menu is very important.
How to design a Boutique SPA
The ‘wow’ effect that the customer finds in a Boutique SPA is not the result of chance.
Every aspect is thought out, designed, verified and realised with the utmost attention to detail and care for the environment, the needs of investors and the trends appreciated by customers.
We asked Régis Boudon-Doris, Founder and CEO of bbspa_Group.
He explains: “Today more than ever working on a Boutique SPA project is an exciting and demanding challenge. It is exciting because you have to be daring, innovative, but at the same time you have to combine the concept with respect for the surrounding environment, art and culture. It is demanding because the balance between invested capital, end result and productivity must always be guaranteed. All this with the needs of today’s increasingly informed, demanding customers in mind. The energy to be spent on the retention of customers is ever greater”.
What are the investment costs to implement it
To build a Boutique SPA we have to assume a cost per square metre starting from 4,000€, then according to the spa concept and its Business Plan we define the specific budget for each structure
Some examples of Boutique Spas
“Among the latest projects that have already been completed that best sum up all these distinctive traits, we cannot fail to mention LA SPA Helvetia & Bristol in Florence and the Ambassade Biologique Recherche in Rome”,says Régis Boudon-Doris.