Maximising opportunity in the Hilton and Scandic hotel portfolio
LivingWell, the health club division of the Hilton Group Plc, has developed a new health club concept to compliment its existing two club brands LivingWell Premier and LivingWell Health Clubs.
The first LivingWell Express club is being piloted in the Scandic Copenhagen Sydhavnen hotel, and LivingWell plans an aggressive roll out with a further 40 hotel based clubs set to open in Europe within 1,000 days.
The new concept LivingWell Express was developed after LivingWell conducted research into both the needs of the business traveller and the challenges faced by city hotels offering health clubs.
Health clubs remain in the top three of the most desirable hotel amenities*. Business travellers are becoming more health conscious whilst on the move and LivingWell has experienced a notable recent increase in visits to its hotel-based health clubs.
Although many hotels offer swimming pools and spa areas, the typical business traveller requires the use of the gym area only in which he wants to complete a brief but thorough workout in a hassle free environment.
The research also identified that the typical characteristics of a city centre club differ considerably from `out of town` hotel based clubs. City centre hotel clubs generally face increased local competition, limited parking facilities, indirect club access, and greater dependency on the local working population. This limits the opportunity to sell membership locally, with space dedicated to clubs often providing a greater revenue opportunity for alternative hotel use.
The new concept club was tailored to meet the needs of the business traveller and addresses the hotel issues identified whilst offering a consistent and recognised high quality work out experience.
LivingWell Express offers a high quality design and equipment specification, starting at 40sqm, which can be expanded to suit the hotel. All clubs will be air conditioned, with mounted mirrors and wooden finish flooring, CCTV and a panic alarm for added security, as well as offering a variety of specially tailored 30-45 minute programme cards.
Equipment has been carefully selected to ensure that the guests can achieve a fully rounded workout experience. Each club will offer a minimum of:
* 4 pieces of cardiovascular equipment
* 4 choices of resistance equipment and audio visual equipment
* stretching area with mats, Swiss ball and abs curl
* towel rack and drop, spray and wipe down towels
* scales, water fountain and cups
LivingWell`s MD Paul Harvey said; “Health clubs are increasingly viewed as an essential part of any hotel product and LivingWell Express not only offers a quality, hassle free experience for the business traveller but a cost effective professional hotel health club solution.
“As the LivingWell portfolio and brand grows, the LivingWell Express icon will become a strong USP for both business and domestic guests who will be able to stay healthier on the move, enjoying a guaranteed high level hotel health club experience.”
The club will be managed as a franchise at hotel level with LivingWell providing central support and advice on operations, health and safety and maintenance and will be audited on a regular basis to ensure it maintains LivingWell`s brand and quality standards.