Spas of America is launching a new spa and wellness travel website featuring over 300 resort, hotel and destination spas across North America, including 35 in British Columbia. The new online experience enables spa enthusiasts around the world to search and browse premium spa listings, read health and wellness articles and spa reviews, browse and purchase spa and wellness products, and book vacation travel options.
The site was launched during an evening entitled “A Night at the Spa”, held at the Vida Wellness Spa, Sheraton Wall Centre. The relaxation-themed night included spa treatments, organic wine tasting and attendance by a number of British Columbia companies targeting the international spa and wellness industry.
CEO Craig Oliver says, “Spas of America has positioned itself to take advantage of one of the fastest growing segments of the travel and leisure industry. Our site caters to as an increasing aging and affluent population seeking health-conscious and relaxation-oriented vacation experiences.”
The growth of spa and wellness is being seen continent wide. According to ISPA—the International Spa Association, in 2004, 136 million visits were made to all spas in the United States (20.2 million visits in Canada). In the United States, the industry generated an estimated $11.2 billion in revenues.
In Canada, the industry produced Canadian $1.5 billion, up from $610 million in 2002, an increase of 145 percent.
“BC has developed into a popular destination for Spa & Wellness, offering natural beauty, professional staff, world-class facilities and indigenous treatments unique to each property,” says Oliver.
“BC’s diversity offers a wide range of Spa & Wellness experiences for any guest: from urban, such as the Delta Victoria Ocean Pointe Resort, to mountain, at the Four Seasons Whistler, to ocean, at the Ancient Cedars Spa at the Wickaninnish Inn, Vancouver Island or guests can get their own taste of country at the Hills Guest Ranch, in 108 Mile House.”
The Spas of America website was created by Mike Cowie, co-owner of Cowie & Fox Creative—the creative brains behind the Lululemon and Opus Hotel Elixir websites.
Cowie says: “Spas of America offers a fresh, clean, simple and engaging online experience for the spa travel enthusiast. The site empowers customers to search and browse resort, hotel and destination spas geographically, alphabetically, by keyword, or desired spa experience (desert, city, beach, ocean or mountain). All spa listings also leverage the Internet’s viral ability by offering a unique Spa a Friend functionality.”
Lynda Venneman, spa director of the Vida Wellness Spa at the Sheraton Wall Centre in Vancouver, says: “Spa customers are seeking to reconnect, recharge and relax. Spas of America, has captured this customer preference by focusing on the eyes, mind and senses of the customer, offering a clean, simple and image-rich design with easy-to-use navigation.”
By early January 2006, Spas of America plans to unveil properties in the Caribbean and Mexico and launch a travel channel on the site, allowing spa customers to make their own air, ground and hotel bookings.
“Spas of America is positioning itself to be a valued resource to all constituents of the emerging trend in Spa & Wellness,” says Oliver.
“Serving both spa enthusiasts and acting as a valuable communication and marketing tool for resort, hotel and destination spas in British Columbia. Moving forward, Spas of America will form part of an international collection of resort, hotel and destination spas across Asia and Europe, enabling spa enthusiasts around the globe to discover exciting new Spa & Wellness experiences.”