The spa market in the Middle East and Africa is valued at AED 11 billion this year (US $3 billion), according to a new report.
The leisure market report prepared by Euromonitor International ahead of The Leisure Show 2016 and Piscine Middle East 2016 reveals that the UAE shares over 14 per cent of this market with a value of AED 1.59 billion (US $435 million).
Rabia Yasmeen, research analyst at Euromonitor International, commented: “Hotel and resort spas are most common in this region.
“UAE hotels report 60 per cent of total spa visitors are residents who are not otherwise staying on the property.
“Hotels are now leasing spaces for more spa related services as the demand increases.”
Yasmeen continued: “Compared to the US and Asia, current spa market leaders around the world, spas in the Middle East in particular are associated with more luxurious and therapeutic experiences.
“The trend towards health and wellness and medical tourism in this region is expanding.
“Health focused tourists usually spend more than 130 per cent as compared to regular traveller as they seek such experiences as part of leisure activities.
“There is now greater demand for experiences ranged over two to seven nights, health and wellness programmes, meditation, cosmetic treatments, and thematic environments similar to the Asian market.”
The Global Wellness Institute has previously identified Sub-Saharan Africa and the Middle East and North Africa as the fastest growing spa markets in the world.
Euromonitor forecasts that the Middle East and Africa spa market will grow by 21.6 per cent from 2015 until 2019.
Spa openings across the region in 2016 include: Aurora Spa by Joelle at the Mövenpick Hotel Riyadh; Nikki Spa at the Nikki Beach Resort & Spa Dubai; R Resort & Spa Palm Jumeirah; and The Oberoi, Marrakech.