INTERNATIONAL REPORT—Wellness is a holistic pathway for positive change. By shutting off the automatic pilot on daily life, an individual’s healing journey can begin. One way to embrace a practice of healthy choices and conscious living is to learn from the professionals.
“I believe the concept of wellness is evolving and focusing more on the overall well-being of each individual person, allowing for an improved physical and mental state. This will of course increase a person’s quality of life in terms of good relationships, efficiency in daily commitments, etc.,” said Mafalda Sirolla, spa manager, Hotel Principe di Savoia: Club 10 Fitness & Beauty Center, a Dorchester Collection property in Milan. “For this reason, it is wise to promote the culture of well-being, healthy nutrition and a holistic lifestyle. It’s all about finding a balanced work and personal life.”
At the Dorchester Collection, healthy tourism is in focus as the priorities of its guests have shifted toward wellness in the form of higher-quality F&B, personal health consultations and cutting-edge spa treatments. As a result, these properties have elevated their services to meet the increasing demand.
Hotel Business tapped the minds of seven Dorchester Collection spa managers around the globe to highlight new services and trends in the wellness movement.
More Than a Feeling
In Los Angeles at Dorchester Collection’s The Spa at Hotel Bel‑Air, Spa Manager Nichole Hester’s philosophy on personal wellness is that it’s an opportunity to learn and grow as individuals. “Wellness surrounds us in various aspects of our lives and is a primary key to longevity,” said Hester. “We pay special attention to the feelings that create and support wellness.”
Some of the techniques Hester’s team employs to create an atmosphere of wellness are using healthy ingredients in F&B; creating a comfortable setting in the spa treatment room; incorporating natural outdoor sounds and lighting into the space; using aromatherapy scents throughout the spa and during treatments; surrounding the spa with lush gardens and a peaceful waterfall; offering yoga or meditation sessions and retail offerings like yoga mats, aromatherapy and reuseable water bottles.
Beverages With Benefits
Move over cucumber water—drinks fortified with vitamins or healing herbs sipped before and after spa services can help set the tone for relaxation. At Dorchester Collection’s The Beverly Hills Hotel Spa, guests can consume elixir beverages from the Beauty Chef at the beginning of a spa experience.
“These elixirs focus on various health benefits and we rotate them throughout the week, choosing from either the Antioxidant, Collagen or the Hydration. I am personally a fan of the Hydration elixir; it helps me feel like I’ve had more water than I actually have throughout the day, and the flavor is delicious,” said Kristy Whitford, spa manager, The Beverly Hills Hotel Spa in Beverly Hills, CA.
Personalization is a Pillar of Great Service
Sally Pedder, spa manager for London’s The Dorchester Spa, is keenly aware of the desire for therapists to bring expertise and knowledge to guests through special and personalized therapies.
“We have a variety of exciting projects in the pipeline to satisfy the desire for personalized service, including an upcoming pop-up event with SHA Wellness Clinic of Alicante, Spain, renowned for integrating natural therapies, therapeutic nutrition and preventative medicine into their treatments,” said Pedder. “Our philosophy is to cater to the individual needs of each and every guest that visits the spa. Being a city spa, many of our clients pop in for a quick treatment, but an equal amount prefer to linger and relax sometimes even booking for the entire day. Our goal is for every guest to feel revitalized and satisfied after their experience, regardless of the type of therapy they receive.”
The Science Behind Wellness
Dubbed a haute couture spa for the body, mind and soul, the Dorchester Collection’s Hotel Plaza Athénée’s Dior Institut in Paris has commenced a deep dive into the inner workings of natural ingredients and their impact in order to provide high-end, organic treatments for guests.
“The Dior Science researchers have been examining the skin’s unique reactions to better understand its complex mechanisms. They investigate new scientific avenues including stem cells, cutaneous inflammation and cellular detoxification, and develop their work on the benefits of precious floral active ingredients,” said Mélina Pourcel, Hotel Plaza Athénée’s Dior Institut. “Grown in the Dior Gardens in different climates around the world, ingredients such as the Rose de Granville and the Madagascar Longoza offer natural qualities for exceptional results. These natural ingredients are used, for example, in the Dior signature face treatment—Dior Prestige Awakening of the Senses—a treatment specially developed for all types of skin, even the most demanding. This luxurious treatment, combined with stress-releasing strokes, lavishes the face and back in absolute comfort. The skin is intensely nourished and replenished, leaving it as soft as a rose petal.”
An Escape From the Ordinary
According to Ann Costello, spa manager for Dorchester Collection’s The Spa at Coworth Park in England, there are different strokes for different folks in terms of wellness services—from a moment of luxury to an all-day affair—but what remains is the spa team’s desire to meet guests’ needs.
“The theme of wellness continues to gain momentum, with a unprecedented feeling that health is the new wealth. Everyone is looking for a solution or an escape from everyday stressors; hence the increase in spa-day business. We’ve noticed more people booking spa-day memberships, as guests want to have a one-stop shop for exercise, swimming and personal training,” said Costello. “There’s also a drive to bring more awareness around mental health, encouraging spas to incorporate tools for people to meditate within their offerings and menus. At The Spa at Coworth Park, a wellness spa day will be added to the treatment menu, which will include an orange blossom sensory experience and a personal training session, including a pick ’n mix wellness platter in The Spatisserie.”
Caroline Loison, spa manager of Paris’ Le Meurice Spa Valmont, sees guests craving the need to melt away stress immediately upon entering the spa. To create a sense of serenity, her team seeks to foster a space that is, at once, elegant and relaxing.
“In terms of care, now more than ever, guests are wishing to erase the tiredness in their faces generated by the stress of everyday life. Our treatment uses ice to smooth the facial features and massage the muscles of the face to remove tension and lines. Each treatment is personalized to the guest,” said Loison. “We believe that to take care of oneself, one must find inner peace, feel safe, rediscover one’s body and develop one’s creativity. At Spa Valmont, we sincerely listen to each of our customer’s needs and desires to offer them a panel of face and body care unique to the individual. We work in collaboration with all services in the hotel to make sure guests’ experiences don’t end once they leave the spa setting.”