HB Exclusive: Miraval Group Kicks Off Expansion Plan

DANA POINT, CA—Hotel Business has learned Miraval Group, a joint venture of an affiliate of KSL Capital Partners, LLC and Revolution Places, is kicking off brand-expansion plans based on the DNA of its Miraval Resort in Tucson, AZ, with the launch of a Miraval Life in Balance Spa at the five-star St. Regis Monarch Beach here in Orange County.

The project marks the first step in a nationwide expansion program that will introduce full-service destination resorts in key markets and Miraval Life in Balance Spas affiliated with those resorts.

The spa is slated to open April 16 as a part of a $30-million renovation of Monarch Beach’s 400 rooms and public spaces, including a redesigned lobby and introduction of five dining concepts, an expanded pool and bar.

Miraval Life in Balance Spa is a branded lifestyle, wellness and spa facility designed to replace conventional spas at four-star-plus hotels and resorts, and offers Miraval’s signature treatments.

“Effectively, what we’re doing is taking the 20 years’ of experience that we have across all our programming and adapting it to the Southern California market at the Monarch Beach property [while]staying true to the original destination concept,” Steve Rudnitsky, president/CEO of Miraval Group, told Hotel Business.

Rudnitsky, the former president/CEO of Dolce Hotels & Resorts, was brought on board in fourth quarter to lead the group’s expansion and also to support the growth of ESPA International, Ltd., an affiliated company based in London that operates more than 450 upscale spas and markets skin-care products worldwide.

Both Miraval and ESPA are affiliated with KSL Capital Partners, which is based in Denver.

The spa at the St. Regis is a prototype being launched by Miraval Group in concert with KSL Resorts, which share common ownership; it will be managed by both entities. The resort is owned by KSL Capital Partners.

Future Miraval Life in Balance Spas developed for other owners will be managed by Miraval Group.

“We’re in active discussions with a whole host of owners and operators of four- and five-star properties that have spa concepts on property that are looking for solutions to driving margins, to driving RevPOR (revenue per occupied room), to driving overall traffic to their properties beyond what they currently enjoy, by using a Miraval-branded experience within their properties,” said Rudnitsky.

The Miraval Life in Balance Spa at Monarch Beach will offer 24 treatment rooms and 70 signature treatments; spa suites for couples; a nail salon featuring exclusive-to-Miraval nail treatments created by Deborah Lippmann; and a spa boutique.

Signature programming will be featured, including yoga, meditation and a quarterly wellness lecture series tailored to the resort’s oceanfront location and golf course. Miraval-inspired menu items will be available at the resort’s restaurants and Miraval Spa Café.

Spa membership, either through a resort social membership or dedicated spa membership, is crafted into the business plan.

Rudnitsky noted, however, the brand expansion goes beyond spa.

“We’ve had incredible success with the Tucson property, which is a desert experience, and what we want to do is find other destinations and work with existing owners and convert their respective destination resort or invest in that destination resort. So, if we have a desert experience in Tucson, we’re looking for a wine experience in Northern California or a mountain experience in Colorado or the Northeast or a beach experience in the Southeast. That’s the broad concept that we’re actively focused on and hopefully we [will be]making an announcement in the not-too-distant future on the next destination Miraval product,” the CEO said.

Stefani C. O’Connor