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Hotels turning to spas to make a splash with business and corporate guests

By Peter Ruddick , 24-Jul-2012
Last updated on 24-Jul-2012 at 15:36 GMT2012-07-24T15:36:31Z

Ruthin Castle hotel in North Wales has relaunched its spas as The Moat - a number of operators are turning to spas to increase bookings from corporate and international guests

Ruthin Castle hotel in North Wales has relaunched its spas as The Moat - a number of operators are turning to spas to increase bookings from corporate and international guests

A number of hoteliers are introducing or improving spas at their hotels to entice corporate and international guests as a new report suggests more than a third of people booking a hotel see the presence of a spa as a key decision in their choice.

The latest Hilton Blue Paper from global operator Hilton Hotels & Resorts surveyed 6,000 guests from Great Britain and other countries in the Hilton Worldwide portfolio.

It found 69 per cent of all travellers were at least somewhat likely to visit the spa in the hotel they were staying at. Nearly 40 per cent of respondents from GB said a spa was at least a somewhat important factor when making a booking.

Crucially the report found international visitors, particularly those from China and Australia, saw a hotel having a spa as important and the trend for business travellers demanding one was also growing.

Corporate bookings

QHotels has this week announced it is investing £170k in a refurb of the spa at the Stratford Manor hotel after an increase in interest from corporate guests. The Stratford-Upon-Avon property is introducing new treatment rooms, products and improved leisure facilities, changing rooms and showers.

The management at the hotel will also be creating new roles as a result of the refurb, including a spa supervisor.

"Demand for quality spa facilities for corporate bookings has increased massively over the past few years," Keith Turnbull, general manager at Stratford Manor, said.

"We’ve responded to this by investing a massive £170k into new spa treatment rooms and leisure facilities. Corporate bookers are telling us that these facilities are increasingly important to both business guests and residential conference delegates – it’s all about supporting a healthy approach to work."

Water treatments

QHotels' belief in the increasing importance of spas to business bookers is backed up by the Hilton report which suggests the trend is driven by the demand for 'blended travel' - a mix of meetings and corporate activity balanced with relaxation.

Hilton Worldwide, which operates the expanding eforea: Spa at Hilton concept in eleven locations around the world, said consistent offerings were important for global chains.

The report concluded hotel spa use would increase with local membership schemes and said water treatments were growing in popularity in Great Britain.

Making a splash: Recent developments in hotel spas: