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Amanda Al-Masri: Modern wellness travellers prioritise nature, sense of place and 360° wellness touchpoints

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As more people crave connection with each other and the world around them, today’s wellness experiences should evolve to reflect this mindset
Credit: Hilton

Hilton’s 2023 Trends Report reveals travellers are focusing on more engaging experiences and enhanced wellness offerings.

In the 2023 Spa Business Handbook, Hilton’s vice president of wellness Amanda Al-Masri outlines how wellness professionals can prepare to meet these evolving needs.

1. Deliver wellness across the stay experience

With a growing number of wellness-minded travellers and an ever-expanding definition of “wellness”, there is a rich opportunity for hotel teams to develop holistic offerings that meet guests where they are in their wellness journey and that allow them to continue their routines while on the road.

For most guests on most days, wellness is defined as a collection of the small decisions they make or actions they take, such as sleep, movement, mindfulness and nutrition. Think about the ways that you can enhance these small moments through various touchpoints throughout their stay experience – both in non-traditional areas, like the guest room or lobby, as well as in more traditional venues, such as spas and fitness centres.

One of our newest brands, Tempo by Hilton, for example, thoughtfully designs its guestrooms in zones, including a Get Ready zone – featuring a spacious bathroom with Bluetooth speakers and bath amenities by Apotheke – and provides Power Down amenities designed to help guests get a restful night’s sleep.

2. Connect travellers with the destination As more people crave connection with each other and the world around them, today’s wellness experiences should evolve to reflect this mindset.

For example, in Bali, guests can celebrate the Purnama full moon every 28 days at Conrad Bali, which offers both a spiritual and physical experience.

During the full moon, guests participate in a meditation session on the beach with a Melukat spiritual purification, just as the Balinese have done for nearly 5,000 years. This communal Balinese cleansing ritual connects guests with locals while purifying their bodies to allow for luck and happiness to enter.

By featuring special programmes like these, operators can fully captivate their clients with local customs and products and provide the connections they are seeking.

3. Facilitate guest engagement with nature

Nothing is more transformative than time spent in nature and Hiton’s survey findings uncovered travellers’ increasing desire to connect with the outdoors.

Wellness offerings often have the opportunity to incorporate nature into programming in various ways. This can be part of the built environment – such as spaces that seamlessly transition between indoors and outdoors.

However, this can also include services and offerings that engage directly with nature.

For example, the Tierra Luna Spa & Sol Garden at Arizona Biltmore, a Waldorf Astoria Resort, provides spaces dedicated to Earth’s four elements in its indoor and outdoor relaxation spaces and treatment rooms.

The spa also employs an astrologist to provide readings during services and source local botanicals, indigenous muds, native scents and healing crystals.

As consumer preferences continue to shift, spa professionals must rise to the challenge to deliver on evolving guest expectations. By continuing to keep a pulse on what guests are looking for and creating immersive, unique and community-connecting treatments and services, guests from around the world will feel right at home.

Check out the 2023 Spa Business Handbook for more thought leadership from leading industry figures such as Emlyn Brown (Accor), Robbie Hammond (Therme Group), Jeremy McCarthy (Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group) and Marina Efraimoglou (Euphoria Retreat).

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Amanda Al-Masri joins Hilton as vice-president of wellness

19 Jan 2023
Spa industry veteran Amanda Al-Masri is heading up Hilton Hotels & Resorts’ wellness division as ...
Hilton’s 2023 Trends Report reveals travellers are focusing on more engaging experiences and enhanced wellness offerings.
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