Pulse May / June 2022 - Page 90

BALANCING HIGH DEMAND AND SPA RESOURCES

BY NELSON LANE
AS THE FIRST QUARTER OF 2022 WOUND DOWN , the ISPA Town Hall series returned to examine how the landscape of spa business is evolving and how challenges new and old are shaping operations at this stage of the industry ’ s pandemic recovery . Moderated by ISPA Chairman Patrick Huey , the panel discussion brought the ISPA community up to speed on tried and tested strategies for addressing increasingly widespread issues , including high demand and staffing shortages .
DEALING WITH HIGH DEMAND Though each panelist on the March Town Hall and the vast majority of spa professionals have experienced incredibly high levels of demand since COVID restrictions began to lift , Turning Stone Resort & Casino Director of Spa & EVS Operations Shane Bird is still amazed at the hunger for services .“ I was just looking yesterday to take a look at Saturday , because my wife had actually asked me if she could come [ to the spa ] with some friends . And I told her she could come in mid-May . So , if my wife can ’ t get in , you know we ’ re busy …. In the 23 years I ’ ve been doing this — and I ’ ve been in Vegas , Orlando and Phoenix , [ which are ] some big markets — I have never had to turn away as many guests as I have in the past two years .”
With demand for services at such a high level and actual service provider capacity often at critically low levels , each panelist noted the importance of sticking to a clearly established cancellation policy , which the Turning Stone team has optimized by utilizing an ever-growing waiting list to fill lastminute block openings .“ It doesn ’ t hurt us to have these blocks because we fill them with a waiting list the day of , so we ’ ve been … holding cancellations [ until ] the last minute ,” Bird explained .
Meanwhile , high demand has opened the door to increased revenue opportunities for 1 Hotel South Beach ’ s Director of Spa & Retail Alena Stavnjak , who gave dynamic pricing a try for “ about two weeks ” before increasing prices across the board due to guests ’ willingness to pay higher
72 PULSE • MAY / JUNE 2022