Pulse November / December 2022 - Page 30

HOME IS WHERE THE SPA IS : The Rise of Residental Spas in Luxury Living CONTINUED FROM PAGE 26

“[ Residents ] want convenient access to fitness facilities and wellbeing experiences that help them live their best life whether they are living in that city year-round or visiting a second or third home .”

What spa services do residential spas offer ?
l One or more treatment rooms for massage ( facials are not popular ) l Locker rooms , with or without steam / sauna l Hair salon ( staffed ) l On-demand , non-staffed salon areas l Salt rooms l Cryotherapy and hyperbaric chambers l Aquatics programs and indoor pool l Classroom space for events l Yoga , Pilates , sound bowl healing , silent disco l Medical partners for aesthetics and functional medicine l Private wellness suites
The Challenges Operating a luxury spa as a loss leader for the global elite is not an easy task . For properties like Mandarin Oriental and Auberge Beach , the mix of clientele allows the spa to run profitably . For the majority catering exclusively to residents and beholden to HOA whims , things get more complicated and require the expertise of a management company to overcome staffing and operational challenges .
Wellness facilities aside , the therapists make the magic . Mandarin Oriental , Arch Amenities and LIVunLtd borrow staff from other managed properties nearby on an on-call basis and for special events or activities . LIV partners with Zeel to deploy therapists , and Arch leverages technology to match clients with the service and therapist of their choice . “ We let our residents know , for example , that this Saturday we will be inviting a special therapist to London from the Mandarin Oriental in Miami , or we will bring celebrity wellness practitioners to do special events and activities for our residents ,” says McCarthy .
“ We do shuttle services where we send employees over to residences that have a couple of treatment rooms but no built-out spa and front desk ,” says Warren .
Developers and HOAs most often rely on experienced management companies to sort through the complexities of operating a spa . Delivering massage therapy services , for example , can be challenging from both a zoning and a licensing standpoint . Every state has its own laws regarding the regulation of massage . Some states prohibit massage in a residentially zoned building , for example . Other states allow massage , but only for the occupants of the building .
New Developments Up the Ante Look for new developments to up the ante for spa services and wellness amenities . LIVunLtd client Waterline Square , a five-acre , $ 2.3 billion luxury condominium and rental development located on the Upper West Side of New York City , boasts 100,000 square feet of amenity space . The $ 200 a month membership fee turns the amenity space into a revenue center .
The new Aman New York marks the luxury hotel company ’ s foray into lifestyle . The new project combines hotel suites with 22 condos — ranging in price from around $ 5.9 million to $ 75 million — and has a membership club with an initiation fee of $ 200,000 . Wellness amenities include spa suites — apartment-like spaces complete with bedrooms and dining areas where small groups or couples can share a half- or full-day experience that revolves around a Moroccan hammam or Eastern European banya , hot and cold outdoor plunge pools — set on a private garden terrace with a retractable roof , plus custom lunch menus and add-on massages . Cost : $ 8,500 for two for the full day . n
NANCY GRIFFIN , MMH , is the principal of Contento Marketing and host of the Glowing Older podcast . She has a Master of Management in Hospitality from Cornell University , and is a recognized wellness and hospitality expert .
28 PULSE n NOVEMBER / DECEMBER 2022