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RESEARCH


US spa sector T


he 2012 US Spa Industry Study by the International Spa Association (ISPA) is based on more than 800 spa operators spanning all differ-


ent categories – from day, club and hotel/ resort spas to medical, destination and mineral spring spa facilities. It provides a profile of the US spa industry


throughout 2011 and also into the first half of 2012 and focuses on the industry’s per- formance as it kept pace with an economy still in gradual emergence from the reces- sion, and as spas adapted to an increasingly competitive marketplace where cost-con- scious consumers are shopping around.


Graph 1: Total spa revenue in the US (billions)


$14.0 $12.0 $10.0 $8.0 $6.0 $4.0 $2.0 $0.0


$12.8 $12.3 $12.8 $13.4 $10.9 $9.7 $7.7 $4.2


Resort/Hotel Other


1999 2001 2003 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 Source: ISPA 2012 US Spa Industry Study 13,470


0 3,000 6,000 9,000 12,000 15,000 11,359


Source: ISPA 2012 US Spa Industry Study $7.0 Medical 3,837 $9.4 Day All


7,538 7,864


Total revenues in US spas have surpassed the pre-recession peak according to the latest figures from ISPA’s 2012 US Spa Industry Study. Colin McIlheney reports


The report gauged the extent to which the industry has stabilised and experienced growth. This was measured by examining the change across five key indicators: rev- enues, spa visits, number of locations, floor space and staffing levels. To gain insight into recent and emerging trends, spa operators were asked about their experi- ences in the period of September 2011 to March 2012. Answers show that the gradual upward trajectory has continued from 2011. Survey questions also identified the


key challenges facing spas as they regain ground and the changes operators have made to ensure they stay competitive.


STEADY AND STABLE During 2011, the US spa industry continued to build on the moderate growth experi- enced in 2010 when business gradually picked up after the downturn and customer visits increased (see SB11/4 p38). All five key performance factors for the spa industry either grew or held steady compared to their 2010 performance. Total spa revenue for 2011 rose to US$13.4bn (€10.2bn, £8.7bn) – a 4.5 per cent increase on 2010 and a figure which has now sur- passed the pre-recession peak of US$12.8bn (€9.8bn, £8.3bn) achieved in 2008 (see Graph 1). This is an important milestone


Graph 2: average number of spa client visits per spa


106 spa business handbook 2013


www.spahandbook.com


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