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COUNTRY FOCUS


S: THE MALDIVES


Flanked by a juice bar and boutique, the


entrance walkway, decorated with Asian bells marks the start of the spa journey, leading to six treatment villas – two sin- gles, four doubles – all with dressing rooms and showers. Meranti wood and Jordanian stone offer a cooling respite from the heat but for those who desire a connection to the outdoors, the villas have floor to ceiling glass doors with two extending out to external terraces. Additionally portholes beneath the Gharieni treatment beds afford a direct line of sight to the lagoon below. The two single villas are equipped with internal wet facilities – a Klafs Sanospa massage tub in one and Klafs Sanotherm heated water treatment tub in the other. The spa’s two-storey oceanfront


experience zone, including an open-air whirlpool, comprises some more unusual relaxation spaces. The sauna and steamrooms, for instance, can be coupled


60


There are six treatment villas in total (top); Klafs supplied the snow room (left) as well as the Cloud 9 multi-sensory pod (right)


Velaa’s reservations and revenue


with time in the Maldives’ first snow cabin where drinking water is cooled to -15°c. For an altogether different therapy, the spa is also equipped with Klafs’ Wolke 7 Cloud 9 – a multi-sensory cloud-like pod which uses vibration, colour and sound therapies to induce deep relaxation. The resort’s butlers are effective in high-


lighting the spa, dropping guests off for a tour and arranging treatments. Capture rate statistics are certainly healthy. In March, 37 per cent of resort guests had a treatment and Wyton also notes that the “spa’s revenue per occupied room – well over US$200 (€146, £119) – is considerably higher than the local average.”


manager Sandeep Thekkil says the focus in year one is “less on driving resort occupancy, rather on perfecting the product and delivery of experiences.” The spa seems to be playing its part – one gentleman who’s well known in the music industry made 11 repeat visits during his two-week stay. In order to meet the discerning tastes of the travellers whose pockets are deep enough to afford a stay here, Velaa will need to continue setting these highest of standards. l To read a first-person experience of Velaa, and an interview with Clarins’ spa development manager Morgan Lefrançois, see p62.


Neena Dhillon is a spa, hotel and travel journalist Email: ndhillon@ spabusiness.com


Read Spa Business online spabusiness.com / digital Spa Business 3 2014 ©Cybertrek 2014


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