Impact of cultural traditions on spa trends

Updated: November 04, 2014 2:50 PM

This year’s ISPA Media Event in New York witnessed spas from around the world exhibiting their latest treatments most of which have emerged from historic customs Cultural traditions are deeply rooted in many countries’ language, religion, food and art. Some of these traditions were apparent at the recent ISPA 2014 Media Event held in New […]

This year’s ISPA Media Event in New York witnessed spas from around the world exhibiting their latest treatments most of which have emerged from historic customs

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Cultural traditions are deeply rooted in many countries’ language, religion, food and art. Some of these traditions were apparent at the recent ISPA 2014 Media Event held in New York. Spas from around the world highlighted their newest treatments, many of which stemmed from historic customs. “It is important to remember that spas are not only committed to physical renewal, but also that of the mind and spirit. Spas are dedicated to the restoration of the whole person. At this year’s ISPA Media Event we see spas incorporating all components of this shared mission, by way of cultural touches, into their spa experiences,” stated Lynne McNees, president, ISPA.

Unique healing techniques and religious practices are often defining cultural characteristics. At the ISPA 2014 Media Event, spa properties founded in distinct cultural traditions showcased treatments that draw inspiration from these native rituals.

  • Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group tapped into their roots by offering Chinese medicine inspired Calm Mind Guided Meditation, to offer calm mind therapy
  • Mii amo offered Hozhooji, the Mii amo Blessing, which uses a turquoise clay in massage therapy to reduce stress and awaken positive energies within the body, mind, soul and spirit
  • Mukul Beach, Golf & Spa shared the healing power of Nicaraguan volcanic clay used as a body mask in their six spa sanctuaries treatment
  • Omni Hotels and Resorts demonstrated their Grove Stone Healing Hand Treatment, keeping the historic tradition of massage fresh Food is a simple way to bring people together to share in a culture.

At this year’s ISPA Media Event, many spas used food as means of tying a native tradition to a classic treatment:

  • Massage Envy Spa treated guests to a spa cuisine, Sugar Foot Therapy
  • Mayo Clinic Healthy Living Programme discussed the link between diet and overall health and showed that healthy cooking is easy with a healthy food prep demonstration
  • Miraval Resort & Spa gifted their new cookbook, Miraval’s Sweet & Savory Cooking, to attendees
  • Rancho La Puerta’s Salsa y Salsa combined a salsa tasting and a salsa dancing class offering a peek into what guests can experience at their property
  • The Essex Resort and Spa mixed up a refreshing summer treat for the media with their Watermelon Vodka-tini Hand Treatment
  • The Lodge at Woodloch partnered with Dogfish Head Brewery to create beer-inspired spa treatments
  • The Spa at the Hotel Hershey incorporated their signature ingredients into their Chocolate Spa Eye Refresh treatment
  • Travaasa Experiential Resorts demonstrated their Blender Bike which channels physical energy created during a workout to power a blender for a fresh smoothie

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Water is a founding component of the spa industry. Many exhibiting spas at this year’s event tied this element into native and water-based practices:

  • Aspira Spa showcased their Sacred Water Massage and discussed how indigenous traditions can inspire spa experiences
  • Jason Hydrotherapy offered their MicroSilk treatment, an oxygenated bath that benefits the skin
  • The Spa of the Rockies demonstrated their Mineral Spring Water Therapy that showcased the property’s 125 year history of mineral-based treatments

A healthy body is encouraged as part of an overall healthy mind, body, and spirit. These companies showed attendees the latest trends in keeping the body healthy:

  • Hilton Head Health showed how one can perform MyoFascial Release techniques on themselves
  • Matrix Fitness showcased their 7xi Console, equipment that allows you to be connected while exercising
  • Tiger Tail USA demonstrated their signature Tiger Tail, a hand held rolling device designed to roll over muscles, relieving soreness and tension

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