‘Wired wellness,’ hot springs among top 2014 spa trends

Spafinder Wellness 365 has released its annual report of the top 10 spa and wellness trends worldwide.

The report is based on ongoing surveys of the 20,000-plus spa, wellness and beauty providers in the Spafinder Wellness 365 network.

The top global spa and wellness trends for 2014 include:

1. Healthy hotels 2.0

In 2014 “healthy hotels” will become a megatrend fulfilling the demand for restorative travel and helping people stay well on the road. Look for hotels to move from healthy as a marketing differentiator to deeper, more multi-faceted and comprehensive programming.

2. Wired wellness

For some, connecting the words “wired” and “wellness” is counterintuitive, but today there are hundreds of fitness apps out there to help individuals get in shape, get healthy and keep fitness goals on track.

3. Hot springs heat up

With thermal springs existing in virtually every corner of the world, governments and developers are funding hundreds of new projects globally.

4. Suspending gravity

There are more weightless stress and mind-melting flotation tanks, chambers and pools at spas. On the fitness front, there is a global craze for aerial and anti-gravity classes and yoga along with new equipment like anti-gravity treadmills.

5. Ferocious fitness

Ferocious fitness is on the rise, led by people who seriously train for competitions or want to establish their own personal best, often with high-intensity interval training with shorter timeframes.

6. Natural beauty meets social media

With the growing popularity of social media and “selfies,” people are expected to look their best 24/7 — without the benefit of makeup and blowouts. In 2014, a new clean-beauty era takes shape focusing on the natural and introducing a high-tech, low-risk beauty. Spas will promote this via organic products, science and technology intersecting to deliver results with minimal downtime that are seemingly produced by nature.

7. Aromatherapy: Scent with intent

As aromatherapy plays a greater role in the treatment of physical and mental issues, spas have been motivated to reimagine their approach to craft aromatherapies with intended effects. Spas are now moving away from the generically pleasant treatments and working in tandem with botanists and digital technology to improve effectiveness.

8. Wellness retreats rise and urbanize

Look for exciting movement on the destination spa front. A distinct sub-trend is also emerging: the urban wellness retreat. More destination spas will be reachable by car and train.

9. Death and spas: Thriving during life’s transitions

As baby boomers start thinking seriously about aging and death, spas are helping clients tackle the changes, challenges and choices that come with dying. Spas are also helping people address other life challenges like divorce, illness and job loss.

10. Surprising spa and wellness destinations

Savvy spa-goers and wellness seekers are searching for more exotic destinations and indigenous experiences. In 2014, look for an emergence of new travel destinations in countries like Bhutan, Ghana and Nicaragua.