Spa Business Handbook 2020-2021

Page 158


Regulations and guidelines l To access the UK government COVID-safety guidelines for close contact services – including spas – click here: l Read the UK Spa Association’s COVID-19 Reopening Guidelines:

New perspectives Surveys from the UK Spa Association and Good Spa Guide gave the country’s operators valuable industry and consumer insights. We examine how they’re helping spas to reopen in a much-changed, post-lockdown world


fter nearly four frustrating months, spas across the UK were legally allowed to reopen on 13 July, 2020 – a positive move for the nation’s 3,500-plus facilities that make up the seventh largest spa market in the world (according to the 2018 Global Wellness Economy Monitor).

But the reopening was short-lived; in November, a second nationwide lockdown forced spas to close their doors once again. They reopened at the beginning of December, but the country was soon rushed into various states of lockdown as a new variant of COVID-19 saw cases rising quickly. By January, 2021, the

UK was in its third full lockdown, and spas were closed once again. As of press time, the word is that this could last until at March. It’s difficult for spas to know how to plan for the future with things changing so quickly, but earlier in the pandemic, two respected organisations – the UK Spa Association (UKSA) and spa-goer-focused Good Spa Guide – co-ordinated efforts to canvass both industry and consumer expectations to get a clearer idea of the lay of the land. Spa Business analysed the findings to pinpoint the potential challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.

courtesy of Carden Park

Returning to spas

The Spa at Carden Park reopened on 25 July, 2020 and has put extensive safety measures in place

158 spa business HANDBOOK 2020 – 2021

The good news is that there are strong indications that the UK will experience the same trend for pent-up spa demand that’s happening elsewhere in the world. In its CV-19 Spa Report, based on a survey of 5,000 spa-goers in May 2020, the Good Spa Guide found that people said they’ll go back to spas as soon as they reopen (48 per cent) or within a couple of months (36 per cent). The core market, aged 46-60, are reportedly the most confident to return, and overall 6 per cent of respondents plan to visit