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HUMAN NATURE Post-lockdown, safety and nature are ranked as extremely important by consumers. Anne Dimon reports on the latest findings from the Wellness Tourism Association...


s travel resumes, personal health is set to be a priority. More people have come to realise the value of their health and want to be more proactive in looking after themselves. The key question for the Wellness Tourism Association’s (WTA) 2021 Wellness Travel Consumer Survey was what do wellness-minded consumers consider their top priorities? This is the third survey since the WTA launched in 2018 and the aim was to give spa and wellness operators and the hospitality industry a clearer understanding of consumers’ priorities as they plan their travels.


Happily, members of the WTA are reporting business is looking up. According to Kimberly Rossi, director of wellness and business development at the Art of Living Retreat Center in North Carolina, there has been a steady stream of visitors since reopening in April 2021: “People are ready – more than ever – to explore, be in community, and practice radical self-care.” Some are running at higher capacity and charging more than pre-Covid. “In some segments, we’re running more than a 20 per cent increase in guest and room rates over 2020 and 2019,” says Denise Perkins, VP of marketing at Strata Wellness at The Garden of the Gods Resort and Club in Colorado. Marina Oshchepkova at Bürgenstock Hotels says the Healthy by Nature wellness concept, launched in 2019 at the Waldhotel in Switzerland, welcomed three times as many guests between January and September of 2021.


An interest in regenerative travel is driving demand

Business improving