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PHOTO: ©NACHO ALEGRE

Matteo Thun founder, Matteo Thun & Partners

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tringent hygiene and generous space will be a top priority for interior spa design. Besides private treatment rooms, the layout of high-traffic social spaces will be revisited in terms of proportions that allow for social distancing and an intuitive access to sanitisers and wash basins throughout the design. The size, location and ventilation of spaces will become critical considerations in keeping guests safe and healthy, with state-of-the-art air purifiers integrated into and hidden within the architecture. Immune-boosting features will become a focal point, and we’ll see the introduction of innovative treatments and

Immune-boosting features will become a focal point... Virtuality will direct our lives and we’ll use technology to do most things we used to do in person

superfoods in F&B packages in hotels. Virtuality will direct our lives, and we will use technology to do most things we used to do in person. We must now bring in safetyconscious procedures that will involve modifying layouts to include personal distancing and the need for modularity

and flexibility resulting from it, with thermo scanners, touch-free doors and surfaces, sanitised air conditioning units, more indoor greenery, sealed flooring, walls and ceilings, and so much more. In the current and future scenario, the focus on one’s inner self will be of high importance in order to nurture and stimulate inner peace rather than social interactions. A warm and

humane atmosphere will and can be easily conveyed through natural materials, lush indoor air purifying greenery and of course, timelessness. ■■Known for his wellbeing approach, Matteo Thun set up his architecture and design studio in 1984. The Milan-based firm works internationally in hospitality, healthcare, residential, office and retail sectors. www.matteothun.com

Claire Way managing director, Spa Strategy

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e’re at the beginning of a new juncture of disease and design, where confidence controls what kind of space we want to be in. Physical spacing and sanitisation will drive the design of wellness spaces moving forward. Where development budgets once allocated more to the aesthetics of the space and less to how the mechanics of it could improve health, in a post-COVID-19 world, these less visually appealing items will demand a larger slice of the budget. HVAC systems with individual controls that ensure air is separate from other rooms will become the norm, limiting cross contamination. Innovation in material finishes will be sought from the medical field, where developments in antimicrobial surfaces such

Material finishes will be sought from the medical field – think antimicrobial copper-laced flooring and silver compounds with antiviral properties

as copper-laced flooring and the use of silver compounds will continue to inspire new innovations that also offer antiviral properties. One such potential development from Manchester University in the UK uses sugar to create a broad-spectrum virucidal antiviral. This is currently being considered as an ingestible or topical application, but who knows what direction this

innovation could take; sugar, long seen as the enemy in wellness, could provide a non-toxic antiviral solution. Adoption of technologies such as RFID-activated doors and lockers, sensor-activated taps and hand dryers, and voiceactivated lighting will become standard. Carpets and window coverings will be eliminated in favour of hard surfaces that are easy to clean. And genderspecific hydrothermal spaces in the changing rooms will give way to larger, co-ed areas that move guests into a space that allows for easier management of physical spacing.

Finally, there’s been much talk about biophilic design and moving towards an integrated wellness offering throughout the hotel, spa and exterior spaces. Now is the time to embrace this movement. Spa design of the future needs to be more adaptive and resilient to ensure the business model can accommodate the unknowns before us. ■■Claire Way leads Spa Strategy’s extensive work in the strategic planning, programming and design of spas worldwide. www.spastrategy.net

spabusiness.com issue 3 2020 35

Profile for Leisure Media

Spa Business issue 3 2020  

Spa Business issue 3 2020