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Spa Director Rountable

September 28, 2012 | 6:44 AM
As the year comes to a close, you’re probably well entrenched in your plans for 2008: what services to tweak, which skin care products to add, or even which part of your spa needs a complete overhaul. You’re not alone either—spa directors across the country are facing the same issues you are and working to make 2008 their most profitable year ever. Here’s how some top spas are evolving now and in the year to come.

Services added in 2007:
•Brenna Dubs, spa director, Haven, New York, New York: Our spa focuses on offering results-oriented skin care for the face and the body, so most of our new treatments are esthetically based. We created a new, powerful anti-aging facial called Rehab that lifts, tightens and improves the skin’s clarity, elasticity and texture. It also encourages detoxification and cellular renewal. We use enzymatic exfoliants in a dramatic triple layer mask to generate maximum results. The service lasts 75 minutes and costs $175.

We also added two new body skin care treatments: the Peach Smoothie (bikini area) and the Baby’s Bottom. In these treatments, we gently cleanse each area with a special exfoliating AHA scrub, followed by an expert application of a customized acid peel to help free trapped hairs and blocked pores, and reduce unbecoming bumps.

•Lesley Gordillo, spa manager, The Spa at Doral, Miami, Florida: We added Ashiatsu, as well as a service called Awaken, which is a citrus mango body scrub and massage (citrus mango is our signature scent), and we added ice cream pedicures.

•Jacqueline Lajoie, chief operations and marketing officer, Daireds Salon & Spa Pangea, Arlington, Texas: We added the Herbal Poultice Massage used for many centuries in Thailand, which incorporates a bolus bag made of unbleached cotton and filled with a blend of herbs including plai, ginger, turmeric and cumin. Used by the massage therapist along with deep pressure, this massage releases blocked energy and increases awareness and vitality. A stress-relieving and deeply relaxing body treatment, the herbs soften and nourish the skin by exfoliating, while soothing the underlying connective tissue to relieve painful inflammations and bruises.

Other additions include an Anti-Aging Hand Treatment, Anti-Aging Foot Treatment and seasonal pedicures.

Catering to clients:
•BD: Our clients have been asking for visible results. They are coming to the spa with specific requests: to reduce the appearance of fine lines, to treat acne or clogged pores, to even out hyperpigmentation, to firm and tighten their skin, etc. Our staff is constantly on the lookout for action-
oriented professional products to use in the treatment rooms, as well as powerful home care products to recommend for daily use. We want to have products on our shelves and in our treatment rooms that are worth every penny that our clients are spending on them.
•LG: Clients have been asking for more Ayurvedic and natural/organic services. In addition, next year we are eliminating 25-minute services. We want our clients to relax, unwind and have a true spa experience. This cannot be accomplished in 25 minutes!
•JL: During 2007, we’ve focused on enhancing the spa experience for every guest through attention to detail and by upgrading our amenities. Upon arrival, each guest now receives a refreshing warm/cold (seasonal) towel infused with essential oil to promote relaxation, along with fresh lemongrass herbal tea to enjoy while relaxing before his or her treatments. Flower bowls have been placed under the face cradle in all massage rooms and a cleansing foot ritual has been added to the Daireds Pangea Swedish Massage.

Biggest current spa trend:
•BD: Esthetic home care products from skin care lines such as Skinceuticals, Skin Medica, and Plum are offering newer products that work to correct problems and directly impact the health of the skin. In the past it has been frustrating for talented estheticians to make dramatic progress during in-spa monthly facial treatments, but have inadequate home care products set back all that progress by overdrying the skin, inflaming active acne, and/or not properly protecting the skin between in-spa treatments. Being able to now put together a regimen, combining results-oriented spa treatments with powerful home care products, is allowing our staff a chance to achieve our clients’ skin care goals.
•LG: Social spa-ing. This fall, we began holding a new spa event, with martinis and manicures, bubbles and blow dries.
•JL: The demand for anti-aging treatments is definitely the biggest trend we’ve noticed. Our guests are seeking more treatments that offer fast results with lasting effects.

New services for 2008:
•BD: We are looking into newer ways to exfoliate the skin without causing excess inflammation. We are also learning more about the biological factors that lead to aging, such as free radicals, the inflammation cascade, and human growth factors.
•LG: We will be offering Ayurvedic wraps and massage by Sundari, as well as organic massages.
•JL: We’re planning enhancements to our Med Spa services, starting with the addition of upgraded laser equipment and a facilities expansion of 3,000 square feet, providing additional Med Spa treatment rooms, an additional Vichy shower and two additional couples massage rooms. We’ll continue to seek results-oriented, anti-aging and med spa treatments to expand our menu of services.

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