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ISPA 2006 Consumer Trends Report - Variations & Trends on the Consumer Spa Experience

The International SPA Association gave a peak at the results of their 2006 Consumer Trends Report at their Media Event on July 27, 2006. ISPA contracted The Hartman Group to conduct qualitative and quantitative research to gain greater understanding of spa going and non spa going consumers in the US and Canada. During the months of January through April 2006, For the qualitative research, The Hartman Group conducted in-home interviews, observation at spas and language analysis of 25 spa goers and 11 non spa goers in Seattle, Atlanta, Toronto and Vancouver. For the quantitative research, they conducted a telephone survey of 4,064 in Canada and the US and an online survey of 3,616 active spa goers in Canada and the US. An excerpt of study results presented at the event follow. The complete report will be available in November at the ISPA Conference & Expo.

The Size of the Spa World

  • 57 million US adults have been to a spa in their lifetimes
  • 32.2 million US and 3.7 million Canadian spa goers have been to a spa within the past 12 months
    • Slightly more than 1/10 of spa goers treat spa going as part of a larger health and wellness lifestyle rather than an indulgent habit
    • Slightly more than 1/3 of spa goers treat spa experiences as escapes and indulgent exercises
    • The majority of spa goers treat spa experiences as a mix of interests that vary from indulgence to healing work
  • 15% of US and 26% of Canadian spa goers started visiting spas within the past year

Top Reasons Why US Spa Goers Visit Spas

  • 47% Relieve stress
  • 46% Reduce stress
  • 38% Soothe sore joints/muscles
  • 31% Feel better about myself
  • 28% Mental/emotional health
  • 22% Improve my appearance
  • 19% Overall wellness

Average Male Spa Goers

  • 31% of all US spa goers are men
  • 29% of Canadian spa goers are men
  • Between 35 and 54 years old
  • Married
  • College Graduate
  • Earns between $75K-$149K
  • Has been visiting spas for 3-8 years
  • Has visited a Day Spa 2-3 times in the past 12 months
  • Most common treatment in the past 12 months: Full body massage

Average Female Spa Goers

  • Between 25 and 54 years old
  • Married
  • College Graduate
  • Earns between $50K-$149K
  • Has been visiting spas for 3-5 years
  • Has visited a Day Spa 2-3 times in the past 12 months
  • Most common treatment in the past 12 months: Full body massage

Top Services Experienced in the US in the Past Year

  • 84% (27.1 million) Full body massage
  • 48% (15.5 million) Manicure/pedicure
  • 46% (14.8 million) Facial
  • 21% (6.8 million) Movement classes
  • 20% (6.4 million) Body scrub or wrap
  • 12% (3.9 million) Hydrotherapy

Consumer Interest in Spa Types in the US

  • 36% Home visit spa (house call)
  • 28% Family-oriented spa
  • 20% Country club spa
  • 16% Airport spa
  • 13% Pet-friendly spa
  • 12% Male-only spa
  • 9% Prenatal spa

Spa Types Visited in the US in the Past Year

  • 77% (24.8 million) Day spa
  • 64% (20.6 million) Resort/Hotel spa
  • 21% (6.8 million) Cruise ship spa
  • 21% (6.8 million) Club spa
  • 15% (4.8 million) Destination spa
  • 13% (4.2 million) Mineral springs spa
  • 12% (3.9 million) Medical Spa

Consumer Perceptions of Spa Types

  • Day Spas
    • - serve as the spa archetyp against which all other spa types are compared
    • - their proliferation across urban areas result in multiple images in the minds of spa goers
    • Spa goers maintain an experimental approach to Day Spa going and want to see what else is out there
  • Destination Spas
    • Consumers use the terms Destination Spa and Resort Spa interchangeably
    • Inexperienced spa goers see life altering changes at Destination Spas
    • Experienced spa goers seek lifestyle tune-ups and exposure to latest trends at Destination Spas
  • Resort/Hotel Spas
    • Spa goers are drawn to indigenous treatments and practices at Resort/Hotel Spas
    • Outdoor treatments are especially alluring to vacationers for whom vaction means being outside
    • Business travelers want spa experiences that are removed from vacationers and vacation culture

Top Preferred Destinations for Future Spa Vacations for US Spa Goers

  • 68% USA
  • 31% Mexico/Caribbean
  • 25% Europe
  • 15% Canada
  • 10% Asia

Top Preferred Destinations for Future Spa Vacations for Canadian Spa Goers

  • 45% Canada
  • 39% Mexico/Caribbean
  • 30% USA
  • 24% Europe
  • 12% Asia
Trends in the Spa World
  • Spa goers are drawn to indigenous treatments and products, especially when traveling
    • Non spa goers are similarly drawn to indigenous products
  • The evolution of spa going men boosts demand for spa products and services designed specifically with men n mind
    • The demand for gender-specific products, especially male-only products, is strong
  • Evolving spa goers desire spa experiences customized to their personal needs and desires
  • Spa products are increasingly sought onlne
  • Spa going moms desire products and experiences designed for them and their babies
  • Many spa going "boomers" feel entitled to spa experiences

For the complete study, contact ISPA.

About ISPA
The International SPA Association is recognized worldwide as the leading professional organization and voice of the spa industry. Founded in 1991, ISPA’s membership is comprised of more than 2,500 health and wellness facilities and providers from 73 countries. ISPA strives to advance the professionalism of the spa industry by providing invaluable educational and networking opportunities, to promote the value of the spa experience to society, and to be the authoritative voice of the spa industry. For more information, please call 1.888.651.4772 or visit

Spas are entities devoted to enhancing overall well-being through a variety of professional services that encourage the renewal of mind, body and spirit.

About The Hartman Group, Inc.
Founded in 1989, The Hartman Group has led all US market research and consulting firms in uncovering why consumers shop and purchase wellness products and services - and what opportunities can be derived from these behaviors. For more information, please call 425-452-0818 or visit

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