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Toledo Legal News - News Travel in style: Wellness tourism has become a $639 billion industry


The BodyHoliday is one of many luxury wellness retreats that have risen in popularity over the last few years.

"We designed this holiday over twenty years ago, long before the wellness industry had grown to the popularity seen today," the wellness resort located on Saint Lucia in the Caribbean region stated on its website. "A spa in a hotel was uncommon and often the perception of centers of well-being was of strange, cult-like institutions set high in the European Alps."

The resort offers yoga and meditation classes; tai chi, Pilates and other exercise classes.

It also offers tennis, sailing, water skiing, beach and pool volleyball, scuba and snorkeling, a morning hike, exercise classes, golf, fencing, a workout in the gym with a personal trainer and restorative beauty programs.

Wellness tourism is a $639 billion industry, Karen Warren writes in an article for Business Insider, citing a 2018 Global Wellness Tourism Economy study.

"Wealthy travelers are ditching the beach parties and all-night clubbing and instead spending their money on wellness summits, spirituality retreats and resorts that focus on self-care," she said.

Warren said the industry could be worth $919 billion by 2022.

She added: "Travelers are now paying $1,400 per night to stay at resorts with on-site therapists and spending more than $5,000 for weekend 'wellness summits.'"

Meanwhile, urban wellness resorts are becoming popular too, according to a report from the Global Wellness Summit.

It stated: "Even in the world's most crowded cities, people need a respite. It may seem counterintuitive to place a wellness hospitality property smack in the middle of a major metropolitan area. But the fact is, several of the world's top wellness brands are moving beyond their roots in idyllic locations to set up shop in big cities."

The July report noted that notable brands are opening locations in Tokyo, New York, Dubai, Hong Kong and Singapore.

"Wellness retreats will continue to open where the people (and affluence) are: cities. Consider: the urban population has grown from 751 million in 1950 to 4.2 billion in 2018-and the UN forecasts that it will rise by another 2.5 billion in 2050," the report stated. "More travelers will choose serene wellness destinations when they visit cities, and more people nearby will stay too: Not everyone can get to that remote island resort."

The new urban wellness resorts will be part hotel, part membership club and part wellness residence that will create a new kind of wellness community, according to the report.

BRANDON KLEIN, Daily Reporter Staff Writer

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