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Monday 19 March 2018
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09 Nov 2017
Russian Spa Congress shows market potential

Last week, almost 250 spa professionals gathered in the Caucasus thermal springs region of Russia for the 4th annual Spa & Wellness International Congress, or SWIC.

Organised by the Spa & Wellness International Council, headed by Elena Bogacheva, the congress presents a wide variety of speakers and topics for the Russian and Russian-speaking spa world.

The event served as the test for the soon-to-open Green Resort Hotel & Spa, perched on the hill above the river in Kislovodsk, one of four thermal cities in this part of Russia. The hotel is a well-designed and modern space that features a large spa and pool complex on the ground floor, overlooking a rose garden.

This year, 56 speakers made presentations over three days, covering topics including staff management, wellness tourism, psychology in spas and marketing.

According to the most recent Global Wellness Institute statistics, Russia ranks 8th in the world in the number of spas, with more than 3,000 locations, mostly in large cities, and is also 4th on the list of thermal spring areas, with over 800 establishments.

Because of visa and language issues, international tourism to Russia is flat, but domestic tourism is strong, with between 33-36 million annual travellers. According to the Russian Union of Travel Industry, domestic tourism is growing between 8 and 10 per cent a year.

The market is very interested in wellness tourism, and the Russian Ministry of Health reports that only 30 per cent of Russians have expressed satisfaction with foreign wellness visits, feeling that their home market provides a better experience.

The Russian Federation has a Strategy of Development of Tourism in place through the year 2020, in which they hope to improve the quality and competitiveness of their tourism products for both domestic and international visitors, indicating a growing opportunity in this region for spas and wellness-related businesses.

Some highlights from the myriad conference lectures included a presentation by Marion Schneider of Germany’s Toskana Therme on the economic effect of a therme, with her three current facilities providing a strong foundation for growth and tourism in their villages.

Gennady Bartukhin, president of the National Bath Federation, shared his organization's plans for a National Bath Museum in Moscow, and Gayane Suriakhina, director of La Salute Fitness Club & Spa, gave a detailed presentation on the best metrics to create revenue in a club spa.

Neurobiologist Dr Claudia Aguirre shared her findings on skin and beauty synergies with the brain, and local marketing guru Roman Tarasenko gave an SRO gallery ideas and examples for current successful marketing strategies.

A small expo with global and local brand and equipment sponsors including Thalgo, Comfort Zone, Sundari and Iyashi Dome was available for attendees to browse the latest in offerings from these companies, while demonstrations and spa treatments were available in the spa for further experience and participation throughout the conference.

The fourth day of the congress offered tours of local sanatoriums and some other cultural activities, and the evening culminated with the Perfect Spa Awards and Gala Dinner, which honoured local Russian spas across a variety of categories.

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15 Mar 2018
Jeff Kohl to receive ISPA Dedicated Contributor award
The International Spa Association (ISPA) will present Jeff Kohl, former chief operating officer of Spa & Club Ideations, with the 2018 ISPA Dedicated Contributor Award at the 28th annual ISPA Conference & Expo at the Phoenix Convention Center in Phoenix, US, set to take place 24-26 September.
13 Mar 2018
Wellness professionals gather for inaugural Women in Wellness Leadership Conference
On 6 March, two days before International Women’s Day, 230 wellness professionals from across the USA and beyond convened in New York City for the first-ever Women in Wellness Leadership Conference presented by American Spa magazine.
08 Mar 2018
RKF debuts luxury linen line with Paris fashion show
RKF Luxury Linen has debuted its new collection of high-end luxury linen wear with a fashion show in Paris.
08 Mar 2018
Attendances for women’s elite sport events set to break 500,000 barrier for first time
Women’s sport has never been more popular, as the number of spectators attending elite events in the UK is set to break the half-million barrier for the first time this year.
07 Mar 2018
Details confirmed for first ever FIBO USA event
Reed Exhibitions has confirmed the dates and venue for the first ever FIBO USA fitness trade show later this year.
02 Mar 2018
Global head of Miraval unveils plans for growth
Hyatt has plans to grow both Miraval and Exhale following its recent acquisition of the two wellness brands, with the hospitality giant investing another US$100m in Miraval by the end of this year, according to Marc Ellin, global head of Miraval Group, who spoke at the World Spa and Wellness Convention in London earlier this week.
01 Mar 2018
Matt Roberts reveals details of spa and fitness partnership at The Langley
London-based fitness entrepreneur, author and personal trainer Matt Roberts has called for a greater integration of spa and fitness in today’s holistic wellness space.
26 Feb 2018
Programme of speakers revealed for boutique fitness event Sweat
Daniel Macaulay, CEO of sports marketing group Brandwave, has been revealed as the keynote speaker at this year’s Sweat event, taking place on 8 March.
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Diary dates
15-19 Mar 2018
Cosmoprof Worldwide Bologna
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MuseumNext Australia
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Future of Museums: Collections
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2018 Asia VR&AR Fair & Summit (VR&AR Fair 2018)
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2018 China (Guangzhou) Int'l Game & Amusement Exhibition(CIAE)
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Dubai Entertainment Amusement and Leisure Show (DEAL)
Dubai World Trade Centre
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