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A Global Perspective

By: Abby Penning
Posted: October 17, 2008, from the November 2008 issue of Skin Inc. magazine.
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She also believes that the countries that offer the best service are the ones that are growing the most. “The luxury of the experience matched with the quality of the treatments in Dubai is phenomenal,” she enthuses. “And the service in India is just incredible, too.” This has helped these two locations grow to be spa giants in the world market, helping them garner some of the world’s top facilities, professionals, products lines and even clientele. “Other places just can’t match them,” Ariss explains. “People are going out of their way to visit spas in these places.”

The world scene

Different regions of the world are experiencing various phases of growth when it comes to the spa industry, each identifying their own resources and solutions, customer needs and cultural offerings that harmonize with the business of skin care and wellness. By covering the scene one piece at a time, Ariss brings attention to the regions of the world where the spa market is booming, places where it is on the verge of taking off and, finally, spots where spa has settled in as a solid market.

Booming business: The Middle East and Asia. With their rising population numbers and growing wealth, two of the largest markets for the spa industry are the Middle East and countries in Asia.

Examining nations such as the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia, Ariss says, “All of the Middle East is booming like crazy right now. Its countries’ economies are growing, and they have emerging countries, which are leading to a very large spa market.”

She identifies Dubai, a city in the United Arab Emirates, as the hot spot of the Middle East’s spa scene, noting its exquisite therapies, high-caliber service and reputation as a dazzling destination city. “People go to Dubai for many reasons—it’s the talk of the global market and everybody knows about it, so Dubai now is focusing on attracting people through tourism by offering luxury services through hotels, spas and other forms of recreation,” Ariss says. The spa scene in Dubai has developed as a model for the surrounding Middle Eastern nations, according to Ariss, because many other countries are following that city’s lead in looking to draw in wealthy travelers and businesspeople.