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Thursday 30 November 2023
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06 Nov 2023
Largest-ever Spa China Summit welcomes global attendees to Manchuria

The 15th annual Spa China Summit was recently held at the Ritz-Carlton in the northern Chinese city of Harbin.

Organised by Spa China magazine founder, director and editor-in-chief Fifi Kao and her team, the annual summit aims to promote the spa and wellness industry throughout China by providing education and thought leadership for regional owners and operators.

Spa Business’ contributing editor Lisa Starr has rounded up her key takeaways from the industry event.

An overview of Spa China 2023
Hosted over three days, Spa China attracted 400 attendees with its schedule of 20 presentations and panels. Topics debated ranged from current and future trends to retailing, marketing and advancements in treatment protocols.

The summit was attended by operators, product houses, doctors, spa consultants and more.

Brands in attendance included Mandara Spa, Intraceuticals, Phytomer, Swissline, Natura Bissé and Mandarin Oriental, as well as Accor, Finn Partners, Herbaline Facial Spa, La Mer, Four Seasons and more.

Hot new trends
Kao opened the proceedings with a summation of the current business climate in China, where she indicated that it is not all that different from other regions of the world.

Continued interest in maintaining personal health, along with a desire for personalised experiences and established global brands are driving consumer behaviour.

Spa China surveyed Chinese consumers, and the shared results showed an interest from consumers in eco-wellness, tech-based wellness and mental wellness solutions, as well as menopause-related programmes, pain management, gut health, brain fatigue and nutrition.

Caution around spending, an increase in wealth inequality and less impulsive spending are also features of the current consumer mindset.

The Chinese wellness traveller
Jenny Lo, managing partner of Finn Partners Hong Kong, shared current trends seen among Chinese travellers and wellness enthusiasts, similar to those heard across the globe: interests in a slower pace; solo travel; sustainability; and opportunities to be in nature.

Consumer expectations and needs
A panel of global suppliers discussed product trends and challenges in the Chinese market, which included having to adapt both their products and approach based on the size and speed of the market which is unequalled in other parts of the world.

They concluded that Chinese consumers are bright and also early adopters, and expect a lot of innovation. However, product claims need to be backed up with clear evidence.

Grace Wu, general manager of Le Bonta Wellness Co, shared that Chinese consumers are seeking practicality, quality and cost-effectiveness more now than in the recent past, and additional essential factors in choice were convenience of transportation followed by service selection and price.

Creating new relationships
Networking opportunities were plentiful at the summit thanks to cocktail parties, multiple tea breaks, morning yoga, meditation and running classes and the annual Gala dinner.

Sponsored as always by Kohler China, the gala dinner saw 40 award winners from China and surrounding areas rewarded for their innovation. Categories included Best Spa Facility, Best Organic Product, Best Eco Treatment of the Year and Most Creative Body Treatment, among others.

The summit also included an expo where 44 brands – both global and Chinese – provided stands and showrooms to showcase their latest innovations in products, equipment and experiences.

It is clear that the spa and wellness industry is continuing to flourish in China, as consumers there seek the same personal wellness goals as those in the rest of the world, and the China spa market is mature and polished enough to deliver.

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27 Nov 2023
Good Spa Guide Awards announces Britain’s top regional spas of 2023
Spas from nine regions across the UK, from Scotland to the West Country, have won accolades in the Regional Good Spa Guide (GSG) Awards 2023.
14 Nov 2023
Echelon Fitness teams up with Run Disney to tap into 170,000 runners
Connected fitness equipment supplier, Echelon, has signed a multi-year deal with Run Disney, the road race division of Disney Sports Enterprises.
13 Nov 2023
Scotland named 2024 Global Wellness Summit host destination
Annual industry event, the Global Wellness Summit (GWS), is headed to the Scottish coastal town of St Andrews in 2024.
08 Nov 2023
GWS celebrates Simone Biles with Debra Simon Award for excellence in mental wellbeing
The Global Wellness Summit (GWS) has honoured legendary gymnast Simone Biles with the 2023 Debra Simon Award.
07 Nov 2023
Global wellness economy reaches record-breaking $5.6trn – predicted to hit $8.5trn by 2027
The global wellness economy will be worth US$8.5 trillion by 2027, according to new research unveiled by the Global Wellness Institute (GWI).
27 Oct 2023
ukactive Awards winners revealed as sector unites in Leeds for a night of celebration
The top operators, suppliers and facilities from across the physical activity sector were celebrated last night (26 October), as the winners of the prestigious ukactive Awards 2023 were announced at the Royal Armouries in Leeds.
18 Oct 2023
Great Spa Towns of Europe Association hosts general assembly in Montecatini Terme
The Italian thermal town of Montecatini Terme will welcome 30 delegates from the Great Spa Towns of Europe Association (GSTEA) this week when it hosts the association’s third general assembly of 2023.
16 Oct 2023
2023 Global Wellness Summit relocates to Miami due to Middle East conflict
The Global Wellness Summit (GWS) has switched locations from Qatar to Miami in light of the geo-political crisis in the Middle East.
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