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Ringing in New Spa Trends for 2019

Towel on fern with candles and black hot stone on wooden background

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Salt, Arctic Cryotherapy, Virtual Reality and Pre-flight Spa-ing Top the Charts as What to Expect at Your Next Visit to the Spa.

What better way to ring in 2019 than treating yourself to one of the hot trends in the world of spa-ing to relax after surviving holiday parties, in-laws and the crowds at Bloomingdales. Here are the top five spa trends our experts expect to take 2019 by storm.

Hyatt Salt Room

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Salt
Salt not only flavors your food, it can spice up your spa time as well. For a few years, spas have been adding salt rooms, salt beds and salt lamps, and now salt stones are replacing basalt stones in the popular stone massages many spas offer, and you’ll find salt manis and pedis.

Halotherapy (salt therapy) has been used for centuries as a cure for respiratory issues. The negative ions in salt help people breathe easier, and salt is shown to have a calming and detoxifying effect that improves mood while the moisturizing properties in pure mineral salts can help to get glowing skin. The concentration of particles in a salt room is so strong, sitting in one for 45 minutes is equivalent to spending three days seaside.

Photo by Juta/Shutterstock

“Negative charged ions in salt therapy provide tremendous health benefits for respiratory and skin conditions,” said Michael Tompkins, former International Spa Association Chairman and owner of Hutchinson Consulting. “In spa, where skin is one of our primary lines of business, every spa should be considering adding salt to further aid in their guests well-being.”

Hyatt Regency Scottsdale

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Where to Try Halotherapy:
Joya Spa at the Omni Montelucia Resort & Spa in Paradise Valley, Arizona launches its Himalayan Salt Stone Massage this month. The stones were created when the Primal Sea dried up. The stones compressed for millions of years and today contain 84 essential nutrients and minerals that add to the therapeutic benefit of the massage. At Spa Gregories, try a Lavender & Sea Salt manicure or pedicure. Spa Avania at the Hyatt Gainey Ranch in Scottsdale and Palm Health in St. Louis both offer salt inhalation rooms. A new hotel chain called Salt just opened its first hotel and salt spa on Mauritius, an island-nation in the Indian Ocean. All treatments are salt based.

Photo by Jacob Lund/Shutterstock

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Cryotherapy
As arctic air blasts the country, it’s hard to imagine willingly subjecting yourself to temperatures 150-300 below zero, yet cryotherapy’s popularity continues to surge. Originally used by athletes for recovery, cryotherapy has found its way into the spa for its reported benefits of reducing pain, removing toxins, rejuvenating cells and reducing cellulite and fat. Spas offer full-body treatments, which involves being in a cryotherapy chamber for about one to three minutes and cryofacials.

“I think the trend for 2019 is more spas are adding cryofacials that are really replacing some of the med spas more invasive treatments,” said Carol Stratford, partner at Hutchinson Consulting. “It helps restores radiance, soothes inflammation and improves skin texture and tone.”

In 2019 expect to see spas market cryofacials as a less invasive, but just as effective alternative to Botox.

Photo by puhhha/Shutterstock

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Where to Try Cryotherapy:
The Four Seasons Beverly Wilshire in Los Angeles offers a signature cryotherapy facial designed to tighten and tone skin, while speeding up collagen production. The SHA Wellness Clinic in Spain, Sea Island Resort in Georgia, The Pinehurst Spa in North Carolina and Cerulean Advanced Fitness and Wellness in Scottsdale all offer cryotherapy chambers.

Photo by Patrick Gray

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Virtual Reality
Going to the spa has always been about mentally getting away, relaxing and shifting your thoughts and perceptions, so don’t be surprised to see a pair of Oculus VR glasses next to your relaxation lounger or in the treatment room. While waiting for your service, you could be lying on a beach in Bora Bora, in front of a roaring fire in a ski chalet in Switzerland, or being taken on a sensory-guided meditation.

“We’re seeing technology in all areas of the spa, which is ironic considering spa is all about digital detox,” said Lynne Walker McNees, president of the International Spa Association. “But in the spa and the overall well-being movement tech isn’t about being mindlessly on your phone, it’s being used to enhance the experience and make services even better.”

In the treatment room, several spas are offering a virtual reality treatment add-on created by popular skincare company, Natura Bissé. The Mindful Touch enhancement combines technology, touch and mindfulness. The service begins with a virtual reality program filled with relaxing nature imagery designed to help a client relax deeper and get more benefit from the treatment. Throughout the treatment, a mindful audio track that helps the client relax and focus on the breath plays, while the therapist synchronizes the massage with the narration.

Dormy House Spa

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Where to Try VR:
Experience the Mindful Touch service at the Qua Baths & Spa at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas or The Dormy House Hotel & Spa in the English Cotswolds. The Be Relax chain of airport spas offers a Virtual Reality pedicure in its Dubai location.

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CBD
Since the stigma and legislation around cannabis has relaxed, spas are increasingly offering CBD treatments. Now, before you get to thinking that your spa buzz becomes another kind of buzz, CBD is the part of the marijuana plant that is non-hallucinogenic. So while it won’t get you high, research is showing that what it can do is help everything from chronic pain and anxiety to insomnia and skin issues. Whether or not you want to try it, is your call, but for sure it’s a product that is trending in spa menus.

“In 2019 spas will go beyond CBD massages and incorporate it into different modalities like facials and body treatments,” said Sallie Fraenkel, president of Mind Body Spirit Network.

Loma de Vida Spa

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Where to Try CBD:
The gorgeous 25,000 sq. ft. Loma de Vida Spa at La Canterra Resort & Spa in Texas Hill Country offers CBD oil as an add on for its massages. They use CBD CareGarden products, featuring organic whole plant oil resulting in a high concentration of CBD. After my massage I noticed that my joints didn’t crack, and my muscles were less tense for nearly a week. It’s no surprise that CBD is offered at Colorado-based The Spa at St. Julien in Boulder. Opt for the Ultimate Colorado Experience, which includes a CBD scrub, CBD massage and a CBD infused tea. New York celebrity aesthetician Ildi Pekar offers a CBD facial that also uses electric stimulation and oxygen to get your skin glowing.

Six Senses Spa

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Airport Spas
If ever there was a place where stress and anxiety runs high, it would be at the airport. Yet in the past airport spas were limited at best and off-putting at worst. In 2019 that is finally changing.

“From airlines to airports, the spa and wellness trend continues to expand based on guest demand. In-flight massage is an amenity by Air Malta while Lufthansa Airlines provides humidifiers for passenger comfort,” said Tompkins. “Highly regarded spas like Be Relax in the States offers some of the finest custom facials and treatments with Dermalogica and OPI product lines, while Heathrow celebrates its Elemis brand spa. “

The trend towards more branded spas is definitely giving airport spas a legitimacy they hadn’t enjoyed in the past. In its Centurian Lounges, American Express features Exhale spas and in Dubai, Etihad Airlines boasts a Six Senses Spa in its lounge. In Paris, luxury skincare brand Clarins offers complimentary facials for passengers in the Air France lounge.

Beyond the spa, airports and airlines are recognizing the need for wellness. At Qatar’s Hamad Airport there is a vitality and well-being center with a pool and hydrotherapy services, and Singapore Airlines just partnered with Canyon Ranch to develop a program on its long-haul flights that focuses on healthy food, guided stretching and better sleep 30,000 ft. up. Qantas, Cathay Pacific and Hawaiian Airlines all offer in-flight meditation and wellness programming via their in-flight entertainment systems.

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