Revealing plans for the hotel’s dedicated personal grooming floor, Retreat Health & Spa, Wilby said: “For the last 20 years, spas have been seen as a ‘nice to have’ or as an afterthought; however, we are seeing increasingly large numbers of potential guests use spa and health facilities as a major factor in their hotel choice.
According to a global survey on spa consumer preferences in 2004, 34 per cent of respondents only visited spas when travelling, and 93 per cent actively looked for spa facilities while abroad.
Wilby said: “The luxury hotel business is booming in Dubai, as record numbers of tourists are visiting the city instead of the Far East or traditional favourites such as Bali.
“Dubai has developed its five-star product tier, with many luxury properties doubling profits in the last year, and re-investing the money in renovation and the extension of spa facilities to meet this increased demand.”
Wilby is well placed to comment: she also manages the hotel’s sister property Le Royal Meridien Beach Resort & Spa, which has won the award for Leading Spa Resort in the Middle East for the last two years, as well as being the only Middle East spa to be named in Conde Nast Traveller’s top 10 spas around the world.
She explained: “With Retreat Health & Spa, we are presenting a mix of swift grooming as well as more conventional treatments and see this as being one of the major ‘pulls’ for both hotel guests, and residents at our 205 short- and long-stay furnished apartments.”
Grosvenor House, opening in the summer, will be the first hotel complex to open on the Dubai Marina. The hotel has partnered with Nextar, the UAE-headquartered holding company for N.Bar and 1847, to operate trend-setting concepts in Retreat.
Retreat Health & Spa will house the fourth N.Bar in Dubai, the second 1847 – its venture for men – and the group’s first ever hair concept, currently under the working title of The Hair Bar. The whole floor will be open to hotel guests and residents, as well as walk-in customers.
With just a few months to go until the opening of the first hotel on Dubai’s newest lifestyle location, Dubai Marina, the 45-storey Grosvenor House is tipped to become a landmark on the city’s skyline.
The hotel will have 217 sea-facing rooms, while the 205 apartments will offer stunning marina views, and three of the signature touches will be plasma televisions in all rooms, personalised butler service and 24-hour room service from all outlets, in addition to the use of beach and pool facilities at the adjacent Le Royal Meridien Beach Resort & Spa.
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