The UAE’s spa industry is forecast to achieve revenues of $1.5 billion by the end of 2015, rising to $2.2 billion by 2017, making it one of the most valuable tourism-related industries in the Middle East, with the MENA region the second fastest-growing market in the world for spas after Sub-Saharan Africa, according to the Global Wellness Institute (GWI).
As such, to benefit from this growing sector, Arabian Travel Market (ATM) 2016 will introduce a dedicated Wellness & Spa Lounge, exclusively for 25 exhibitors representing some of the world’s most recognised health and wellness hospitality destinations.
According to GWI’s 2014 Global Spa and Wellness Economy Monitor report, the UAE will top spa growth in the region by 2017, more than doubling current business volume with 17.9 per cent annual growth since 2012.
Exhibition manager, ATM, Nadege Noblet-Segers said: “In our research we found that across all markets, wellness tourism is exceptionally popular, with in excess of nine per cent year-on-year growth forecasted for the next two years, which is a staggering 50 per cent faster than overall global tourism.”
“This prompted us to design a dedicated space with seminar sessions focused exclusively on industry topics. ATM Wellness & Spa Lounge will be working in association with Spafinder Wellness 365, the leading consumer resource for wellness travel and the largest marketing and incentives company for the wellness industry, to offer suppliers an exclusive and convenient platform to meet new contacts and conduct business,” she added.
Noblet-Segers further explained that according to the 2015 State of Wellness Travel Report, almost nine in 10 travel agents said they expect to see growth in the wellness travel for 2015.
GWI statistics show that wellness tourism represents six per cent of all domestic and international trips, and 14 per cent of total domestic and international tourism expenditure.
Designed to be a hub for wellness and spa professionals, the lounge will host two full days of pre-scheduled appointments with top Middle Eastern buyers and up to 25 international wellness suppliers.
A wellness seminar, which will take place in the Showcase Theatre, is scheduled for April 27 under the theme Wellbeing Hospitality – Competitive Concepts for Hospitality and Leisure Assets.
The spa and wellness theme is only a part of the agenda being developed for ATM 2016. The main theme is mid-market travel, but other highlights include, technology, halal tourism, business travel, technology, responsible tourism, shopping, aviation, culture and heritage, and adventure travel.
ATM takes place at the Dubai International Convention & Exhibition Centre, from April 25-28, 2016.