Over the last few years, interest has grown in body care and the pursuit of wellbeing which goes beyond simple therapeutic aspects. Demand is becoming increasingly sophisticated and challenging, moving in the direction of spas and wellness centres where visitors can spend hours or even a whole weekend relaxing, often far away from the hustle and bustle of the city.
These centres are continuing to develop their offer with ideas for firming up, toning, rejuvenating, cleansing and detoxing both bodies and minds, with a range of holistic treatments.
The market is continually growing, even during difficult times. For instance, in Milan in 2010 alone, 130 new centres were opened, the equivalent of a new centre every 72 hours. Moreover, the sector is enjoying significant interest in terms of investment and employment which is shown by the numbers of workers with specialised roles. Around 70,000 people are directly involved in this sector, but the demand for experts is constantly rising.
Turnover for the sector exceeds €21 billion and this figure is still increasing (by around 10% over the last 5 years), but some companies have done even better: for example, those which are branches in a larger network of centres have been able to optimise costs and increase profits.
Alongside the demand for relaxation and wellbeing are ad hoc beauty treatments: hence the need for many centres to choose beauty product lines specifically for the treatments on offer.
The trend – as seen, for instance, with the QC Terme spa chain – is for companies to create their own product lines. In a recent interview, the head of the QC Terme group, Saverio Quadrio Curzio, said that “as well as wellness centres, the group is also developing […] a range of fragrances and cosmetics which are made in Italy. The company is now considering a multi-brand distribution and collaborations with hotel chains”. As his brother, Andrea, explained, “we have just opened a store in Rome in the Eur shopping centre, which is in addition to the other store at the Oriocenter. Our idea is to offer current or potential customers a taste of the experience which they could enjoy in our wellness centres”.