Recently, I was interviewed by New York Times writer Natasha Singer for an article focused on the number of over-the-top luxury urban spas open or about to open in New York City, “Keeping Up Appearances, No Matter the Dow”. These are spas that will charge you anywhere from $250 up to $500 for a single service, many of which are located within the best hotels in Manhattan.
I’ve been in the spa industry for over 25 years and during that time have owned or operated over 75 spas and medical spas of which 10 or more were in the luxury category. So this is a topic I’m fairly comfortable speaking about and though there is a definite market for this level of spa (especially in Manhattan) I’m not sure if there is sufficient market share to go around to fill 6 over-the-top luxury spas. And depending upon what occurs over the next year or two with the current recession, it might be a long hard road for many of these newer or about to open spa operators.
I will add, that in a recession, today’s female consumer is much more likely to cut out the $500 spa treatment that no one ever sees, long before she cuts out her $500 Botox treatment that everyone sees.