That “wow” feeling…

When did you last time feel ”wow”, after a spa treatment? Do you know what exactly made you feel ”wow”? I think one of the best ways to develop as a therapist and to improve the treatments and services at your spa is to actually visit other spas and experience as many treatments as possible. This is the way you truly feel what to do and not to do.

But how do you know if a treatment is way beyond good or average? For me a treatment is like a journey, which actually already starts outside the treatment room, already when planning the treatments and reading the spa menu. And it is not complete until the guest has received product recommendations and is enjoying the relaxation room.

But still, what differs a beyond ordinary treatment from just another massage? I think it is all in the hands of the therapist and how present and mindful one can be. As a guest you definitely feel if the therapist is “not in the room”, rather thinking about what he or she will be doing after work or worrying about the next treatment… All the stressful thoughts in the mind of a therapist can unfortunately be felt in the hands.

Nordic Facial (high res Colorurbox)Another thing that impacts the treatment experience is that the mind and body needs time to gradually calm down. It is difficult for the mind to change into a calm state right away, coming from a hectic outside world. Therefor it is essential for the therapists and the spa team to consider how to help the guests to wind down before the treatment?

Of course we can do this by just asking guests to arrive 15 minutes earlier, but can we add something more in the treatments to enhance the process of calming the senses? Can we do small talk and a hand massage as a start, instead of just placing the guest on the treatment table and start right away…would that make a difference?

The same goes with the ending. There is nothing worse than a treatment ending abruptly, from the deepest state of relaxation and in one second the therapist is done… Try to add some highlights in the end of a treatment, that give hints that the treatment is soon over and that it is time to wake up. But hints that gives a “wow feeling”…

Can you add hot compress on the feet and a gentle foot massage at the end, or can you end with a soft scalp massage? Sometimes it may be enough just to place the hands on the guest’s shoulder for a while and stay there… And then (of course) slowly, slowly increase the intensity from the lights…

A small gesture that gives a lot of impact is, when the therapist has kept the bathrobe on a towel heater, so it’s warm and cosy as you get dressed after the treatment. It is nothing magic, but just a very comforting gesture, as many guests may feel a bit cold getting up from the warm treatment table.

And another way of creating a “wow sensation” is tailor-making. It may sound easy and obvious, but to make a treatment feel really tailor-made it takes some effort. As a therapist you have to ask the right questions, listen to your guest and sometimes even listen between the lines to fully understand what your guest is looking for. Practice listening, rather than talking and you are one large step closer to being able to truly offer tailor-made experiences.

What about you? How do you create “wow-treatments”? Please feel free to share your thoughts, we would love to hear from you.

/Maria

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