If it seems as though healthy living has risen to the forefront of consumer culture, it’s because in many ways, it has. Mobile health apps, 21-day cleanse programs, and on-demand workout videos are all experiencing tremendous popularity at present. Even major food companies like Conagra and Kraft, known for manufacturing popular pre-packaged foods, have reported either sluggish sales or declining revenue in recent months, while all-natural, organic brands capture larger shares of the market.
It’s no surprise that even when on vacation, Americans are now pursuing a healthy lifestyle. According to recent reports on travel trends for 2015, healthy travel has emerged as a consumer trend projected to significantly impact the industry. Particularly when vacationing at traditional hospitality venues like hotels and resorts, vacationers are looking to maintain their healthy lifestyle with access to things like fitness centers, gyms, aerobics lessons, and access to sports equipment for recreation.
Vacationers aren’t just focused on fitness, either. Nutrition and wellness accommodations are also key features that vacationers may investigate before booking at a resort. The era in which vacationing was an excuse to “loosen the belt” may well be on its way out (or at least become far less prominent than it once was), as organic and authentic dining experiences have become more highly regarded. Millennials, who comprise a growing proportion of the U.S. travel population, are particularly concerned with nutrition, and the rise of travelers seeking wellness retreat vacation experiences is also driving the healthy travel movement.
If hotels and resorts are to maintain not just a competitive edge, but retain business in the near future, they’ll need to meet the evolving needs of their health-conscious guests. Top all-inclusive luxury resorts around the world, from Mexico resorts to Aruba hotels, are already affording their guests a healthier vacation experience.
What are they doing?
- Diversifying Menu Options
Some all-inclusive resorts are beginning to diversify their restaurants’ menu options to ensure their offerings aren’t exclusive to rich, calorically-dense foods that may not strike the health conscious as all that appetizing. This includes an emphasis on fruits and greens, and making the incorporation of natural, organic items easy to identify on menus.
- Including State-of-the-art Fitness Centers
To ensure that all guests can continue their daily fitness regimen—whether it involves 30 minutes jogging on the treadmill or an hour and a half of weight lifting and cardio—resorts have invested more into building or renovating on-site fitness centers that are fully-equipped with all of the equipment and accommodations guests could possibly need. Instructed group fitness classes, such as Zumba, are also helping these resorts attract fitness-minded vacationers. An abundance of outdoor activities and equipment, including volleyball courts, soccer balls, snorkeling gear, kayaks, paddleboards, and more, may also make a resort or hotel a standout selection for vacationers.
- Accommodating Guest Meal Requests
Leading all-inclusive resorts, such as Occidental Hotels and Resorts’ Grand Aruba resort, are also making it known to their guests that any dietary preference or restriction can be easily accommodated throughout a stay. The chefs and restaurant wait staff at these resorts are fully prepared to provide guests with vegetarian options or prepare gluten-free items. Not only would hotels and resorts be wise to make accommodating specific diets seamless, but advertising their ability to do so could help attract more health-conscious vacationers.
- Offering Spa and Wellness Services
Leading hotels and resorts are also investing more into their spa services, and placing greater emphasis on how a spa experience can afford a number of health benefits, such as decreasing stress, rejuvenating the mind and body, lowering blood pressure as an effect of deep relaxation, and more. In emphasizing their premier spa services, hotels and resorts will be able to attract more bookings from guests specifically seeking a wellness retreat. Of note, the global market for the wellness tourism industry is growing more rapidly than travel in general.
Ultimately, the more hotels and resorts embrace this healthy travel trend, the better these venues will be able to attract and sustain business, and the more guests will enjoy their experience.