Fitness an ever-increasing priority for luxury travelers

By Jeri Clausing
InsightWith fitness an ever increasing priority for luxury travelers, hotels for years have added amenities and programs to keep both leisure guests and road warriors fit.

The creative options grow daily: programs that lend guests workout attire, in-room yoga kits, boot-camp retreats, in-house dogs to walk and run with.

Some properties are raising the bar with the addition of wellness concierges.

In Denver, the Hotel Teatro has a running concierge that offers guided runs through the city.

Jeri ClausingThe Grand Hyatt San Francisco recently announced a program that promises to do much more than provide a jogging map and directions to the closest juicing shop. For instance, a hotel representative says, wellness concierge can book San Francisco's killer Soul Cycle class, or get them outfitted and signed up for Sweat Republic's Surfboard Yoga.

They might also direct clients across the street to Nike for its free running club, which includes bag storage, water, post-run snacks and a chance to try out the latest Nike running shoe. Or they can book in-room yoga, either with a private instructor or with videos and a mat.

A few years ago, Ritz-Carlton launched a similar, more comprehensive wellness concierge program for its Destination Club members, saying that health and wellness are the leading concerns among a majority of members.

Those concerns have only been growing, according to recent studies.

A survey in June by Spafinder Wellness, a media and marketing company for the spa and wellness industry, found that 62% of respondents said that they would like to take a vacation where healthy activities were the primary purpose of the trip.

The Global Wellness Tourism Economy report released by SRI International last year projected wellness tourism will grow nearly 10% a year for the next five years, nearly twice the rate of global tourism overall, to reach $678.5 billion by 2017.
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