Spa Demographics
by Steve Capellini

I recently taught a spa workshop in Calgary, Canada, and something there struck me more than it usually does teaching here in the states. Perhaps it was because the participants were from another country (though you can hardly call Canada “foreign”). Or perhaps it was because of the falling snow, when I’m used to 80-degree winters in south Florida. Upon closer examination, I came to the conclusion that what impressed me most was the demographics of the spas that workshop attendees were in the process of creating.

There were people from near the Arctic Circle, people from tiny hamlets with no shopping malls, no hotels, few public amenities. One woman was from Dawson Creek, a village in northeastern British Columbia, at the southern terminus of the Alaska Highway. There were others from the heart of downtown Calgary, a cosmopolitan city of millions with a great skyline and discriminating client base. People from the ski resorts of Banff and Canmore also attended.
In other words, people came from almost every type of location possible in that part of the world. The one thing they had in common? Spas, of course. Regardless of geography and demographics, the clients they wanted to serve were ready to receive spa treatments. Whether it was in a converted farmhouse in the backwoods of Spruce View or an upscale salon/spa in the tony neighborhoods of Calgary, these facilities were geared toward people who want spa services in their lives.

So what’s the best spa demographic in your area? Do you think you live in a town that is too remote to carry a clientele? Well, I don’t think you could be more remote than Dawson Creek. Too small? Spruce View isn’t even on the map. Too big and already overrun with spa competition? Calgary is home to dozens of locations, but new ones continue to do quite well, thank you.
In other words, you can take a little of the fear factor out of the spa demographics situation, at least in my experience and that of my workshop participants in many areas. And what do you get when you take away the fear? Excitement! I’m excited to offer the Royal Treatment Spa Certification workshop in your neighborhood, at the Downeast School of Massage. Hope to see you there!

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