Hilton Expanding spa Presence Through Partnership

Hilton Hotels Corp. pushed further into the hotel-spa frenzy last week with the announcement of a partnership between it, Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton (LVMH) and Spa Chakra, a network of luxury spas, ushering in Hilton's commitment to develop more than 70 new spas at its upscale properties worldwide.

The hotel chain already has 65 hotel spas and anticipates full implementation by year-end 2009, with the initial project being executed at the Waldorf-Astoria in New York.

Hilton and its hotel owners will invest approximately $200 million to fund the entire project. Operation duties will fall to Spa Chakra, and the spa facilities will feature LVMH products by brands such as Guerlain and Acqua di Parma.

"Discerning travelers increasingly are seeking a complete wellness experience," said Matt Hart, president and COO of Hilton Hotels Corp.

The Booming Spa Market

Increased demand for spa experiences has induced hoteliers to include spa facilities with their new projects.

According to PricewaterhouseCoopers, approximately 40 percent of luxury and ultra-upscale properties currently under construction in the United States will have spa components, compared to the 27 percent of existing luxury and ultra-upscale hotels that contain spa facilities and services.

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