In announcing the acquisition Hyatt cited exhale’s loyal guest following and dozens of branded programs. Hyatt said that exhale locations and programming will be part of the World of Hyatt platform in the future, bringing new experiences for loyalty program members.
The move follows Hyatt’s acquisition of wellness travel provider Miraval Group earlier this year. That deal brought Miraval’s flagship property, the Miraval Arizona Resort & Spa, under Hyatt’s umbrella, as well as the recently acquired Travaasa Resort in Austin and the Cranwell Spa & Golf Resort in Lenox, MA. The transaction also included the Miraval Life in Balance Spa brand, which opened its first location in Dana Point, CA, last year.
According to the Global Wellness Institute (GWI), the wellness travel market is expanding 50 percent faster than the overall travel industry. Importantly for travel agents, wellness travelers also spend 130 percent more than the average client. The niche is especially popular among Millennials, with 9 percent of Millennial respondents in MMGY Global’s 2016 Portrait of the American Traveler expressing a desire for a spa vacation, nearly double the report’s average of five percent.
The space has been making significant inroads in the cruise space as well, with earlier this year major spa brand Canyon Ranch announcing a partnership to bring wellness tours to Oceania Cruises, building on an existing agreement to operate Canyon Ranch SpaClub at Sea facilities onboard Oceania ships.