Spa Experience Attracts Thousands to NYC’s Grand Central

Creating what is to become one of the most powerful marketing tools for the spa industry, SpaFinder launched its first-ever Spa Experience in Fall 2007 at Grand Central Terminal’s Vanderbilt Hall. The inaugural, four-day event showcased beauty and spa treatments, luxury travel, and product demonstrations from more than 50 leading spas and spa beauty companies.

The enthusiastic turnout for the event confirms that a growing number of consumers are eager to incorporate elements of the spa lifestyle, such as travel, wellness, and beauty, into their everyday lives. “The success of The Spa Experience represents a powerful new marketing tool in terms of how the spa industry interacts and connects with consumers,” said SpaFinder COO Sallie Fraenkel. “Our exhibitors saw first-hand that consumer events like The Spa Experience can help them expand their audience and grow their businesses.”

Grand Central Terminals’ Director of Marketing Karen Weber confirmed the event’s success. “The Spa Experience was one of our best attended events and its unique nature made it an instant hit. We are looking forward to making this an annual event at Grand Central Terminal.” The Hall is adjacent to the world’s busiest Terminal with more than ½ million travelers every day, using the Terminal for transit and shopping. Vanderbilt Hall is a host location for events featuring some of the most impressive displays of lifestyle products and services.

Exhibitors at The Spa Experience ranged from title sponsor The Cliffs Communities and supporting sponsors Avon Wellness and JetBlue Airways to Ireland’s SAMAS Deluxe Destination Spa at the five-star Park Hotel Kanmare and Mexico’s Rancho la Puerta to spa beauty companies like Clarins Skin Spa and Jane Iredale’s mineral essential Skin Care Makeup. Consumers enjoyed the pampering as they explored Vanderbilt Hall where free beauty treatments, spa product samples, and demonstrations provided an immersion into all things spa.

SpaFinder CEO Pete Ellis confirmed The Spa Experience will return to Grand Central in 2009. SpaFinder is also considering other cities for 2009, such as San Francisco, Chicago and Dallas. Ellis also confirmed the expansion of SpaFinder’s signature Aspen Spa Day consumer expo into a two-day event in August 2008.

Aspen Spa Day was launched in July 2007 and attracted more than 2,500 spa enthusiasts to downtown Aspen. The inaugural, one-day event showcased treatments, cuisine, and product demonstrations from more than 25 of the world’s leading spas and spa lifestyle companies.

“We’ve always believed that people need to feel the massage, taste the cuisine, and experience the treatment in order to appreciate what the spa lifestyle is all about,” said Fraenkel. “Our exhibitors saw first-hand that consumer events like Aspen Spa Day can help them expand their audience and grow their businesses.”

The large turnout, which exceeded turnout expectations by almost threefold, had many exhibitors running out of product samples before the event’s conclusion, while others sent for extra massage tables in order to perform more treatments.

A major highlight of Aspen Spa Day was the Spa Café, which featured signature dishes from five award-winning chefs aligned with the world’s top-rated spas. More than 5,500 portions of spa cuisine were consumed in the first two hours of the event.

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