The emergence of spas is not recent. Earlier spas were located near a natural spring offering holistic wellness treatment to the visiting public. The term is more than often referred in conjunction with healing and curing than wellness. Spas got a make over from the Roman royals. They developed spas with a touch of class and a feel of luxury. In fact, they started using spas more or less like wellness centres, soaking in spring water, taking steam or hot air bath in a marble clad chamber, giving the body the luxury of soft massage, taking a cool dip in spring water and finishing with a relaxing drink.
Present day hectic pace of life, a busy social lifestyle of the lap top carrying corporate executives has created a profitable business opportunity for the hospitality industry – wellness travel. The concept of wellness is quite different than curative or medical travel. Wellness is for healthy people wanting to live healthier, whereas medical travel is for patients wanting to get well. This fine distinction makes wellness travel or spa tourism an interesting marketing proposition.
The term spa is derived from its Latin origin – salus per aquam, literally translating as water gifted health. No wonder then that the earlier wellness spots were located near natural springs as aqua therapy is considered mother of all detox therapies. The German health destinations like Baden Baden and Bad Neunehar, to name a few, have the prefix Bad, meaning spa or literally bath. Spa hotels and resorts today offer holistic wellness, physical, mental, emotional and spiritual in luxurious surroundings and atmosphere.