Column: Leo Trippi MD Oliver Corkhill on how the wellness trend is hitting the slopes
Oliver Corkhill says a skiing holiday is about more than just hitting the slopes for today's wellness-focused travellers
With one in five travellers set to book a wellness trip in 2019, Oliver Corkhill, managing director of luxury travel company Leo Trippi tells Tempus how the trend has found its way into the ski industry.
"According to the Global Wellness Institute, wellness tourism is one of the fastest growing industries and it is no surprise that the ski industry has cottoned on. We get more requests from non-skiers than ever before and it seems that a holiday in the mountains is no longer just about how hard you can hit the slopes. People are looking to enjoy the beautiful alpine landscape at a slower pace of life whilst taking care of body, mind and soul.
Luxury chalets are now equipped with incredible spa facilities to satisfy this growing focus on wellness. Whereas before guests would be satisfied with a hot tub and a steam room, owners are constantly looking for ways to meet the increased expectation of visitors. Constant additions are being made to chalet facilities, whether that be indoor-outdoor pools, chromotherapy baths, hay saunas or fitness facilities. To stand out from the crowd you have to offer something different and unique that takes a guest’s experience to the next level.
It’s not only about the facilities – there is a serious demand for qualified therapists who can offer the latest treatments too. Many of our chalets have a permanent member of staff to attend to a client’s wellness needs, offering everything from a standard deep tissue massage to hot-stone massages and reflexology. We can also access international stylists and hairdressers to advise on personal makeovers if required.
Many of our chalets are equipped with a state-of-the-art gym and as a result we have seen an increase in requests for personal training sessions. Yoga and pilates sessions with experienced instructors are also popular as a pre-ski warm up or post-ski warm down, stretching out any weary muscles ready for another day on the slopes.
The other area we have seen the wellness concept expand into within the “chalet experience” is in food and beverage concepts. The traditional cheese fondue and gourmet four-course meals are being replaced by bespoke menus designed to cater to the client's dietary requirements, whether that be vegan, paleo, gluten-free or something more unique.
A focus is placed on sustainability and products tend to be sourced locally within the region. Sharing platters and tasting menus are becoming more common, and the menus are much more flexible giving guests the opportunity to just have a light dinner if they have enjoyed a no expense spared lunch. Chefs are more tuned into really providing what their guests want to eat, providing a pre-arrival menu consultation with them so they can offer them exactly what they desire."