SHORT HILLS, New Jersey—Hilton Hotels and Resorts’ launch of a new branded spa product, Eforea, is part of the company’s five-year strategy that will reimage every aspect of the Hilton brand—including rooms, lobbies and restaurants, according to Dave Horton, global head of the Hilton brand.
Horton and Tyra Lowman, senior director of spa for Hilton, provided additional details on the Eforea product.
Eforea is part of an effort to “reignite blue (the Hilton color) energy through innovations and customer-centric changes that are smart and relevant to travelers,” Horton said.
He said the company is considering other “turnkey” initiatives, including lobby, food and beverage and technology concepts. Hilton will consider creating its own restaurant brand, Horton said. “We are developing a number of restaurant concepts,” he said.
Also, a global room re-design is underway with prototypes already in place at company headquarters in McLean, Virginia.
As far as Eforea, Horton said the next location will be in Melbourne, Australia, with others following quickly in Pattaya, Thailand, and in the Maldives. Horton said 83 hotels—a mixture of new Hiltons and conversions—have committed to implementing the Eforea product. That effort will make Eforea “one of the fastest growing spa products in the world,” he said.
Horton said that while Eforea will be made available to Doubletree by Hilton (doubletree1.hilton.com/) and Embassy Suites (embassysuites1.hilton.com) properties, there will only be “a smattering” of those.
Integration of signature items and amenities
Lowman said each spa will look different depending on the hotel but that core signature items would be part of every spa. While there will be set menus for spa treatments and products, 10% of spa services and products will be customizable to the location. “We couldn’t have an Eforea in Thailand without offering Thai massage,” she said.
Resort properties will be required to have 10 treatment rooms while urban locations will need to have six. There will be an option to open the spas to day visitors.
The products with which Eforea is partnering will not be placed in guestroom bathrooms at this point, but the company also is coming up with a concept for those in-room products.
| A treatment room in the Eforea spa.
Horton said that it is a good time to invest in a product like Eforea because “good spa can drive value and RevPAR.”
“Spas will drive choice to Hilton and add cachet to HHonors (loyalty program),” he said.
Spa bookings will be integrated into the hotel PMS, according to Lowman, and will be bookable at the front desk. The company is using the SpaBooker management system.
A turnkey solution
As for the turnkey aspect, Horton said that Hilton would do the training, staffing and purchasing of products for Eforea. The owner will pay for installation and management fees. The cost of installing an Eforea spa, he said, would vary widely depending on the size of the spa and the number of modules installed.
Horton said Hilton is in the process of creating a separate spa concept for the Conrad brand but had not yet discussed doing so for the Waldorf-Astoria brand.
With all these initiatives underway, Horton said, “We look at ourselves as a 91-year-old company that is acting like a start-up.”