Printed from : LMD

01 May 2015


Active and wellness design
   BY Liz Terry

In January, the company behind Spa Business and Spa Opportunities magazines, and the Spa Business Handbook – Leisure Media – launched a new division called CLAD, the Community of Leisure Architects & Designers. The initiative is already revealing exciting possibilities for the spa and wellness industries.

The purpose of CLAD is to build a community of architects, designers, investors and developers. The scope is global and CLAD will cover all aspects of leisure, from spa and wellness to hospitality, retail, mixed use, health and fitness, sport, entertainment and everything in between.

CLAD will run a raft of magazines, websites and media feeds with the portfolio coming on stream throughout 2015. The website – CLADglobal.com – the social media feeds and the first publication – the glossy quarterly, CLADmag (CLADglobal.com/CLADmag) – hit the market in Q1, with a weekly magazine and an annual handbook to follow.

We see CLAD as bridging the gap between architecture and design and spa and wellness. Excitingly, there are clear indications that active and wellness design is one of the hottest topics for this audience – there’s both an appetite for knowledge and a lack of awareness of the role our sector has been playing in advancing thinking in these areas.

Looking at the bigger picture, with the obesity crisis in developed countries at the top of the political agenda and spa and wellness growing fast, it’s not surprising architects and designers are keen to contribute to the solution.

Added to this is a growing awareness that wellness design is a USP that puts a building ahead in terms of its commercial value to the owner as an investment and the amount consumers are willing to pay to use it. This is evidently an exciting proposition for architects, designers, investors and developers in the CLAD community.

We’re keen to see more powerful connections between active and wellness design, architects and designers and the spa and wellness industries for the benefit of all and it’s important the spa and wellness industry is at the forefront of this best practice and not following along behind.

Some industry specialists are already moving on this. We recently reported that WTS International is putting its designers through WELL Building Standard accreditation – validated by the Green Building Certification Institute – so it can offer clients this option at the design stage, for example.

In addition to upskilling spa specialists, we must also respond to interested mainstream architects and designers and partner with them wherever possible.

The aim must be to ensure all buildings and environments are sustainable and healthy to spend time in for both staff and customers and that they promote healthy behaviours. With spas often sharing real estate with hotels and other developments, the need for this has never been greater.


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