After rolling into the American Spa group earlier this year, the new SPATEC by American Spa was recently rebranded prior to its first event this year. Held at the JW Marriott Miami Turnberry May 19-22, the 26th SPATEC event—yet the inaugural one under the American Spa umbrella—was well received by both buyers and suppliers alike.
SPATEC is known for its unmatched ability to pair qualified buyers with powerful wellness brands. The new partnership between SPATEC and American Spa was formed to enhance the industry’s must-attend hosted-buyer conference. Now helmed by American Spa publisher and editor-in-chief Julie Keller Callaghan and supported by wellness industry veteran Maura Igoe as the director of sales, the new SPATEC by American Spa team took the event to new heights, which can be seen through rave reviews across social media. Most notably, Keller Callaghan's American Spa editorial staff lent a hand in vetting the buyers in attendance, ensuring meaningful meetings were held and that business was being done.
In addition to the networking opportunities, a number of both informative and fun activities were planned for attendees. An inspiring keynote was given by Susie Ellis, CEO and chairman of the Global Wellness Institute (GWI), on The Future of Wellness: Trends and Predictions for the Industry. Each morning began with an enticing workout option, including gentle sunrise yoga and Reggaelates, a fusion of yoga and pilates set to popular reggae tunes. At the second night dinner, guests danced to a live salsa band complete with professional salsa dancers. The closing night reception celebrated the event's locale with an '80s-themed Miami Vice extravaganza.
Take a look at what the buyers who attended have to say:
"SPATEC by American Spa was epic! Face-to-face meetings between buyers and sellers create personalized connections and lifelong partnerships. Interactive team-building opportunities, hands-on experiences and real time product sampling makes so much more of an impact in my business decisions than a catalog in the mail, email chain letter or random cold call. The experience was time productive, educational and a lot of fun!"—Gloria Ah Sam, spa and wellness director, The Kahala Hotel and Resort (Honolulu, HI)
"I expected my first SPATEC event to be full of information about new, cutting edge products and equipment- which it did not disappoint! The one on one meetings were incredibly effective; I had all my questions answered in just a short session. What I did not expect and loved the most about this event was the connections I made. As a spa director of a single location day spa, it was so comforting to feel like I am not alone! Sharing stories about sheet fires, interviews gone wrong and other hilarious mishaps is what really set this event apart for me- I left feeling as though I had made a ton of new friends. Thank you for the magic, American Spa magazine!"—Sharon Schmitz, spa director, THE pearl modern spa and boutique (Fulton, MD)
"What a well thought out and organized event. The vendors were high quality and well prepared for the operational and business-focused conversations we had. I’ve been engaged in ongoing conversations with several since returning home. This was my first SPATEC event, and the only regret I have is that I have not attended one before. I can’t think of any way you could have improved the event—but I am sure you already have new tricks up your sleeves for fall. Congratulations. Kudos. Well done."—Gary Adkins, director of spa, Four Seasons Resort Santa Fe (NM)
"This is the second SPATEC I have attended, and you would think I have known these individuals all of my life! There is a genuine sincerity that I have never found in any other industry I have worked in. These kind of connections cannot happen without the intimate one-on-one meetings that SPATEC provides. Although the purpose of this event is to conduct business, it doesn’t feel forced, and there is no pressure during the meetings. I am a serious buyer and value the financial investment these vendors make to have us attend the shows."—Debra Myers, director, Relâche Spa at Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center (National Harbor, MD)
"Thank you again for such a great event. I was a first time attendee, and events like this can make you nervous, but your professional organization and the open arms and friendliness will win everyone over. I had great talks with suppliers, and we are currently placing orders for our newly renovated spa. I hope I will be attending many more SPATECs."—Benjamin Donat, spa director, The Ritz-Carlton Spa, New Orleans
In addition to the buyers, suppliers that attended also thought this was the best SPATEC yet:
"Thank you so much for the most amazing SPATEC we’ve had to date! It was truly a top-notch experience from beginning to end. We are so thrilled with the connections we’ve made."—Deanna White, sales manager, Le Marché by NP
Overall, it's clear that the first SPATEC by American Spa was a huge success.
Up next, American Spa will be attending IECSC Las Vegas, June 15-17 at the Las Vegas Convention Center. The next SPATEC by American Spa will be at the Four Seasons Resort and Club Dallas at Las Colinas (TX), November 3-6. Interested buyers can apply to attend at www.spatecfall.com. Interested suppliers should e-mail Maura Igoe, director of sales, American Spa events, at [email protected].