In Brief

Wellness real estate sector gets a boost

THE Global Wellness Summit’s non-profit sister organization, the Global Wellness Institute (GWI), hosted its inaugural Wellness Real Estate & Communities Symposium in New York and virtually around the globe. The event drew hundreds of attendees and featured power players from every aspect of this booming sector, including developers, investors, architects, interior designers, suppliers and more.

A highlight on the day’s robust agenda was new data presented by GWI researchers showing the growth of wellness real estate (a sector GWS trend watchers originally identified in 2007 as “spa real estate”) has been nothing short of extraordinary. The researchers shared the wellness real estate sector nearly doubled from $148 billion in 2017 to $275 billion in 2020 and estimated there are over 2,300 wellness projects worldwide (either built, partially built or in development), up from 740 in 2017.


Travellers still hesitant to fly: report

ACCORDING to Phocuswright's latest travel research report, U.S. Traveller Behaviour: Must-Haves for Moving Forward, three in five already plan to travel domestically and one in five plan to travel internationally. But one fourth remain undecided amid the ongoing uncertainty, especially older travellers.

Travelers still indicate that they are hesitant to fly compared to pre-pandemic times, but more than two in five anticipate traveling by plane in 2021. The proportion of travellers who will journey by rail is expected to return to pre-pandemic levels, while 31 per cent plan to travel by personal vehicle.

Private rentals of homes and apartments got a boost in 2020, as many travellers steered clear of hotels, and instead sought lodging where they had greater control over personal space and minimal contact with others. Comfort in returning to hotels is on the rise in 2021, with more than three in five travellers planning to book a hotel stay. Despite all the positive signals from travellers, more than one in 10 are not yet certain what their trips will entail.


‘Living local’ trend gains momentum in UAE

THE ‘living local’ trend is gaining strong momentum in the UAE as residents explore the wide range of exceptional luxury travel opportunities close to home, according to new data by Global Hotel Alliance (GHA), operator of the world’s largest loyalty programme for independent hotel brands, GHA DISCOVERY, featuring more than 500 hotels across 35 brands in 85 countries.

Data on summer travel behaviours from GHA DISCOVERY members based in the UAE, where GHA is headquartered, reveals that 92 per cent took a staycation from June to September 2021, compared to just 68 per cent during the same period in 2019.

Bigger picture data reveals the Middle East and North Africa as the third-largest staycation market globally this summer.