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Standards of Thai Spa Services Being Enhanced for AEC

March 29, 2014 Destination Thailand No Comments Email Email

Greater opportunities are opening for the growth the Thai spa business, the standards of which are being enhanced in terms of both personnel and service quality in preparation for the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC).

Statistics compiled by the Ministry of Commerce show that the Thai spa business is growing by 5-6 percent a year. The market value of this industry is between 15 and 16 billion baht annually. Most customers, at 80 percent, are foreign tourists.

Since populations around the world are rapidly ageing, the spa industry is expected to expand steadily, especially as an aspect of medical tourism. There are more than 1,000 spas across the country, with numerous workers engaged in this business.

For all manner of spa services, Thailand is the Asian leader. Spa prototypes and business manuals have been developed to serve as guidelines and tools for Thai and foreign investors. They offer information on how a Thai-style spa should be operated, complete with market and financial analysis, marketing plans, facility planning, spa programs, operation management, and interior decoration that may be incorporated in accordance with local regulations, technical methods, and cultural considerations.

Deputy Director of the Thailand Professional Qualification Institute (Public Organization) Kornsuang Pirom said that Thai spa services are popular worldwide. After the AEC comes into full effect in 2015, Thai spas are likely to attract more customers from ASEAN, and bright prospects are seen for this business.

In this regard, she said, the Thailand Professional Qualification Institute is working out professional qualifications for personnel engaged in the spa business. Spa operators will have to receive certification from the Institute. The occupational standards will help enhance spa services throughout the system. It is expected that the working out of spa professional qualifications will be completed in July 2014.

Thailand will be the first country in ASEAN to set professional qualifications for spa personnel. The qualifications are divided into five fields, namely management, reception, training, therapy, and spa attendance.

Thailand has earned a reputation as an excellent location for spa services in Asia. Bangkok is known as the “Spa Capital of Asia,” generating income through massage and beauty treatment services, thereby creating a sales channel for herbal products used in spa treatment. Many spa centers here are renowned worldwide for their expertise and high-standard services, as well as the hospitality of their personnel.

Thailand’s wealth of health care expertise and knowhow is embodied in Thai culture and indigenous wisdom. Visitors from all over the world appreciate not only the excellent medical and health care but also enjoy the experience of Thai spas and traditional Thai massage.

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