Hotel guests now need more than a body scrub and a foot massage to feel pampered when they stay at a five star resort. Travellers are now opting for whole body checkups, complete with an on-site physician and dietician to make sure they are receiving the ultimate treatment during their vacation.
For years, resorts have offered spas and other amenities that promote relaxation and happiness, but now some hotels, resorts, and spas are directly entering into medical tourism by offering programs that partner with hospitals and other health professionals to provide a completely holistic wellness experience.
“Ten years ago, no one ever though of having a spa in a hotel,” says Dr. Yan Ang, Adventist Hospital’s lifestyle centre director and associate professor. “Now, every major hotel or resort has a spa. Now we have to ask, ‘What’s the next step after the spa?’”
Penang Adventis Hospital recently partnered with Shangri-la’s Rasa Sayang Resort and Spa located in Batu Feringgi Beach in Penang to bring the Wellness Escape Programme. The program includes what any spa offers; yoga, meditation, massages, wraps, scrubs- but also a wellness screening from a Penang Adventis Hospital physician.
The screening is performed upon arrival, and is used to determine exactly how to best serve the guests’ needs. “Hotel guests usually come to resorts to get pampered. That’s what spas do. Now, we are saying to them, ‘Wait a moment, since you are away from work now, you may really take this time to reflect on your health. We’re combining the holiday aspect of the guests’ stay at the hotel with the preventive medicine aspect,” says Dr. Yan.