Gym Marine Yachts & Interiors has recently expanded its service offering to incorporate spa design services, with the launch of its sister company Coral Spa Consultants. This will be managed by Kayleigh Westgarth, who has worked as spa manager on superyachts up to 136m and overseen spa setups on various new build projects, and has a wealth of experience designing functional and holistic spas to meet the growing expectations of superyacht clients.
Over her 12 years working in the superyacht industry, Kayleigh has observed a drastic change in how spas are prioritised on board. “When I first started working on yachts, the spa typically consisted of a massage room added in as an afterthought,” Kayleigh comments. “Over the years, it’s been amazing to see those spaces grow and develop as wellness has become an increasingly important trend.”
As superyacht spas have evolved, however, the design and operational considerations become more complex. The last yacht that Kayleigh worked on, for example, had a spa with a Cryosauna that reached temperatures of -110 °C. “This meant constant manning whenever in use,” Kayleigh explains. “Hammams and wet massage tables are also becoming more popular, and yachts are featuring different rooms for different treatments, so that more than one guest can receive a treatment at once.”
While superyachts are increasingly boasting luxurious and well-appointed spas, often the operational side of the space is not given enough thought due to the absence of practical knowledge in the design process. This can have a detrimental impact on the smooth running of the spa and the overall guest experience, which Kayleigh experienced first-hand during her time on board.
“I wanted to be involved in the spa design and setup early enough to be able to make changes that would enable the space to run well,” Kayleigh adds. “Just as Gym Marine creates gyms on board that are accessible and user friendly, I aim to do the same with the spa space.”
Important considerations that are often overlooked when it comes to superyacht spa design and setup include adequate and accessible storage for a range of products used across multiple treatments, sufficient space around a massage table for the therapist to move freely and perform stretches on the clients, and accessible plug sockets for equipment. Specific equipment and supplies for different treatments also need to be factored in as early as possible.
“The key to being a good therapist is moving around discreetly and making everything happen like magic,” concludes Kayleigh. “If you can incorporate the most important elements into the design early enough, you can offer a much more relaxing and enjoyable experience to your clients.”
Coral Spa Consultants can advise on the operational aspects of spas on board, including the design, specification, and installation. As well as being able to outfit spas with the most suitable equipment for the space and the treatments that the yacht wants to offer, the team can also support crew and onboard therapists with recommendations for products, creating a treatment menu, and ongoing training, if required.