The Global Spa & Wellness Summit (GSWS) announced that its eighth annual Summit will be held at Four Seasons Resort Marrakech in Morocco.
The event, which is considered the world’s most prestigious gathering of business, government and academic leaders in the wellness, travel and spa industries, is expected to attract a record number of attendees from Wednesday, September 10, through Friday, September 12, 2014. The host-country sponsor and co-organizer is the Moroccan Agency for Tourism Development (SMIT).
The second annual Global Wellness Tourism Congress (GWTC) will be held September 10. The GWTC brings together ministers of tourism and thought-leaders to analyze current market conditions and develop new strategies to further develop wellness tourism. According to a recently released GSWS study, wellness tourism is a USD 439 billion market.
Imad Barrakad, CEO, SMIT, said, “Business, health and wellness are among the six structuring programs of the Moroccan Strategic Vision for Tourism Development 2020. By developing the wellness and spa niche, we are targeting Morocco as an international destination for wellness via the promotion of new wellness and relaxation concepts that are based on an ecological approach that takes advantage of Moroccan’s local riches. Holding the 2014 GSWS in Marrakech is an opportunity for Morocco to introduce the richness and potential of the country for spa and wellness.”
SRI International recently forecast (in the GSWS report The Global Wellness Tourism Economy) that Morocco would rank among the top 10 nations worldwide for wellness tourism growth through 2017 and is expected to clock an average annual growth rate of 14.7 percent, 60-plus percent faster than the global average.
GSWS Chairman and CEO Susie Ellis noted, “Morocco is a splendid setting for the 2014 Summit. It has a rich history as a wellbeing destination with an age-old tradition of beauty, relaxation and body care. The Moroccan hammam, argan oil and the amazing new anti-ageing Barbary fig seed oil are just some of the contributions the country has made to spa and wellness worldwide. Equally impressive is the country's commitment to, and investment in, wellness tourism.”