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The seemingly powerful healing nature of the mountains is one of the reasons behind the legion of spas in Asheville, local owners said.
For centuries, people have been flocking to the region to take advantage of its natural rejuvenation properties, making the city home to numerous relaxation destinations.
“Asheville has a long history in the healing art,” said Ilana Craig, co-owner of Innovative Spa Management, which owns three local spas. “People used to come here to take in the good air when tuberculosis was prevalent in the country.”
The local culture of Asheville is what sets its spas apart from those in other cities, spa-goers said. The region’s focus on organic products and locally grown food has made its way into spas. At Spa Theology, customers can enjoy an organic orange blossom scrub made with some locally grown ingredients.
Frequent spa customers also said that Asheville spas seem to be more focused on making sure the customer feels relaxed beginning the moment they set foot in the spa by using the art of Feng Shui to arrange furniture and decorate their facilities.
“I think the ones around Asheville might be a little more focused on health and wellness instead of beauty,” said Jen Charlton, owner of Sensibilities Day Spa. “Here even our skin care, we are very focused on the wellness side. It’s definitely very popular because of the greening of day spas.”
The spa industry has gotten so big in Asheville that local owners are thinking of creating an association in order to maintain customer standards, network with other spa owners and better understand the nuances of the industry.
“I think probably the biggest reasons we would do that is to just protect consumers,” said Cristy Patten, co-owner of the Spa at Biltmore Village. “I think when you establish a standard of excellence, you can ensure the continuous elevation of professionalism and quality.”
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