Pulse March 2019 - Page 52

CONVERSATIONS WITH GAYLE BRADY CONTINUED FrOm PaGE 48 whether a large fitness component makes sense. i think that some form of it makes sense, though, like having a stretching zone and treadmills for walking. another problem with in-airport fitness is the apparel and sneakers. They aren’t provided, and customers don’t have them in their carry-on bags. air Vita catered to business travelers—and i really think it’s a business traveler market, because vacationers probably aren’t worried about working out in the airport—and they often travel light. it makes fitness a tough sell. airVita had locker rooms; members could store gym clothes and sneakers with us, and it was still difficult. P: And I’m guessing that space is an issue, too? B: yes, the last big issue is space. Being profitable in an airport almost requires calculating the profit per square inch. airport express spas do a lot in a very tiny space; After shuttering Air Vita, Brady went on to work at Golden Door, among other renowned spas. 50 PULSE n march 2019 they don’t have a lot of private space, or a lobby. in the end, i think long-haul international is the best market for integrating a fitness component. P: If you were to launch AirVita today, what would you do differently? B: fitness, definitely. i would’ve scaled back on fitness and provided more treatment space. The nap rooms, believe it or not, were very popular when we were open and i still think that’s something that people would pay for. We had a lobby area and a lounge…we’d never do that again. it’s just way too much square footage. manicures and pedicures are a really popular service, so i think we’d offer those. one doesn’t have to get undressed, it’s something that women and men do, and it’s relaxing. incorporating a full foot massage can really benefit the entire body, too.