woman using AI to improve her workout

Four Ways Fitness and Wellness Technology Will Elevate Guest Experiences in 2024

The boom in wellness travel is bringing a new kind of traveler interested in a “retreat-style” fitness and wellness experience from the hotels they select.

There’s a reason the hotel industry is highly competitive. Just look at the numbers: 108,000 hotels in the United States and climbing, a growth rate in 2023 of a respectable 8%, and close to 70% occupancy across the industry. As all of this happens, and hoteliers, look for ways to attract guests and build loyalty in 2024, two important trends are intersecting that could have a very big impact on every hotel’s business in the months and year ahead. First the boom in wellness travel is bringing a new kind of traveler interested in a “retreat-style” fitness and wellness experience from the hotels they select. And second, the rapid rise of AI and other innovative wellness and fitness technologies that can help hoteliers meet the needs of a new customer category. If you’re in charge of growing your bottom line, or making investments in technology that helps drive growth, this story is for you: the four ways fitness technologies are going to shake up guest experience and your business in the year ahead.

1. AI Algorithms Powering Personal Fitness Experiences

Over the past few years we’ve seen hotels treat, and brand, their on-site fitness facilities as separate experiential entities in much the same way that Vegas hotels host stand-out dining spots. It’s been about luxe materials, spa retreat treatments and the very latest in equipment. Those investments created the environments for exceptional experiences for guests who travel and want to stay on track with their fitness goals, but AI is set to supercharge that. AI-powered algorithms are now reshaping the hotel fitness experience through both powerful data acquisition and analysis, and consumer interface experience. Algorithms are able to analyze guest profiles, dietary requirements, gym usage and other data points to create highly personalized workout plans for guests at a time when they most need it: away from home and their normal routines. 

The technology is also able to auto adjust new smart fitness equipment for the required resistance and bio-mechanical settings based on a guest’s movement patterns and physiology to help guests get the best possible workout and avoid injuries or over-use strains. Hotels that haven’t explored this development, soon will, as these new AI-enabled experiences become a rapid and inexpensive way to foster feelings of care, attention and individual well-being among your guests.

2. Guest Data Analysis for Wellness Offerings

Wellness tourism continues to grow at an annual rate of around 30%, and the trend is spurring guests’ interest in spa, workout and relaxation in a wider variety of hotel stays whenever they travel. AI again here is beginning to play a pivotal role in enhanced guest experiences. By analyzing guest fitness patterns and preferences, hotels can offer targeted wellness promotions, recommend treatments, spa activities, and even provide nutritional guidance or special menu creations in on-site restaurants and room service offerings. 

We’ll see the continued integration of analytics tools with fitness technology and wellness services in the year ahead which is going to mean more powerful, personalized and meaningful insights for every hotel that embraces it.

3. On-Demand Content Creating Total Guest Convenience

More than 80 percent of Americans use a mobile device today and spend up to 7 hours a day looking at a screen of some kind. And while hotels have offered sophisticated apps for things like contactless, expedited check-in and room service requests, most have missed the opportunity to integrate guest fitness and wellness experiences. Leading hospitality fitness partners offer apps that can provide guests instant access to a library of content in their room, the hotel gym or anywhere on the grounds. Simple QR codes at check in enable guests to access on-demand workouts to make their time in your hotel gym even more engaging, or in-room winddown, stretch and yoga to destress from travel, business meetings or a long day. On-demand libraries that play direct to smart phones and tablets can offer hundreds of HIIT, core-strength, specialty and age appropriate fitness and wellness content for guests without the need to connect to any in-room TV or other device.

4. In-Room, App-Based Lifestyle Control

It’s early in the trend still, but wellness monitoring technologies will be the next big tech-enabled step forward in the guest room. We’re already seeing device-based check-in and mobile keys for room entry, but the trend will expand with mobile-based control of in-room features and facilities, as well as automated integrations. It’s still early in the emerging trend, but expect the intersection of guest fitness wearables that already monitor heart rate, blood pressure and sleep issues to connect to in-room humidity, temperature and even smart beds in the future.  These may not seem like the most pressing technology investments to make, but as guests become accustomed to mobile-first, ultra-convenient lifestyles, the hotels that invest in taking this next step will be the ones to secure loyalty in the year ahead.

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