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1.1 Definition

It is important to distinguish thalassotherapy from spas, as they cover two different activities.

The term thalassotherapy refers to all therapeutic and wellness treatments that can be provided using substances from the marine environment (e.g. seawater, mud). Generally recommended for those suffering from fatigue and arthritis, thalassotherapy should be located by the sea or ocean (English Channel, Atlantic and Mediterranean).

A wellness center, on the other hand, does not have such obligations. Synonymous with well-being and luxury, a spa offers the customer a moment of calm through beauty treatments and relaxation sessions. While most of the spas are managed independently, some have been created in luxury hotels.

However, this study will not include balneotherapy, also known as thermal care, which uses thermal water. Bathing stays, unlike those spent in thalassotherapy and spas, can be reimbursed by health insurance under certain conditions.

The health and wellness market in France, estimated at 19.8 billion euros in 2018 according to Euromonitor, is growing more slowly than the global market. Thalassotherapy centres and spas have therefore had to be modernised in order to differentiate themselves from each other, with spas increasingly presenting themselves as a more accessible alternative to thalassos.

1.2 World market and European market

We can rely on the figures published by the GWI (***) the data published in ****. These data cover spas and thalassotherapy as well as wellness tourism and the economy of well-being at work
Well-being worldwide was a $*.* trillion market in **** . The sector grew very strongly between **** and ****, at an average annual rate ...

1.3 National market

It is possible to give an overview of the French spa market using data from the Global Wellness Institute which details the data for France.
The spa market in France represented *.** billion dollars in **** thereby giving him the opportunity to * e global place behind Japan and in front of Italy. The ...


2.1 Demand and Drivers

A study of Deloitte provides an overview of the characteristics of people staying in a thalassotherapy centre
The clientele is mainly female since **% of the people taking the waters are women against only **% male . The people taking the waters are relatively old, since the report states that the rejuvenation of the ...

2.2 Demand trends

Demand has changed in recent years with the growing importance of short stays. According to the study by Deloitte the number of people taking the waters by thalassotherapy for short stays has increased by **% between **** and **** while those coming for more than * days decreased by *% over the same period
Short stays ...


3.1 Location of thalassos in France

In addition to the spas that are found in many cities in France, it may be interesting to look at the geographical specificities of thalassotherapy centres in France. Indeed, depending on their location, their turnover varies greatly

Source: ****
Also, as we can see on the graph above, thalassotherapy centres are particularly ...

3.2 Competition and complementarity between spas and thalassotherapy

It seems important to note that competition and complementarity that exist between thalassotherapy centres and spas. The first are subject to regulatory constraints which require them to be located by the sea, the latter do not have this obligation - they can be located anywhere in France
As explained in the ...


4.1 Services in thalassotherapy institutes

Thalasso treatments can be "wet" when they take advantage of the virtues of seawater. This care can take the form of baths, showers, hammams or even relaxation sessions in the pool . [***]
Care can also be provided by dry when it comes to using a method that does not use seawater. These ...

4.2 Services in spas

Spas are generally versatile in relation to the offer offered to customers. The latter often offer services specific to spas, as well as services that can be found in wellness centres (***).
Two categories of care are particularly present in the offer of spas:
The massages Body and facial care
The massages ...

4.3 Supply trends

Foreign competition for French thalassotherapy
Thalassotherapy institutes, whose stays were for a long time reimbursed by the Health Insurance, had to face a break when the stays have stopped being reimbursed in ****. [***]
The latter, which became much more expensive in the absence of reimbursement, indirectly encouraged the development of a competition ...


5. Current regulation

Regulation of thalassotherapy centres
It may be important to note some regulatory aspects that have marked a rupture in the area
Cures in thalassotherapy centres are no longer reimbursed by the Social Security since ****. On the other hand, the thermal cures are subject to conditions:
The spa cure must be prescribed ...


6. Segmentation

  • Thalassa
  • Thalazur
  • Relais Thalasso
  • Thalasso de Pornic
  • Saint James Albany Hôtel Spa
  • Hôtel La Réserve Paris
  • Dior Institut
  • Spa L’Occitane
  • Cinq Mondes
  • Spa Océanide
  • Thalasseo
  • Balinea

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