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Biohacking Spas: How Technology Is Changing the Future of Spa Treatments

Published May 14, 2023
Published May 14, 2023
Skye Studios via Unsplash

Biohacking started as a small experimental initiative that aims to prolong life, and has become a worldwide wellness movement. Dave Asprey, a Silicon Valley entrepreneur, spent 15 years experimenting with different ways to improve his health using science varying from butter-rich coffee to the use of a subzero cryotherapy chamber. Methods of biohacking range from blood testing to age-old techniques like yoga. The industry has a market size of $28.87 billion in 2023 with a compound annual growth rate of 23.7%. The latest innovation within the category involves touchless technology in spas and hotels.

The pandemic transformed consumers' relationships with touch and access to spa treatments, as well as the quest for wellness and longevity, leading to technology and scientific-led treatments promising full-body upgrades growing in popularity. BelleCell, located in London’s affluent Mayfair district, describes its services as “the home of molecular wellness,” offering six biohacking treatment packages ranging from £90 to £860 ($112.05 to $1074.95). The most affordable treatment is called Infrashape and involves a 30-minute bicycling session where the bottom half of the body is inside a capsule that closes from the waist down, allowing the lower body to get hot and sweaty, maximizing the calories being burnt. The Infrashape also includes an infrared light that penetrates the upper layers of the skin, creating a warming effect that reaches deep tissue layers and helps to eliminate cellulite and wrinkles. Other procedures offered include IV drips that feed a cocktail of nutrients and antioxidants straight into the bloodstream in a bid to have an anti-aging effect, and stem cell lift facials whereby a radio frequency handpiece is massaged over the skin.

In the US, the Fairmont Century Plaza in Los Angeles launched its first in-spa biohacking program, created by Dr. Oz Garcia and the general manager of spa, wellness, and retail across the company, Magdaleena Nikolov. Every treatment offered takes place in the Oakworks Curva Lounger, an anti-gravity chair featuring a NASA spacecraft-inspired curve that encourages the customer to slip into a meditative state. Different tech-based accessories and experiences such as Hyperice compression boots, LED face visors, and aromatherapy steam rooms are also utilized by the spa. One of the world’s first biohacking facilities, Upgrade Labs, was opened four years ago at The Beverly Hilton hotel spa. The facilities are divided into two categories: “Performance,” which provides workouts that deliver results in a fraction of the time a normal workout machine would; and “Recovery,” which includes anti-inflammatory therapies such as infrared saunas and cryotherapy.

With the global wellness travel industry set to be worth $1.02 trillion by 2030, it’s no surprise that biohacking spas are appearing across hotels and retreats are being created to fuel demand. The Clinique La Prairie Revitalisation Premium program is a seven-day, six-night experience that involves treatments based on DNA testing for highly personalized diagnosis and cell therapy for anti-aging. The full retreat includes accommodation and meals and will set customers back $41,231.

DNA testing and blood tests have become the bread and butter of biohacking spas. The SHA Wellness Clinic in Spain provides live blood analysis, which is designed to reveal signs of illness like cellular disorders that lead to chronic disease. This is achieved by analyzing the movement, shape, and toxicity of cells in a drop of blood, far from what one would typically expect to experience on a spa trip. The Apuane Spa at the Four Seasons Resort Punita Mita offers myDNA Retreat, a treatment that utilizes DNA cheek swab collections from consumers to create individual recommendations to improve skin and diet.

While wellness trends come and go, biohacking seems to be set to stay with the ever-increasing developments in wellness-related technology and scientific research around human health. These futuristic treatments seem to be taking the spa experience to a new level—it’s no longer just about relaxing, it’s now a push toward long-lasting health, and in some cases, eternal life.


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