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Hyatt adds to wellness portfolio with acquisition of exhale

29 Aug 2017
On the heels of its recent acquisition of wellness destination resort Miraval, Hyatt has announced it is also acquiring US spa and fitness brand exhale for an undisclosed amount.

Exhale has 25 locations in key markets throughout the US and the Caribbean, and combines barre, cardio, yoga and HIIT classes with massages, facials, acupuncture, and nail and waxing treatments.

“Hyatt and exhale are a natural fit, as exhale’s unique focus on mind and body will help deliver on the promise of transformation and bring everyday opportunities to care for people so they can be their best,” said Steve Haggerty, Hyatt’s global head of capital strategy, franchising and select service. “The acquisition reflects Hyatt’s established strategy to super-serve the high-end traveler by offering experiences beyond traditional hotel stays.”

Founded in 2003 by Annbeth Eschbach, exhale employs around 1,000 associates, includes dozens of branded programmes and has a loyal following with guests.

“Exhale was the first to market a concept that addressed both mind and body, spa and fitness, and broke away from the traditional spa and gym,” Eschbach told Spa Opportunities. “It created a new wellbeing paradigm conceived as a lifestyle brand – not a luxury, but an everyday experience.”

Hyatt intends to offer exhale locations and programming as part of the World of Hyatt platform, offering new experiences for loyalty programme members, and will also position the brand for “thoughtful global expansion,” including new free-standing locations and among Hyatt hotels where the offering fits.

“Wellness remains an area of importance for many of our guests, and one of the things we love most about exhale is its authentic approach to caring for both the mind and body,” said Haggerty. “Exhale builds on Hyatt Hotels’ existing wellness offerings, as well as Miraval’s innovative mindfulness programming, by extending support for guests’ wellness journeys every day. As always, we’ll be thoughtful in our growth in the places that matter most to our guests.”

Eschbach said the exhale team will continue to lead and operate the business as a distinct standalone within Hyatt’s wellness category, in an effort to preserve the uniqueness of its culture and sense of authenticity. She will remain as CEO and president of exhale.

“Our dreams have always been bigger than life, but we never expected that this mind/body/wellbeing direction would gather so much momentum, and are thrilled to partner with Hyatt to continue to bring transformation and wellbeing to people around the world,” said Eschbach.

“Hyatt’s acquisition of exhale is wonderful, as they are a strategic partner who will position exhale for thoughtful global expansion,” she continued. “We share the same dedication to mindfulness, transformation and caring for people to be their best. And we share the same passion for transcending the traditional industry boundaries to deliver on our promise.”

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