Thermal sector Neo-Aquitaine: AQUI O Thermes bets on innovation and health | New Aquitaine

Region of New Aquitaine there are 15 thermal baths, 29 thermal centers including a thermal hospital. Nationally, it is the second most frequented spa region and represents 25% of the market.

To support the revival of resorts and players in the Neo-Aquitaine thermal sector, the group supports them in their transformation with innovation and health as the main levers. It also participates in the development of the new spa plan 2023-2028 for the Nouvelle-Aquitaine Region, the future basis of the sector’s development strategy.

A structuring and attractive sector dedicated to reconnecting with growth

The consequences of the pandemic have had a strong impact on the world of hydrotherapy in France, and in particular in New Aquitaine, which is one of the three main regions in France and is positioned as the first French region in the number of private thermal companies (28 thermal facilities ). In this context, AQUI O Thermes, the neo-Aquitaine thermal group, observed in 2021 a first increase in the level of attendance with 84,005 spa guests (ie +72% compared to 2020), but still lower than before Covid where the region hosted 150,000 spa guests on average per year, generating €96 million turnover (2019 data). For the 2022 season, which is still ongoing, the forecasts confirm this recovery dynamic. The level of attendance increased by 33.92% (an average of 112,500 welcome guests) compared to the previous year for a turnover estimated at 67.5 million euros.

“Our sector has been hit hard by the health crisis, but we are in the process of overcoming it, as shown by the gradual return to economic performance in 2019. The next season should allow us to take an additional step”, explains Arnaud Laborde. , President of ‘AQUI O Thermes.

The closure of thermal facilities in 2020 and 2021 has highlighted the wealth brought by thermal baths to their local economy. A curist generates approximately 2400 euros during his stay, to which is added the value created by a companion. These assets are re-injected into the local economy through large investments. While it is 10 to 25% nationally, in certain departments of the region, this rate rises to 35%.

“We are drawing constructive lessons from this period of crisis, which has confirmed the interest of the cure to reduce the pain of patients and encourages institutions to offer new services. This context prompts us to look bigger to restore his letters of nobility to neo-Aquitaine hydrotherapy, spearhead of French hydrotherapy,” he adds.

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on the left: Julien Bazus, Regional Councilor of New-Aquitaine responsible for hydrotherapy / in the middle: Arnaud Laborde, President of AQUI O Thermes / on the right: Laurence Delpy, Director of AQUI O Thermes

Innovation and health, 2 priority levers to boost the sector in 2023

Today, the thermal sector must evolve and face new challenges. “Our role is to support the players in hydrotherapy neo-Aquitaine in their transformation,” emphasizes Laurence Delpy, Director of AQUI O Thermes. For the 2023 season, the group’s development strategy revolves around 2 priority areas: innovation and health.

In terms of innovation, AQUI O Thermes is focusing on researching new services in the thermal environment, such as digital therapy with the Bliss© virtual reality mask to reduce pain and anxiety. The budget for the deployment amounts to 25,600 euros. AQUI O Thermes has also developed Thermassist, the first online platform for improving the reception of spa guests. Tested in vivo with 3000 spa visitors in 3 pilot establishments (Evaux-les-Bains, Saujon and Thermes in Dax), this technology, with a budget of 92,200 euros, will be offered to all members of the group in 2023.

The mask of happiness
Bliss© Virtual Reality Mask

AQUI O Thermes

AQUI O Thermes is the association of hydrotherapy players in Nouvelle-Aquitaine. Established in 2009, it brings together professionals from hydrotherapy, health, tourism, training and research to bring its expertise to the treatment of spa medicine with innovation as a top priority. Its main missions: research and innovation, training, joint action and communication. Named as a business group, the association represents 12 of the 15 thermals in the region and ensures the promotion of its players, implementation and monitoring of the regional thermal plan.

pdfFor more information on AQUI O Thermes, download the “IDENTITY SHEET”

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