Thailand to train more therapists for halal spa treatments

PATTANI (Thailand), Oct. 22: Thailand is establishing a new learning centre to provide training to therapists and entrepreneurs in halal spa treatments and develop guidelines for businesses to comply with halal standards.

The centre, located at the Prince of Songkhla University (PSU) – Pattani Campus, offers training in all aspects of halal spa treatments, including the use of halal-compliant products and equipment and the provision of gender-segregated facilities.

This is a significant development for the halal spa industry in Thailand as it will help to ensure that there is a pool of qualified and trained spa therapists and entrepreneurs to meet the growing demand for halal spa services.

The new learning centre will also play an important role in promoting halal spa tourism in Thailand, as it will help position the kingdom as a leading destination for halal spa services.

A lecturer at PSU Pattani’s Halal Institute, Dr. Sufiana Sarisae, said the halal spa market is booming in Thailand, fuelled by the increasing number of Muslim tourists visiting the kingdom and the growing awareness of halal products and services, and the rising demand for wellness and spa treatments among Muslim consumers.

“Thailand is a world-renowned spa destination and many Thai spa operators are interested in converting their businesses to halal spas to meet the growing demand for halal spas from both Thai Muslims and Muslim tourists.

“The centre is a pilot project for a halal spa learning centre in southern Thailand, and it will also conduct research and innovation on halal spa products and development.

“The centre is expected to be fully operational in December,” she told Bernama.

She added that the halal spa centre costs about 9 million baht, including 6 million baht for construction costs and interior design, and 3 million baht for operational expenses and equipment costs.

Sufiana said a halal spa will provide segregated zones for male and female customers. Male therapists are only for male customers, and vice versa.

Besides that, she said only halal-certified products will be used and no decorative items that contradict Islamic principles will be displayed.

“No music will be played, but nature sounds such as mockingbird singing and water streams will be,” she said.

Sufiana said that all of the spa products will be sourced from Thailand and it is halal-certified.

“Most of the ingredients are Thai herbs. For example, the Halal Institute produces a halal spa product called Langkasuka Massage Oil, and it also offers a five-day training course on how to make it. All spa products must be halal-certified or halal in nature,” she said.

The Global Wellness Institute (GWI), a leading research organisation for the wellness industry, projects the spa industry to generate US$151 billion in revenues by 2025, with hotel/resort spas and day/club/salon spas accounting for the largest share of the market.

Thailand is a leading destination for halal spa tourism, with a growing number of spas offering halal-compliant services and products. GWI reported that Thailand’s spa industry generated US$1.1 billion with 2,659 establishments in 2020.

Sufiana said a delegation from the Faculty of Hospitality, Tourism, and Wellness at the University Malaysia Kelantan (UMK) visited the Halal Institute and the centre to explore opportunities for collaboration on halal spa services and tourism.