For this month's Spa Party, I attempted to design an event that would appeal to both males & females. After publishing the first post in the series, I hit Twitter and asked for some feedback from the guys. Though all of the guys (2) seemed to like the concept, a friend of mine admitted that he'd still probably be hesitant to attend a spa party (but would be open to a spa day with his girlfriend). This feedback got me thinking even more about how best to tailor a spa party to fit both genders, or even how to throw an all-male spa bash. Most of these elements are ones that I've addressed (or will address) via this month's Spa Party Series but I felt it may be helpful to detail them in a separate post. So here's my list of things to consider when hosting a unisex spa event:
1. Set the mood with the initial invitation. A flowery and frou frou invite is not going to fly here, pick an invite that is gender neutral and wording that expresses "relaxation and good company" rather than "pampering".
2. Offer treatments that appeal to both sexes. I think most guys will go for a massage, even if they aren't ready for manis, pedis & facials.
3. Consider discretion and comfort levels. While most women may find the fact that they get to lounge around in a robe awaiting their services a treat, the gentelmen may not share that sentiment. At a unisex spa party have everyone stay in their clothes until they enter a separate treatment room, where they'll disrobe according to what treatment they are recieving.
4. Create a laid-back environment. Of course you want your guest to relax, but at the same time this is a party. Keep the bubbling brook sound track in the treatment areas and play music that guests will enjoy, create a space where conversation can flow freely and guests can enjoy each other.
5. Tweak the menu. I hope you didn't have your heart set on cucumber tea sandwiches. Devise a menu that isn't too heavy but has somethings that both guys and gals will enjoy. A variety of skewers would probably work well for a mixed crowd, depending on your overall theme and the time of year, but here are a few skewer ideas... fruit kabobs, marinated tortellini & tomato skewers, grilled chicken, shrimp or scallop skewers, or an antipasti skewer.
6. Decor. I'm thinking pastels don't scream "Guy Friendly"... do we agree??
Even given all of these considerations, some guys still won't be up to a spa party just yet. That's OK, introduce them to the benefits of the spa slowly. I think that mobile spas are perfect for this type of client. While all guys aren't opposed to getting spa treatments, they may not feel comfortable just walking into a salon, or spa which is despite efforts to offer "man-e-cures" are still women-centered environments. Think about how you'd feel if your guy wanted to surprise you by scheduling you a hair appointment... at his barber shop. When you get the spa to come to you, you control the atmosphere (which has it's pros and cons). You can schedule a couples session or just a treatment for him. If all else fails order a DVD on how to give massages, or watch a couple of how-to videos on YouTube.
Your Resident Spashionista!