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Spa Consultants, Dr. Manish Patwardhans brainchild, has become the go-to resource for many Indian spas

When the Indian spa and wellness industry began to take form about a decade ago, few people knew what was going on. Among the first few people who entered this sphere was Dr. Manish Patwardhan. He took his training in Ayurveda and work experience in pharmaceutical companies to the next level and ventured into the world of spas. While the initial journey began with invitations to conduct Ayurveda workshops in India and abroad and formulating products, it  graduated to spa consulting Which led to the formation of his company by the same name in 2005. Today,‘Spa Consultants’ is perhaps one of the most successful and recognized spa consultancies in India with many success stories in its portfolio. We take a look at this inspiring journey.

The beginnings

The first milestone spa project that Dr. Patwardhan was invited to set up, was a spa in a hotel in Alibag, now known as the Radisson Blu.. He then formalized his new calling by setting up and registering a company called ‘Spa Consultants’ along with an exhaustive company website. Thanks to word-of-mouth and the eponymous brand name, Spa Consultants’ next big project came from the HRH Group of Hotels owned by the royal family of Udaipur for whom the company set up spas in Udaipur and Jaisalmer.

However, things weren’t exactly easy a decade ago, admits Dr. Patwardhan. “We were doing far fewer projects than what we do today; but again, the market was nascent. There were a lot more failures stories in the market than success stories. Spa was looked upon as a luxury product, and there were huge misconceptions about the Spa industry.”

But being at the right place at the right time helped the brand massively. Also fundamental to the success was the choice of brand name ‘Spa Consultants’ which had excellent recall value and thanks to some consistent SEO content, their web presence was also very strong. That made it easy for clients to find them online and soon the company came to be known among the spa fraternity. Dr. Patwardhan credits most of this success to word-of-mouth publicity and strong referrals as the company has no marketing or business development team to speak of!

The evolution

After the breakthrough with the HRH Group of Hotels, things started falling into place for Spa Consultants. And referrals gave Spa Consultants projects in India and overseas. Dr. Patwardhan proudly states, “I am really happy and proud today to say that we are one of the largest Spa Consultancy companies in the country having set up more than 75 Spas in India and four Spas overseas. Currently we have 25 Spa projects in the country and one each in Kenya, and China.”


With a team of strong team of 60, Spa Consultants has opened some of the most recognized names in the spa segment in India. While each of his projects is dear to him, we pressed him to name some of his favourites. Here is the list:

-          Sarowar Portico Lazy Lagoon Zuri Spa, Goa

-          Spa Buddha at Gulmohor Greens Country and Golf club

-          Ezrah Life at Oman

-          Zazen Spas in Pune and Mumbai

-          Senza Spas in Chennai

-          Rewa Escape in Mumbai

-          Ziv Spa at Fidalgo Hotel, Goa

Speaking of his personal involvement Dr. Patwardhan says “Honestly, after a certain time, I don’t remain a Consultant for my clients; I become a part of the Project Team. These projects are dear to me, because they helped me learn a lot of new things.”

With such a vast body of work, it is hardly surprising that Spa Consultants was adjudged the Best Spa and Salon Consultant for two consecutive years in 2012 and 2013.


Offering Urban Nirvana

After having worked in the realm of spa consultancy for over seven years, the next  step for Spa Consultants was to get into spa operations. The company realized that there was a limit to the number of Spas they could consult in one city  after they finished more than 10 projects in Pune. They came to a point where they had to start denying projects in the city, as they didn’t want to consult rivals Spas next to each other. “I understood that this situation would arise more and more often and that is when I decided that we should get into Spa Operations. This way, we could tackle this issue and also show the Industry ‘how to walk the talk!”

 ‘Urban Nirvana’, the brand that operates spas for Spa Consultants was set just over 18 months ago. In this short span of time, it has bagged 17 operations in India and one in Oman. The first Urban Nirvana Spa was at the very well-known Fortune Select Loudon Hotel by the ITC Group in Kolkata.

A Bouquet of Services

Spa Consultants presently offers a host of services to its clients. The end-to-end Consultancy Services include concept development, spa design, services planning, equipment sourcing, product sourcing, staff sourcing & training, and development of marketing collaterals. Apart from this, they also offer complete Spa Management and Operations through Urban Nirvana where they take over the operations of a Spa and run it for the owners.

Spa product development is also one of Dr. Patwardhan’s passions and he has in fact been awarded a gold medal for his research work in the field of product development by Institute of Indian Medicine. His Ayurveda and Pharma background together have helped him create some award-winning products in the past. He has recently developed a skincare line called ‘Milife Skin Essentials’ for one of his clients. The company plans to launch an entire range of Spa professional and retail products with them in the near future. And last but not the least, the company provides fully trained manpower to their Spas through their Spa & Wellness Academy – SWA. Spa Wellness Academy (SWA)

Like all spa professional in India, Dr. Patwardhan bemoans the lack of trained manpower in the Spa industry. To tackle the serious crunch of talent in this sector, and ensure a steady flow of therapists to Urban Nirvana Spas, the company has set uo the Spa Wellness Academy (SWA) in Aizwal, Mizoram. 

Students from poor social economic background are recruited and trained free of cost. The newly trained students arethen recruit them in the Company’s own or clients’ Spas. SWA does not provide staff to the open market due to security problems and also because they don’t want to be percieved as a recruitment agency.

More than 140 therapists have been trained from SWA in the last 12 months. andthe trained candidates have a 100% job guarantee as soon as they finish their training successfully.

Future perfect

We asked Dr. Patwardhan what the future looked like for Spa Consultants and with evident excitement he replied, “The future is extremely bright! There are some exciting plans in the pipeline, which I cannot disclose right now. All I can say that ‘something exciting is happening’…..Keep your eyes and ears open. You will soon hear about it!”

Going by Spa Consultants track record, we can certainly expect the unexpected.

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