Making sure people can enjoy the best in spas

SME catches up with Jason Goldberg (pictured above) CEO of SpaSeekers to find out more about the company

1. Tell us about SpaSeekers. When was the company set up? was established in 1989. We showcase the most comprehensive selection of UK spas & packages that appeal to the widest audience. Our free booking service, best price guarantee, exclusive spa deals and easy-to-use website make us the leading supplier of UK spa experiences. We’re also the exclusive provider of spa experiences for 33 million Tesco Clubcard customers and also the nominated provider of spa experiences for o2 Priority which covers a further customer base of around 17 million

2. What was the thinking behind it?

In 1989 (before the internet) there was little or no information source on spa venues. After much investigation we obtained a list of UK health spas, of which there were just 12. We wrote to them explaining that we were proposing to launch a central reservation, advice and booking service and that we’d like to arrange a facility visit to learn more about their health & wellness services as we were predicting an up and coming boom in this sector.

3. Who are the people behind the venture? What did they do before launching SpaSeekers?

A family business, I was 17 years old realising that despite being a good golfing county player I wasn’t blessed with the level of talent required to make it as a professional golfer, although golf did install some vital traits that would later come to fruition in order to be successful in business such as: determination, resilience, work ethic, goal setting. My dad was winding down a failing hotel booking agency business in the Midlands at the time and mum got involved charming our customers on the phone. We worked from our garage in Coventry where the business would begin to grow.

4. What were the challenges in the early days?

Lack of skillset within the business was a major challenge in the early days to the point of “winging it” the business was growing so quickly; each day was unchartered territory which would present a new set challenges to which we had to find solutions. Between the three of us we were taking care of: Sales enquiries, booking itineraries & confirmations, admin, marketing & advertising, negotiating with suppliers, accounts etc. It was common for me to be taking incoming sales calls by day before starting my evening shift after dinner comprising of packing brochures and posting to customers, sometime working until past midnight. I remember one Christmas setting a 3am alarm as we had hundreds of gift vouchers to type up and post out in time for Christmas Day.

5. You’ve been going for more than 30 years now. Looking back, what are the highlights?

I have fond memories of those early days, working with mum and dad from our garage, all hands to the pump, arguments, and laughter along the way. Another significant highlight was the birth of the internet which would later catapult our business to unpresented levels, albeit with a lot of hard work, stress, and expense along the way. Other highlights include being such a reliable pillar of support to so many spa business across the UK and providing a service which has now handled over two million spa bookings. Something we are very proud of.

6. Where do you hope the venture will be in five/ten years’ time?

We continue to be industry innovators; we are passionate about spas. We’ll continue to evolve our business and website in line with customer requirements, ultimately making spa experiences even more accessible for more people, more of the time. The demand for spa, health & wellness is only increasing, we have never been more ambitious and competitive than we are today.