Media branching into lifestyle services

Like the U.S. economy in general, magazine has been slow to pick up steam. With this in mind, brands /magazines are looking for new partnerships as a means to drive new revenue streams and create new user experience for their consumers/readers.

Monthly fashion magazine Elle is getting into the luxury spa business and opened the first-ever ELLE Spa at the Eden Roc Renaissance Miami Beach in June – an unprecedented partnership between a media property and a luxury resort. It will feature “editorially-inspired treatments” applying its unique ethos, experience and beauty and health aesthetics. The 22,000 square-foot space has a Mediterranean-style décor and aside from massages and facials, it will also include amenities like a 24-hour fitness center, hair and nail salon, sauna, rooftop deck and light dining. It will also sell products, apparel and beach accessories chosen by Elle editors.

Elle isn’t the only magazine that will have a storefront in South Florida. Ocean Drive magazine partnered with Miami International Airport to create the Shoppes of Ocean Drive at the North Terminal, expected to open later this year.

Food is also being used to beef up revenue streams. The economic squeeze is encouraging some small scale farms to embrace the locavore trend. Meanwhile, agri-tourism, marrying farming and tourism, is becoming another way to earn a living. Likewise, Michelin, the famed tire company known for its hotel and restaurant guides, launched its new “experience” brand. Michelin Food & Travel offers more “cultural authenticity” for travelers, such as private kitchen demonstrations, wine tastings, truffle hunts, even behind-the-scenes access to Michelin-starred restaurants.

In addition, magazine publishing giant Condé Nast has created a new division, called Condé Nast Restaurants. These are cafes and restaurants around the world, aimed at strengthening the power of its brand. Fashion houses are following suit. Witness Ralph Lauren’s Ralph’s on the Left Bank in Paris for a taste of Americana, or Swarovski’s Café Kristall for some haute Austrian delights.

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