|Limited liability corporation|
|Genre||Spa and Retail Product Company|
|Founded||New York City, U.S. (1996)|
|Headquarters||New York City, United States|
Number of locations
|North America, United Kingdom|
|Products||Bath, Body and Skincare|
|Services||Facial, Massage, Body treatment, Manicure, Pedicure and Waxing|
|Parent||Steiner Leisure Ltd.|
Bliss is a multi-channel spa and retail product company headquartered in Downtown New York. The company retails its own line of bath, body and skincare products through its Bliss catalog, website, Bliss spa stores and at international luxury retailers including Bloomingdale's, Harrods, Harvey Nichols, Neiman Marcus, Saks Fifth Avenue, Nordstrom, Selfridges and Sephora.
Bliss spa was founded in 1996 by Marcia Kilgore, a Saskatchewan, Canada native who moved to Manhattan in 1987 to attend Columbia University. During college, she became a personal trainer to make money. Soon after she decided to take a course in skincare, largely because she had personally suffered from acne since her preteen years. She began giving facials to her friends out of her East Village apartment. She opened her first single-room office in New York’s Soho district in 1991, followed by the opening of a three-room mini-spa called Let’s Face It! in June 1993. To accommodate increasing demand, Kilgore opened the first Bliss Spa in SoHo in July 1996.
In March 1999, the luxury products group, LVMH (Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton), acquired a majority stake in Bliss spa for a reported $30 million. It was LVMH’s first North American acquisition, and a break with their previous strategy of pursuing European prestige brands. In December 1999, LVMH opened a second location, Bliss 57 on East 57th Street.
Two years later, in November, 2001, Bliss opened its first international spa, Bliss London. The next year the company launched its first QuickBliss spa service station at Harvey Nichols Knightsbridge in London, offering an abbreviated menu of fast facials, waxing and nail services.
In January 2004, Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide acquired Bliss spa from LVMH for a reported $25 million in cash. As part of the acquisition, Starwood launched Bliss Spas in several of its W Hotels in an effort to move its W hotel brand into the resort business. The first to be opened, that same year, was Bliss 49 in the W New York in New York City. During the next two years spas were opened in the company's hotels in San Francisco, Chicago, Los Angeles, and Dallas.
In April 2006, JetBlue Airways partnered with Bliss spa, in an effort to fill seats in competitive transcontinental markets. Bliss amenity kits were distributed to passengers on overnight flights between Western states and the East Coast for a one-year period.
Bliss continued to expand within the hotel chain, opening in Atlanta, Scottsdale and Hong Kong in 2008, a second Atlanta location, Doha, Hoboken, and Ft. Lauderdale in 2009, and St. Petersburg in 2011.
Bliss spa is often credited for starting the mid 1990s spa boom. Its products and services are market with humorous names and slogans, and by a playful "Blissgirl" character illustration which appears on products, catalogs and the company website. She is almost always dressed in a signature white towel and Bliss’ Softening Socks and Glamour Gloves.
Advertised as "the young, modern antithesis to stuffy, intimidating spas", the spas include rhythm & blues music, a brownie buffet, and "movie-while-you-manicure" nail stations. The spa has attracted celebrity clientele including Oprah Winfrey, Julia Roberts, Uma Thurman, Jennifer Lopez and Madonna.
- Spa Finder Best Brand 2007
- Conde Nast Traveler Hot List 2006 - Bliss San Francisco and Hot List 2007 - Bliss Los Angeles
- Allure Best Body Scrub - Super Minty Soap n’ Scrub and Best Hotel Day Spa - Bliss 49
- InStyle Magazine Best Beauty Buy 2007 - Baggage Handler
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