I was recently invited to step on board the brand new US cruise ship Celebrity Equinox, which as part of a promotional week leading up to its maiden voyage, staged two-night sailings for international media and travel trade from Southampton in the UK.

In line with global wellbeing and spa tourism trends, the ship features an extensive spa and leisure centre and has also introduced a new class of stateroom — the AquaClass cabin.

These cabins offer in-room perks such as Frette bathrobes, Hansgrohe shower heads, an upgraded in-cabin dining menu, a fuller range of bathroom amenities and access to a spa concierge, as well as use of the AquaSpa and its associated ‘clean cuisine’ restaurants and cafes, all with the spa enthusiast in mind.

But what really piqued my interest was the description Celebrity Cruises gave as to its true target market — the ‘Boomer Women’.

By this, it means women aged around 40 to 60 whose kids have most likely flown the nest and who are looking for “quality and pampering”.

Story continues below

Celebrity’s UK sales manager told me that ‘Boomer Women’ shopped at Marks & Spencer or Waitrose for their food, liked the comfort of a Mercedes Benz, but also embraced technological innovations such as the iPod.

This got me thinking that the GCC is rife with ‘Boomer Women’ who are crying out for leisure, spa and wellbeing facilities targeting their demographic and that this region’s burgeoning leisure industry should get on the case and start tailor-making products, services and promotions with these women in mind.

That’s why I was encouraged to hear that Reebok Middle East had announced several new initiatives targeted at the Gulf’s female residents, having not only unveiled its new face for Reebok in the region — Zena Habi — but by setting up its special fitness concept, created in association with Cirque du Soleil — Jukairi-Fit to Fly — exclusively for the ladies.

If you want to know more about this lucrative sector, just type in ‘Boomer Women’ into any search engine and you’ll be surprised at just how many forums and websites there are dedicated to these savvy consumers.

The tamer ones include Boomer Women Speak (http://boomerwomenmarketing.typepad.com/), the National Association of Baby Boomer Women (http://www.nabbw.com/index.php) and Boomer Women Marketing (http://boomerwomenmarketing.typepad.com/) while you might be enlightened by the more adventurous side to the Boomer Women crowd when you log onto Feisty Side of Fifty/Baby Boomer Women (http://feistysideoffifty.com/) and Wild Boomer Women (http://www.wildboomerwomen.com/).