Are Nap Bars The Next Awesome Wellness Trend?
Sleep is essential to our overall wellness and becomes increasingly desired as we get older. Gone are the days when we could roll out a mat on the floor and take a few hours for an afternoon snooze. The cookies and milk that immediately followed were pretty great, too. Yet, as children, we didn’t seem to care much for naptime; we didn’t realize how desperately we would want it back in the years to come.
We wistfully look back at those days, wishing that nap time existed for adults. We might not be able to go home in the middle of the day, but we can lay our heads down in our cubicles or perhaps sneak a snooze in the car during lunch. Unfortunately, neither of those scenarios are socially acceptable.
But, a new trend is emerging and those golden days of afternoon siestas may soon return. Substitute the milk and cookies for a glass of wine and Spain’s newest nap bar, Siesta & Go. Located in Madrid’s Manhattan, Siesta & Go in Azca is Spain’s first nap bar. With nineteen beds available at an hourly rate, you can take a break from a tiring day at any time, experiencing the most comfortable slumber complete with slippers and nightshirts.
You don’t even have to set your alarm, as employees will wake you up at the time of your choosing. And there is of course the added bonus of not falling asleep in a public space. Afternoon naps played an important role in Spanish culture up until recently. By tradition, people of Spain would enjoy siestas in the middle of the 11-hour workday.
Mandating shorter work days has been a goal of employment minister Fátima Báñez, which would allow Spaniards to get off work at 6 pm instead of 8 pm. Currently, the work day in Spain begins at 9am followed by a coffee break and working until 2 pm. Employees have two to three hours for lunch and stay at work until 8 pm.
Typical families in Spain won’t even get to bed until midnight. As the citizens of Spain wait for the miracle of shorter work days, nap bars are a huge relief after a long shift. Siesta & Go owner, Maria Estrella Jorro de Inza was inspired by Japanese capsule hotels and nap cafes. Without making an appointment, anyone can stop in, sleep and be on their way.
According to Jorro de Inza, lunch is the busiest time, considering most employees have up to three hours to enjoy some relaxation. Siesta & Co even welcomes customers who have no intention of napping; quiet work spaces with free WiFi are also available. If you simply want to read a book and charge your phone, you can do that, too.
Many employees also have to work far from home, so for traveling customers, luggage storage is available. Like a hotel, Siesta & Co is cleaned daily, so you don’t have to be concerned about the germs of strangers. While the people of Spain have more need for siesta bars due to their exceedingly long work days, other countries participate in the trend as more of a luxury than a necessity.
For a short time, Dubai offered a lavish nap bar experience, complete with plush dune-shaped lounge chairs, soft lighting and luxurious pillows. Herb tea and essential oils were also available for more relaxation. This experience had no entry fee, but items were sold including the dune chairs, the kairos (lights timed on intervals to aid in controlling breathing pattern), the mobile shadows (linen and silk shaped like clouds), and the shiny shadows (circular shapes giving the illusion of an artificial sky). For the equivalent of $15 an hour, you can have a luxurious napping experience in Spain.
The Bottom Line
While many countries lust over the possibility of adopting such a business opportunity, rest and relaxation is needed far more where employees are overworked and the work days are a grueling 11 hours. Thus, nap bars in Spain will likely be far more lucrative than in the United States. But this is not to say that the trend will not be attempted nor is unlikely to succeed. After all, millions are spent on luxury items and experiences worldwide.