10 Great Destinations for Spa Lovers
These stand-out spas cater to aficionados and beginners alike looking for unique treatments in captivating environments.
Photo By: Casey Figlewicz
Photo By: Kimberly Cornelison
Photo By: Aspira Spa
Photo By: Scott Campbell
The Spa at Boulders, Scottsdale, Arizona
The Spa at Boulders is a 33,000-square-foot facility nestled in the desert landscape of Scottsdale that incorporates labyrinths, astrology, medicine wheels and other ancient practices into its treatments. Try its Desert Zen Signature Massage (Swedish massage with hot towel compresses and citrus and jasmine mist) or the Shirodhara treatment, during which warm oil is drizzled onto your forehead to encourage an R.E.M. state, followed by a warm oil scalp massage and a light facial. The spa also offers guided rock climbing, hiking and mountain biking excursions as part of its wellness program.
Lake Austin Spa Resort, Austin, Texas
Located an hour west of Austin in the Texas Hill Country on Lake Austin, Lake Austin Spa Resort uses Eastern techniques in its treatments such as Japanese Manaka Tapping, a practice similar to acupuncture in which wooden pegs are gently tapped upon pressure points. Paddleboard yoga, morning meditation and other activities are available as well.
Ojo Caliente Mineral Springs Resort Spa, Ojo Caliente, New Mexico
Meaning hot spring in Spanish, Ojo Caliente Mineral Springs Resort Spa's natural hot mineral pools have been used by Native Americans for centuries. In 1868 Ojo Caliente became an established health spa known for its curative natural hot pools. Enjoy specialties such as the signature Ancient Echoes treatment which employs a variety of East Indian head massage techniques and finishes with a long foot massage or the Native American Blue Corn and Prickly Pear Salt Scrub that gently exfoliates, hydrates with aloe-like cactus sap, then wraps you in warm, herb-soaked towels. After, draw out impurities in a mud bath or any one of specialized natural mineral hot pools, then hike the cliffs above the resort and explore the ancient Pueblo ruins found there. At the Ojo Caliente’s sister property in Santa Fe, Sunrise Springs Spa Resort, experience the calming nature of the resorts silky chickens, and relax in the Puppy Studio while helping to socialize puppies that will grow up to be service dogs.
Williamsburg Salt Spa, Williamsburg, Virginia
Based on Poland's famous Wieliczka Salt Mine, Williamsburg Salt Spa uses 15 tons of Polish and Himalayan salt to create an environment believed to help with respiratory, allergy and sinus issues. Guests relax in recliners listening to the trickling sound of three salt-infused waterfalls, bliss out in the heated saline float tank or enjoy a Himalayan Salt Stone massage or other treatments.
Akela Spa, Deadwood, South Dakota
Located in the Black Hills of South Dakota, Akela Spa’s Akela Hante Massage combines cedar oil blended with Douglas fir and warm compresses with massage to relax guests before they dry sauna in a Lakota-style tepee or soak in the outdoor hot tub.
Sol Duc Resort and Hot Springs, Olympic National Park, Washington
The Spa at Terranea Resort, Rancho Palos Verdes, California
Just 50 minutes south of L.A., the 50,000-square-foot Spa at Terranea Resort’s treatments are inspired by the Pacific Ocean heard just outside its 25 treatment rooms. Signature Rituals include the Ocean Prelude, in which a dry brushing is followed by a nutritious seaweed wrap and a warm saltwater bath, ending with a rhythmic luminaria oil massage. After, dine at the Spa Café as you soak up the California sun and watch for whales, or stroll along the oceanside nature trail to the Point Vicente Interpretive Center.
Red Mountain Resort, St. George, Utah
Two hours from Las Vegas in St. George, Utah, Red Mountain Resort’s Sagestone Spa’s treatments are inspired by the red-rock desert surrounding the property. The Red Rock Hiker’s Massage targets the legs by applying a marine mud pack to draw out toxins, followed by a vigorous massage to increase circulation and magnesium gel to help with cramping and fatigue. The Vibrational Sound Therapy places Himalayan singing bowls on the body, allowing their vibrations to relax tense muscles. After, enjoy the relaxation room with large windows looking out to the serene Utah desert.
Osthoff Lake Resort, Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin
Aspira Spa at Wisconsin’s Osthoff Resort draws upon Eastern and local botanical knowledge to create such custom treatments as the Wild Chamomile/Ancient Cedar Body Treatment that begins with a cedar body scrub, then a hydrating wild chamomile and lavender body masque and reflexology massage, or the Moroccan-based Hammam cleansing ritual that begins with aromatherapy in the steam room, then a salt scrub and body shampoo. A Moroccan hot oil massage is administered after a warm shower. Reiki, acupuncture, Chakra balancing and other specialized treatments are available, as well as yoga classes.
Spa at Pebble Beach Resort, Pebble Beach, California
Golf may be the first thing that comes to mind when you hear Pebble Beach, but the Spa at Pebble Beach is a destination in and of itself. Golf-specific treatments such as the Post-Golf Therapy focus on forearms, neck, lower back and hips, and acupuncture alleviates pain and increases blood flow to stressed muscles. Plenty of other treatments cater to non-golfers as well, including the Papaya Pineapple Scrub that uses fruit and finely crushed grape seeds to exfoliate, and the Ocean Elements begins with a dry brushing followed by a mother-of-pearl, lime and bergamot salt scrub, scalp massage and seaweed mud wrap with scented oil. The Lasapa Lelima Purification Treatment is a cleansing ceremony inspired by Big Sur’s Esselen tribe, and uses locally grown sage, elderberry and blue corn meal as a scrub, followed by a wrap and massage. After your treatment, enjoy the hot tub or relaxation room with indoor firepit.