Everyone needs a great spa day every once in a while. But, how about planning a spa travel journey to a place where you can have a remarkable spa treatment elevated by a unique experience? Our own spa travel expert, Gnational Gnomad Ava Roxanne Stritt of Spa Travel Gal, gives us the inside scoop on spa treatments that will delight multiple senses all at the same time.
You may be able to head down the street for a facial or a massage, but now is the time to plan a trip to one of these Bucket List Experiences for Spa Lovers and truly give yourself a treat. Pick your favorites and start planning your bucket list spa experience today.
Imagine you have a spa appointment at a luxury spa for some much needed me time and you are super excited. Then, add on top of that the fact that you just came in from the ski slopes, dropped your equipment by the ski concierge, and in just a few short steps you have arrived at a slope-side spa to receive a spa treatment to relieve any tension you have in your body. That alone should give spa lovers a tingle … but wait there’s more.
At The Ritz-Carlton Lake Tahoe you can also add to your apres ski recovery time a soak in a copper tub … so special there are only 10 in the world! If you book the Tranquility for Two spa treatment, you can add on the “Copper Tub Experience.” I promise you this is a bucket list experience for sure. Your spa suite for two is extremely spacious, with floor-to-ceiling one-way glass that allows you to view the snowfall outdoors — and any skilled skiers that may stray from the marked routes. Seeing the snow fall as you are relaxing in the warm flow of the bubbles in the waters enhanced by the copper minerals of the tub makes this surreal experience all so relaxing.
The tub is made of copper, which has enhancing benefits ranging from antioxidant to anti-inflammatory. It also helps to neutralize toxins. All of this I was greatly in need of after being on three flights that day starting at 4 a.m. Afterwards, I felt like I did not have a care in the world. I think my skilled massage therapist had a lot to do with that too!
Salish Sea Sustainable Seaweed
Have you ever journeyed to Victoria, Canada? This historical city on Vancouver Island needs to be on your radar for many reasons. Sustainability is top of mind here for all — even when it comes to spa treatments. For those who want to see where their spa treatment products are sourced — this has to be the number one place for you to get involved in your own sustainable self care. You may have done farm-to-table, but have you experienced seaweed-to-spa?
Our journey started out at the Fairmont Empress, one of the most iconic hotels in the world. This queen of a hotel offers some of my favorite luxury moments. Yes I was extremely impressed by their Willow Stream Spa, Fairmont Gold Floor Lounge and even Winston their resident dog, but what became one of my top spa travel experiences ever was a trip to a lavender farm — Bilston Creek Farm. Here we partook in small bath lavender distilling, “Tea at the Empress” to-go, and a hike to the Salish Sea on the Sitting Lady Waterfall trail. It was exciting to see the sea where the seaweed was foraged that would be used for our spa treatment later that afternoon.
Adam Butcher of Seaflora Skincare not only told us why organic seaweed is one of the best things to put on your skin, he allowed us to smell, see and touch it ourselves. It is not smelly or slimy. It actually feels extremely refreshing on your skin. Some of the benefits of seaweed skincare are detoxification, mineralization, balancing of pH level, lowering inflammation and promoting overall health. Just knowing that it was both sustainable and the best choice for organic skincare, made me eager to receive a spa treatment with something foraged so near a luxury spa. The seaweed harvest happens various times throughout the year. I plan to return to partake in one of these sustainable environmental preservation harvests myself one day soon. You should plan a tour for yourself, too.
When you visit The Fairmont Empress Willow Stream Spa in Victoria, you must reserve the Salish Sea Vitality Body Spa Treatment. With the knowledge of locally-sourced sustainable products doing their goodness on your body soon — your anticipation will be rewarded. Your seaweed journey began in the waters off Vancouver Island and is now partaking in an invigorating body scrub. While the seaweed is working to remove impurities from your body, you will be tempted to drift away as if at sea yourself … but stay awake since you would not want to miss a moment of this extensive authentic experience which also includes a nourishing full body wrap. The wrap insures your body can soak up all the power of the Seaflora seaweed gel from head to toe. Seaweed chamois will be placed strategically inside your wrap on areas to get a more potent result.
While you are relaxing in the wrap, a scalp massage ensures your total relaxation during this coastal journey. After your wrap, you will be lead to a multi-head shower with your seaweed chamois to rinse off. Once done, return to the warmth of your massage table and experience one of the most detailed and skilled massages in North America. My German massage therapist released my tension better than anyone had ever accomplished. She slathered my dry skin with the nourishment of the sea kelp lotion. The result of these antioxidants and vitamins refreshed both my body and my soul. I departed with some seaweed chamois of my own to take home.
Now let’s chat about salt — sometimes you need more than a pinch, no matter what Martha Stewart says. The benefits of salt therapy are almost too many to list here. Did you know that the nutrients found in salt are essential to your skin, immune system, circulation and body to both replenish moisture and offset harmful toxins we naturally ingest. So one may ask – what do I do, eat more? NO! You want to inhale the benefits of salt. AND where can you do this? Luckily many hotel spas are adding salt rooms or salt walls to their amenities.
One of the best salt therapy rooms I have visited is at Spa Toscana at the Peppermill Resort in Reno. Take a look here at my Spa Travel IGTV video tour of their Himalayan Retreat Salt Therapy room. While relaxing there you can refresh yourself with spa water, while knowing your results may include reduced stress and headaches, improved respiratory conditions such as asthma, allergies and sinus congestion (my favorite) and also improved skin conditions such as psoriasis, rashes, eczema and acne. Afterwards relax in a very well stocked spa lounge which included my favorite sparkling water — Italian brand Pellegrino, then treat yourself to a Hydra-facial at this multi-level 30,000 square feet Mediterranean spa with a Roman Caldarium.
You can also find an amazing salt therapy room at The Ritz-Carlton Charlotte. I have breaking spa news that the Westin Nashville will be adding a salt wall to their sauna by this summer. I have never left a salt room without feeling less congested. Try to enjoy it both before and after your spa treatment when visiting a luxury spa.
Before I even let you in on one of the newest and most innovative facials to come over from Paris, I must tell you I almost did not want to leave my room. When a room beckons you to stay it must be special, but then everything makes one feel special at the Fairmont Pacific Rim in Vancouver, Canada. Treat yourself to a Signature Ofuro Room with stunning panoramic views and you may never leave. The enormous jetted deep soaking tub has water views of Vancouver. But Vancouver has so much to offer like the Royal Dinette, so you must get out. Here you will find one of the world’s top bartenders and Canada’s #1 bartender – Kailyn Stewart. Spending the day at Stanley Park on bikes is also a reason to leave your room and check something else off your bucket list.
Back to your facial – this new cool style of facial is perfect for spring, summer and fall. It uses room temperature to cool water during all phases. This allows your skin to accept all the goodness of the Biologique Recherche skin care products more efficiently. The VIP O2 luxurious and oxygenating facial will balance your skin. It felt to me like the perfect combination of exfoliation, oxygenation and bio-energy massage to leave me glowing for days. All inflammation is gone from your skin. Plan this bucket list spa treatment and be one of the first in North America to experience it.
Warm Your Soul
So if Vancouver is the place for your cool facial, Lake Tahoe is definitely the place to warm your soul during one. Recently, I was at The Landing at Lake Tahoe and their Spa in Lake Tahoe literally warmed my soul and brought my face back alive.
After a day snowmobiling, wind burn had done a number on my face where it was exposed. After a full day up on the ridge above Lake Tahoe exposed to the elements, more than my face needed relief. I was in good hands at the Spa at The Landings. Their extremely skilled esthetician customized my Elevation Anti-Aging Facial using organic Hungarian Eminence Skincare Products. This is one of the top organic brands found anywhere in the world.
The skill of the therapist and the warmth of the fireplace in the room revitalized both my face and my mind to be able to continue to explore Lake Tahoe. Afterwards, I had a remarkable dinner at Jimmy’s Restaurant that also offers live music many evenings. Don’t miss this local favorite right inside your hotel.
Now are you ready to venture out and have your own Bucket List Experiences for Spa Lovers? AND don’t forget — men spa too!
Ava Roxanne Stritt of Spa Travel Gal is an official Travelocity Gnational Gnomad. Gnational Gnomads is an exclusive group of high profile travel and lifestyle experts who offer tips and inspiration on behalf of Travelocity.
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