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Valentine’s Day is a popular time for hotels to offer packages with champagne and romance concierges (you know, to help your hopeless partner plan a romantic evening out), but it’s not as easy to find packages that include spa treatments and massages. Luckily, we’ve done the searching for you, and we’ve found some great budget options as well as some luxurious extravagances. For both a romantic and relaxing February 14 (or thereabouts), try out these hotels and spas, from East Coast to West.
The Budget Picks:
The Westin Beach Resort & Spa, Fort Lauderdale, FL
Sunsets on the beach are already dreamy, but the Westin Beach Resort & Spa is taking the swoon factor a few steps further with its “Rekindle Romance” package. It starts at only $319/night and is available for stays from February 10-15. What do you get? The package includes breakfast in bed, a visit to Shula’s on the Beach (for dinner, the Chef’s Tasting Menu, and wine!), champagne and strawberry turndown, and the Heavenly Healing couple’s spa treatment at the Heavenly Spa.
According to wellness magazine Healing Lifestyles & Spas, vinotherapy is quickly becoming one of the most popular spa categories in the United States. That’s because wine grapes are rich in antioxidants, stimulate circulation and also help heal damaged skin when applied topically.
While the concept originated in France and is especially popular in European spas, there are several great spas in the U.S. that specialize in wine-based treatments. You can take a bath in wine, exfoliate with wine, and even moisturize with wine! Some are located on properties with vineyards, while others are not. Some are day spas and some are destination spas (meaning you can sleep on the property, too). We always like a reason to travel, so here are four destination spas for oenophiles worth checking out:
Los Angeles offers more than glitz, glamour, and celebrity spotting. With its 75-mile-long coastline, temperate climes, and scenic canyons, spa-goers can also experience top-notch spa pampering with a view, with price tags ranging from the affordable to the astronomical.
Read on for our three top picks:
Crowne Plaza Redondo Beach and Marina Hotel
Body ETC European Day Spa within the Crowne Plaza Redondo Beach and Marina Hotel is an intimate eight-treatment room facility featuring a couples’ suite, locker room, and dry sauna. Its location on the hotel’s second floor is adjacent to the pool deck and Jacuzzi where the splendid views span the marina and the Pacific Ocean. Redondo Beach is only 8 miles from LAX and is known for its popular pier and numerous activities, which include kayaking, scuba diving, surfing, biking, fishing, and whale watching. Their spa package starts at $238/night and includes ocean-view accommodations, two desserts, 2-for-1 breakfast, and a European facial along with a body massage (or, a couples’ massage for two). www.cpredondobeachhotel.com Read more
When you book a trip to the recently opened Paradisus Resort in Playa del Carmen, be sure to visit the YHI Spa and Health Club, a 20,000-square-foot luxury oasis. The spa boasts 14 massage cabins, two outside cabins, and a Whirlpool bath for water treatments.
As you enter the YHI Spa, you are greeted by a warm staff of spa professionals and personal trainers. Enjoy a luxurious treatment, then relax in the complimentary Whirlpools, dry and wet saunas, and steam rooms. You can also purchase massage oils, makeup, incense, and other essentials at the Spa Boutique.
The YHI Spa offers both couple and individual massages and personal outdoor showers. My favorite features at YHI were the array of burning incense that created a different ambiance in every room. The spa also offers a great full-service salon for hair, makeup, manicures, and pedicures, which is perfect for guests who are getting married at the resort or simply want to look special for an evening out.
For general trip-planning information, see our Playa del Carmen Travel Guide.
Montage Deer Valley – Deer Valley, Utah
This classic Craftsman resort tucked in to the forested slopes of Utah’s Deer Valley Resort with its ski-in/ski-out access is a truly evocative spot, reminiscent of the great North American mountain lodges from another era.
The resort is a mere 36 miles from Park City International airport and minutes away from the charming and historical town of Park City, the epicenter for cinematic and celeb activity every January with the Sundance Film Festival.
Check in to one of Montage Deer Valley’s 154 guest rooms or spacious 66 suites with gas fireplaces and sweeping mountain views. Then walk out your door and onto the slopes of Deer Valley Resort with its 2,026 acres of skiable terrain on six mountains with 100 exciting trails and an annual drop of 300 inches of fresh powder each year. If you need some ski assistance, simply call the on-site ski-concierge.
These six sexy properties have played home away from home to everyone from the Obamas to Madonna, providing the perfect respite for royalty, rock stars, and heads of state. So, whether you are looking to globe trot, celebrity spot, or simply live in the lap of luxury, you may want to hunker down in one of these world class properties for otherworldly accommodations and simply the best spa treatments on the planet. Enjoy…
The Mandarin Oriental Miami sits on Brickell Key, a tiny peninsula that juts into Biscayne Bay, and whenever I am there it feels as if I am on a window-walled cruise ship, albeit one decorated with contemporary elegance, natural woods, bamboo-flooring, and rice paper decor. From the pool deck, it’s footsteps to the bay-front path that circles the property and from six of the fifth floor spa suites – including the couple’s suite and the Thai massage suites – the views of boats on the bay through enormous glass window walls are ever-so-much-more fascinating than an expanse of ocean.
Last week, I visited the Guerlain Spa at the Waldorf-Astoria New York to check out the recent renovations and sample the new signature Abeille Royale Expert Treatment. This is the queen of all facials – the Abeille Royale line of creams and serums, featured prominently in the treatment, makes use of a honey manufactured only by queen bees, among other bee products. The multi-step anti-aging process also involves a rice powder exfoliating scrub, thyme and tiger flower massage “stamps,” and a purifying peel.
News of the just-opened spa at The Chedi Muscat tempts me to spend a winter’s week spa-ing amidst sea and sand in Oman, a 105,000-square-mile country located on the Arabian Peninsula. Oman may be known for its UNESCO World Heritage Sites, markets, museums, and wadis (dry riverbeds), as well as a 1,000-mile long coastline and dramatic desert dunes that lead to rugged mountains. But this seasoned spa-goer predicts that this newly built facility establishes Oman’s credentials as a spa destination.
More than one million people – about one third of the population – live in Muscat, the capital city, where the English language is second to Arabic. About 20 minutes from the city’s historic heart, The Chedi Muscat sits on a 21-acre private beach-front estate facing the Gulf of Oman and backed by the Hajar Mountains. The 158-room resort provides sumptuous, contemporary accommodations in two story villas, six restaurants, floodlit tennis courts, and three pools including the stunning 300-foot-plus, palm-lined Long Pool. Its dazzling Arabian Nights design features stark white buildings punctuated by columns, pointed arches and vaulted ceilings with minaret-style chandeliers.
While many spa-goers want to channel a healthful, Zen vibe, there’s an entirely different group – group being the operative word – looking to turn up the volume a bit and raise more than just a glass of lemon water as they enjoy some pampering. Hence, the rise of the “social spa,” with public and/or private areas designed for pre- and post-treatment lounging, soaking, chitchatting, and sipping. They are ideal for girlfriends’ getaways and bachelorette parties, and here’s a small sampling:
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