There’s nothing more relaxing than a day at the spa… unless, of course, you decide to take a complete spa vacation. That’s right, luxury spa resorts are becoming more and more widespread as luxury hotels and resorts look to spread their wings and appeal to larger audiences, which of course, means more opportunities for you to have the ultimate vacation experience.
But, as you would expect, with all good comes some bad. Although in this case, the bad isn’t really all that bad. Because there are so many hotels and resorts looking to expand their offerings, it broadens the field for what’s available. Depending on the practitioners hired by the hotel can also change the services offered at each of their spas, so choosing the best one can be a bit of a daunting task.
Luxury Link does a good job of listing the most luxurious spas in the world to give you a quick and easy way of browsing. It’s great for those who aren’t looking for anything in particular, just a nice vacation away that will let relax in a beautiful destination while (literally) in the hands of a spa professional.
The only problem with some sites like these is that there’s a bit of disjointedness when it comes to really defining what a “spa” is. Some spas focus exclusively on body relaxation techniques – massage, acupuncture, yoga and mobility treatments, etc. whereas other spas focus on beauty techniques. There’s really no right or wrong answer to this, but it’s important to find out which (if any) your destination focuses on. Ideally you’ll want to find one that can cover both – the ability to have a mani-pedi and a massage in the same day at the same place is a pretty fantastic treat.
What’s also worth noting is the activities provided at each of the destinations. If you’re a sports enthusiast, many golf-centric resorts will also have a spa on site that will pair a round of golf with a post-game massage. This is a great relaxing technique, especially for loosing up tight shoulders and backs after a good 18 holes. Not an experienced sports enthusiast? Not a problem – most hotels will also offer lessons at a lot of their properties and if you’re shaking off some rust due to inactivity, that massage will have never sounded better.
It’s also important to note what type of treatments they offer. The large range of massage treatments can make pinning down the best method a bit tricky. Your typical style of massage that will see is a Swedish massage – mainly because they last roughly 1 hour and will cover your entire body. In addition to this, you’ll also have the option to speak with your attendant to see what level of intensity you would like them to use. There’s nothing worse than lying down on a massage table, ready to relax, and having someone dig their elbow into your spine.
While these resorts are centralized around spas, or at the very least, have made a note to mention their spa in a heightened capacity, it’s important to remember that these bookings can fill up fast. If you’re planning a vacation around typical busy times (holidays, summer vacations, spring break, etc.) expect there to be a fair amount of bookings far in advance. Speak with the hotel concierge or the spa itself to see what times are available and where you’d like to fit yours in.
If a resort doesn’t offer a package deal for their spa, it never hurts to ask. Typically they’ll be able to give you some sort of discount, and with a longer stay that discount is typically larger. See what your resort can do for you and you’ll be sure to have a great time. It’s relaxation season, baby, and you’re about to enjoy it to its fullest.