Travel

Go for the Hotel—but Stay for the Spa Treatment

Written by: Brianna Peters

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Published on: July 20, 2023

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There are great hotels. And then there are great hotels with great spas. We love both, but we really love a vacation where we come back feeling healthier—with better skin, calmer minds, new insights, and even less jet lag—as well as indulged. Here, a collection of particularly fantastic hotels that happen to have next-level spas, plus our favorite treatments to get there.

Bonus: We’ve made serious beauty discoveries at every one of these places, so definitely leave room in your bag to bring back some of the best of the best in clean beauty.

THE SPA:

Auberge Spa at Mauna Lani, Auberge Resorts Collection

WHERE:

Waimea, Hawaii

The only place in the world you can get the exclusive goop Glow Facial, Mauna Lani on the Big Island’s Kohala Coast is one of the dreamiest Hawaiian destinations there is. Beyond the candy-colored sunrises, stunning views of the Mauna Kea volcano, and impossibly delicious house-made ceviche, it also has the only goop store in Hawaii—stocked with the chicest G. Label, clean sunscreen, goop Beauty and Wellness goodies, and more.

THE TREATMENT:

In the gorgeous, airy spa, the goop Glow Facial—a sculpting face massage followed by skin-polishing exfoliation and intense moisturization—leaves your skin impossibly soft, smooth, and glowy.

Take It Home

  1. goop Beauty
    Microderm Instant Glow Exfoliator
    $125.00/$112.00 with subscriptionSHOP NOW
  2. goop Beauty
    20% Vitamin C + Hyaluronic Acid Glow Serum
    $125.00/$112.00 with subscriptionSHOP NOW
  3. goop Beauty
    All-in-One Super Nutrient Face Oil
    $98.00/$89.00 with subscriptionSHOP NOW

 

THE SPA:

The Well at Chileno Bay, Auberge Resorts Collection

WHERE:

Los Cabos, Mexico

Along with breathtaking views of the Sea of Cortez, alfresco four-course washoku dinners, and seasonal whale watching, one of the highlights here is a 22-acre outpost of The Well spa. There’s a bathhouse with a hydrothermal circuit experience composed of a cold plunge, aromatherapy steam room, Himalayan salt sauna, ice bar, and vitality pool. There’s also an outdoor nap garden (has anything ever sounded so glorious?), a reflexology pool, and more. Visiting healers and practitioners run outstanding workshops, while celestial bathing, ashiatsu massage, and customized bodywork are all on the regular menu.

THE TREATMENT:

We love The Method facial, which pairs manual lymphatic drainage and massage with the rejuvenating LYMA laser for beautiful, radiant, healthy-looking skin. If you can, add on the infrared body-blanket treatment. Note: If you’re LA-based, it’s only a few hours’ flight, making it a sweet little weekend escape for West Coasters.

Take It Home

  1. LYMA
    LYMA Laser Starter Kit
    goop, $2,695SHOP NOW
  2. HigherDOSE
    Infrared Sauna Blanket V4
    goop, $699SHOP NOW

 

THE SPA:

Aman Spa and Hammam and Banya Spa Houses at Aman New York

WHERE:

New York City

It’s enormous: The giant indoor lap pool is as glamorous as it gets, the Japanese omakase restaurant is one of the best in the city, the wide outdoor courtyards are stunning for drinks or for yoga, and the rooms overlook Fifth Avenue, the skyline, Central Park, and—hello—Bergdorf’s. And the spa has absolutely everything, from next-level facial and massage therapies.

THE TREATMENT:

Add a cryo treatment to any service you get (they’re all amazing): There’s a chic-as-hell windowed cold-therapy room where a handsome therapist outfits you in boots, mitts, and a wool cap; sets you up with a playlist; then coaches you through a freezing yet exhilarating three minutes of serious cold air (little snowflakes float by).

TAKE IT HOME:

The products—all by Aman—are incredible, especially the body oil.


 

THE SPA:

Passalacqua

WHERE:

Lake Como, Italy

Overlooking a postcard view of Lake Como with flowering gardens, olive groves, and charming lakeside villas, Passalacqua is both sumptuous and intimate, with frescoed suites, green lily-petal parasols to shade you by the pool, and a stunning greenhouse designed by JJ Martin of La DoubleJ. There’s also a secret 18th-century vaulted stone chamber beneath the gardens that connects the property’s three buildings—the Palazz, Villa, and Casa al Lago—and houses the epic sauna and steam baths. (The Palazz is where you’ll find the spa, which offers all manner of treatments, many engineered by skin whisperer Dr. Barbara Sturm.)

THE TREATMENT:

The star of the spa is the signature glow facial, which starts with an exquisite cleanse, exfoliation, and extractions before cocooning the skin in moisture with a heavenly massage (that feels absolutely incredible). It leaves skin smooth, supple, sculpted, and absolutely luminous.

Take It Home

  1. Dr. Barbara Sturm
    Hyaluronic Serum
    goop, $325SHOP NOW
  2. Dr. Barbara Sturm
    Face Mask
    goop, $150SHOP NOW
  3. Dr. Barbara Sturm
    Glow Drops
    goop, $150SHOP NOW

 

THE SPA:

Surya Spa at Santa Monica Proper

WHERE:

Santa Monica, California

It’s no secret we’re in love with the Proper hotel. The Kelly Wearstler–designed gem is where we first discovered our favorite-ever brow wizard, Jimena Garcia; where we go for some of the healthiest, most delicious food in LA (at the rooftop restaurant Calabra); and where the rooms have the best views in Santa Monica. But the flagship Surya Spa is one of the outstanding legit-Ayurvedic spas in America. Also Kelly Wearstler–designed, it’s an enchanting space in which to get therapeutic massage, steam and oil treatments, cooking lessons, personalized dosha yoga consultations, and more.

THE TREATMENT:

Ranging from 3 to 28 days, the cleansing Panchakarma detox wellness programs are the biggest draw: For up to four hours a day, you go for custom restorative treatments, detox, and healing experiences like private yoga, sound baths, Qigong, breathwork, energetic healing, and more. Founder Martha Soffer is famous for her profound, transformative results—you will leave a different person.

Whether or not you do the Panchakarma, Surya’s products are absolutely incredible. The collagen cream is hands down the richest cream we’ve ever tried, and the bath soaks are the ultimate luxury (the whole box equals one fantastic bath). There are custom oils prescribed during treatments, an iPad to take notes on that then emails you everything you wrote, and, perhaps most legendary, unbelievably delicious almond-flour spa breads that often sell out.

Take It Home

  1. Surya
    Discovery Kit
    goop, $155SHOP NOW
  2. Surya
    Balancing Collagen Cream
    goop, $195SHOP NOW
  3. Surya
    Muscle Relief Bath Soak
    goop, $35SHOP NOW

 

THE SPA:

Jumby Bay Spa at Jumby Bay Island

WHERE:

Antigua

Set on a private island in the Caribbean (it’s two miles off mainland Antigua and reachable only by boat) and enclosed in lush tropical foliage, Jumby Bay has 4.5 miles of powdery shoreline that are completely surrounded by crystal-blue coral-reef-sprinkled water. Every suite has a private plunge pool, and beautiful winding bike paths (the whole resort is brilliantly carless) take you right to the spa for sunrise yoga or breathwork or a treatment in a room with views of the ocean (you can actually hear the waves and breathe in the salt air).

THE TREATMENT:

Get the facial (Tata Harper–designed, of course) with face-mapping therapy, exfoliation, massage, skin-reviving botanicals, and deep moisture.

Take It Home

  1. Tata Harper
    Regenerating Cleanser
    goop, $88SHOP NOW
  2. Tata Harper
    Hydrating Floral Mask
    $95.00SHOP NOW
  3. Tata Harper
    Water-Lock Moisturizer Starter Kit
    goop, $68SHOP NOW

 

THE SPA:

Six Senses Rome

WHERE:

Rome, Italy

Right in the heart of Rome, this ultraluxe new Six Senses feels secluded from all the bustle, thanks in part to the spectacular serene spa. The Roman baths are amazing (there are three plunge pools—calidarium, tepidarium, and frigidarium—that you do in an hour-long circuit), as are the treatments.

THE TREATMENT:

The Cocoon starts with a soothing foot soak, followed by a gently exfoliating full-body brush-down and indulgent massage with our favorite rose-and-vanilla candle that, once lit, transforms into a nourishing body oil. As your body is wrapped in skin-loving moisture, there’s also a mini facial for glowing skin.

Take It Home

  1. goop Beauty
    Ultimate Dry Brush
    goop, $25SHOP NOW
  2. Seed to Skin
    The Massage Candle
    goop, $71SHOP NOW

 

THE SPA:

Seawater Spa at Gurney’s Montauk

WHERE:

Montauk, New York

As Montauk evolved from a fishing village into the full Hamptons destination it is today, the famous Gurney’s Inn was renovating itself into a sophisticated, laid-back wellness hot spot. The Seawater Spa is now 30,000 square feet, with the only ocean-fed seawater pool in North America and an enormous bathhouse with a sauna, three plunge pools, and a steam room—plus some really extraordinary spa treatments, all inspired by the ocean.

THE TREATMENT:

We love the High Performance Resurfacing Facial, which harnesses the power of Dr. Dennis Gross’s LED mask with a burst of light therapy to help clear breakouts, calm redness, and stimulate collagen. Don’t forget to grab the brand’s lightweight mineral SPF 50 on your way out (you’re at the beach, after all).

Take It Home

  1. Dr. Dennis Gross
    DRx SpectraLite™ FaceWare Pro
    goop, $455SHOP NOW
  2. Dr. Dennis Gross
    All-Physical Ultimate Defense Sunscreen SPF 50
    goop, $42SHOP NOW

 

THE SPA:

Verbena Spa at Austin Proper

WHERE:

Austin, Texas

We love everything about the Austin Proper: the rooftop pool, the best views of Lady Bird Lake, the laid-back vibe, the specialty cocktails, the crispy shallot hummus at the Peacock restaurant, and most of all, the chic, intimate Verbena spa.

THE TREATMENT:

Get the Proper Facial—a skin-soothing 60 minutes of cleansing, exfoliating, masking, toning, and moisturizing with Monastery Made’s super rich, hydrating Attar balm; custom detoxifying clay and hydrating masks (made specifically for the spa); hyaluronic-acid-infused Flora Botanical Cream Serum; and Saint Jane’s featherweight Petal Cream and body cream (the latter is for an epic hand-arm massage). You can add on a TheraFace PRO session with percussive massage, heat, and cryotherapy treatments. You finish with Saint Jane’s creamy Luxury Sun Ritual SPF before you walk out the door.

Take It Home

  1. Monastery Made
    Attar Floral Concentrate Balm
    $168.00SHOP NOW
  2. Saint Jane
    Hydrabloom Body Silk
    goop, $48SHOP NOW
  3. Therabody
    TheraFace PRO
    goop, $399SHOP NOW

 

THE SPA:

Canyon Ranch

WHERE:

Lenox, Massachusetts

Set on a hilltop in the Berkshires, the Bellefontaine Mansion was built as a private residence during the Gilded Age, then was transformed into this immersive wellness retreat on 120 acres. But don’t miss days luxuriating in the 100,000-square-foot spa.

THE TREATMENT:

There’s a signature full-body massage done with Kate McLeod’s Body Stone—it melts right in, leaving soft, supple skin (at the end of the treatment, you get to take the rest of the Body Stone with you). There are a total of 14 facials, but our favorite is the Venn Collagen Facial, which layers peptides, antioxidants, and phytoretinols to reduce the look of lines, even skin tone, and plump.

Take It Home

  1. Kate McLeod
    The Daily Stone
    goop, $45SHOP NOW
  2. VENN
    Collagen Intensive Phyto-Retinol Renewal Sheet Mask
    goop, $47SHOP NOW
  3. VENN
    Collagen Intensive Phyto-Retinol Resurfacing Mask
    goop, $120SHOP NOW

 

THE SPA:

The Ritz-Carlton Spa New York, NoMad

WHERE:

New York City

On the edge of New York’s Chelsea flower district, the new Ritz-Carlton New York, NoMad pays homage to its location with flowers everywhere, from the lush foliage surrounding the bar to the ingredients in the spa treatments. (There’s also a champagne and caviar service overlooking the skyline, cloudlike beds, and a delicious Turkish-Greek-Lebanese restaurant, Zaytinya, by José Andrés.) The spa is an underground oasis where you can sauna, steam, and relax all day.

THE TREATMENT:

The signature facial was designed by Augustinus Bader and starts with a foamy dollop of the fluffy whipped gel-cream cleanser, moving to the gel-cream mask, silky serum, and luxe Rich Cream. Your skin will be the softest and supplest it’s ever been, and the glow will last you through the week. And, in keeping with the flower theme, the full-body exfoliation plus body-and-scalp-massage treatment called the Rose Quartz Remedy is followed by a sensory experience with frangipani, rose geranium, and palmarosa essential oils.

Take It Home

  1. Augustinus Bader
    The Cream Cleansing Gel
    goop, $73SHOP NOW
  2. Augustinus Bader
    The Face Cream Mask
    goop, $220SHOP NOW
  3. Augustinus Bader
    The Rich Cream
    $290.00SHOP NOW

 

THE SPA:

Six Senses Douro Valley

WHERE:

Douro Valley, Portugal

The activities at the spectacular riverside Six Senses Douro Valley are many, the food is incredible, and the combination of minimalist interiors and historic architecture is stunning, but the standout experience is the spa and its many treatments.

THE TREATMENT:

The lymphatic drainage facial with incredible Seed to Skin products leaves you sculpted, refreshed, and radiant. And don’t miss the full hot and cold water and sauna therapy suite with a hot tub, cold plunge, pool with underwater sound and chromatherapy, Clearlight infrared sauna, salt room, steam room, and Finnish sauna; ice baths; and more.

Take It Home

  1. Seed to Skin
    The Balance
    goop, $77SHOP NOW
  2. Seed to Skin
    The Dew Mist
    goop, $23.10SHOP NOW

 

THE SPA:

Dr. Barbara Sturm Spa at The Mark

WHERE:

New York City

Glamorous suites, the legendary twice-baked potato with caviar from Kaspia delivered via room service, and a Frédéric Fekkai blowout bar are just a few of the reasons we’re obsessed with The Mark.

THE TREATMENT:

At The Mark, treatments work just like the room service—you call and an aesthetician from the Dr. Barbara Sturm Madison Avenue Spa (right next door) arrives to do them in the comfort of your suite. The best is the signature Sturm glow facial: cleansing, buffing, exfoliating, masking, and moisturizing (each treatment is tailored to your skin concerns) for visibly lifted, sculpted, radiant skin.

Take It Home

  1. Dr. Barbara Sturm
    Enzyme Cleanser
    goop, $80SHOP NOW
  2. Dr. Barbara Sturm
    The Better B Niacinamide Serum
    goop, $160SHOP NOW