Top Ten Speciality Spas

Spas are in, and no 21st-century resort can afford to be without one. While you can be massaged, exfoliated, and pampered in thousands of establishments in hundreds of locales, there are some spas that reach beyond the ordinary, making them standouts on the ever growing spa circuit. Here, our ten favorites.
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Spa treatment room at Capella Telluride, Colorado
ROCKY MOUNTAIN RELAXATION: Spa treatment room at Capella Telluride  (courtesy, Capella Telluride)

10. Fiesta Americana Somma Wine Spa
Los Cabos, Mexico
At the Fiesta Americana Grand Resort in Los Cabos, located on Mexico's Baja Peninsula, an area perfect for growing and harvesting grapes, wine is not only for drinking. Its Somma Wine Spa is one of only a handful of spas worldwide that specializes in Vinotherapy. Vinotherapy is based on the belief that when grape juice and polyphenol extracts from the grape seeds, which contain high levels of antioxidants and natural substances derived from the fermentation process, are applied to the body it helps to prevent and fight the aging of skin. Fans of red wine will want to try the Merlot wine therapy massage, while white wine aficionados can sign up for the Chardonnay. Wine wraps are topped off with a Chardonnay-infused bubble bath. After a Vinotherapy spa experience, consider sampling some wines from the resort's Baja Vineyard.

9. Okeanos Spa
New York City, New York
A Russian proverb declares, "A day in the banya is a day without aging," and New Yorkers can enjoy a traditional Russian Banya (bathhouse) experience without shelling out airfare to Moscow. At Okeanos Spa in Manhattan, the centuries-old ritual begins with a sweat in a fiery sauna, follows with revitalization provided by a light flogging with bundled birch leaves, and ends with a dip in a cold water pool. If this isn't enough to recharge your batteries, you can add a Black Sea salt scrub or an invigorating massage using Siberian Ginseng. But surely the most unusual treatment is the caviar wrap. Based on the belief that Russian caviar is good for reconditioning the skin, the much sought after fish eggs are used in a wrap that will leave your skin feeling silky and youthful, not to mention leaving you craving a snack of the primary ingredient.

8. Capella Telluride
Telluride, Colorado
In Telluride, Colorado, there are more ways than one to get a caffeine high. Of course there's the usual way, by slipping into one of the town's coffee emporiums for a designer cuppa, but who'd have thought you could also get a buzz from a spa treatment? At the Capella Telluride you can be exfoliated with the grounds of your favorite beverage. A spinoff of a traditional Russian bathhouse treatment, the session begins with a steam in a very toasty sauna. Once all of your pores have been shocked open, ground coffee and oils go to work to scrub away the dead skin. This is followed by a green coffee detoxifying body wrap, plus a final trip to the sauna. You emerge energized by the coffee absorbed into your system and smelling ever so slightly like a designer latte.

7. Mii amo
Sedona, Arizona
Sedona, Arizona, has long been known as a place of unique spiritual power caused by vortex sites, places where strong energy flow is thought to exist on multiple dimensions. So it's no surprise that Mii amo—a Native American word meaning "one's path" or "journey"—spa, surrounded by the Red Rock Secret Mountain Wilderness, focuses on healing and restorative treatments for both the body and the mind. Like the area itself, treatments are far from usual and about as New Age as you can get. A color balancing massage starts with a color reading based on your choice of four "Equilibrium Oils." Couples learn to value each other's qualities by participating in the Relationship Reading treatment. And, if you're curious about your past lives, you can be hypnotized and guided through a series of explorations with a certified therapist during the Past Life Regression treatment.

6. Saguaro Day Spa
Door County, Wisconsin
Perhaps an Ayurveda spa treatment isn't the first thing that comes to mind for an activity in northern Wisconsin, but at the Saguaro Day Spa in Door County, you can do just that. An ancient Indian system of health care, Ayurvedic treatments are thought to regenerate balance and remove toxicity from the system. One of the most traditional Ayurvedic treatments is the head massage. At Saguaro the head, face, neck, and shoulders are massaged using essential oils to relieve stress and tension as the entire body becomes cleansed and rebalanced. During Saguaro's Ayurvedic massage treatment, all-natural products, based on those used in ancient India, are used to stimulate the senses and promote self-awareness and balance.

Published: 18 Feb 2010 | Last Updated: 9 Nov 2011
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication
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