Spas can be found the world over. From mountaintop getaways to beach side bungalows, serenity is key to these escapes from the everyday. While many have similar treatment accommodations, these eight luxury spas around the world really stand out by not only affording guests unique services and truly relaxing respites, but the facilities themselves from the architecture to location, integration of sight, sound, and scent. These are some of the top spas that truly go above and beyond.
Photo Credit: Park Weggis
Located on Lake Lucerne, this Asian-inspired spa is home to six private spa suites along a boardwalk adjacent to a Japanese rock garden. Complete with personal cold plunge and hot tub, steam room, and waterbed lounge, the private facilities are available in two-hour increments for up to four people. The sparkling infinity pool and outdoor lounge of the spa itself is also stunning, overlooking Lake Lucerne with plenty of outdoor and indoor lounge space at this wellness retreat in Switzerland.
Photo Credit: Grand Wailea
Truly one of my beloved spas on the globe, Spa Grande at Grand Wailea is home to over 50,000 square feet of unique relaxation. My favorite aspect is the Healing Waters Hydrotherapy Circuit—an experience guests can enjoy with a service or on its own. I have been known to spend all day in the spa doing just that. A blend of East meets West, the spa incorporates Greek soaking tubs and cold plunge pools, while Japanese furo showers and bubble pools lead seamlessly to the Hawaiian cascading waterfalls and five salt-infused baths inspired by the surrounding islands. A complimentary loofah scrub is also available and island spa treatments pepper the menu changing seasonally.
Photo Credit: Four Seasons Resort Orlando
Set in the luxurious Golden Oak neighborhood, Four Seasons Resort Orlando has tasteful touches of Disney without overdoing it. The spa is a step into serenity overlooking the surrounding lake and forests, with two waterside bungalows, relaxation lounges and surround showers. Guests feel worlds away from the surrounding theme parks, a welcome change of pace in the bustling Orlando area.
The Southern Ocean crashes below the seaside cliffs as guests look out to sea; the only thing between them and Antarctica deep blue waters. Walking along the boardwalk to the spa, spa-goers instantly are infused by nature, the low-lying brush and scents of wild grasses and salt air a preamble to services in the yurt-like spa atop the cliffs. One of the most freeing experiences was the floor-to-ceiling glass in the showers overlooking the ocean, feeling totally exposed to the elements as enveloped in steam.
Photo Credit: Brush Creek Ranch
There is something truly unique in having a couple’s massage in a teepee in the wide-open spaces of Wyoming. The scent of sage and soft flute music drifting in the still air; Brush Creek Ranch is situated on over 30,000 acres yet this intimate experience is cozy and comforting. The Dude Ranch feel couples with an impressive spa menu with personalized service under extensive blue skies and jaw-dropping scenery.
Photo Credit: Son Brull Boutique Hotel and Spa
Located within an 18th-century Jesuit Monastery. In addition to the vineyard and olive grove (try the house-made gin, it’s delectable), the contemporary design of the entire property suits the historic backdrop. The spa offers four treatment rooms and two in the outdoors during the summer; the facility is free for guests of the hotel to use or visitors can pay a small fee with or without a treatment. The infinity pool overlooking the surrounding hills and Mediterranean is not to be missed, as well as the dining experiences available on-site. An island on an island, guests can enjoy Son Brull Hotel and Spa without ever stepping foot off property.
Photo Credit: Dorado Beach, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve
Whether walking through the pineapple garden or receiving a therapy in one of the tree house treatment rooms or hammock massages, Spa Botanico is undoubtedly one of the best spas on the planet. From the five acres of tropical landscaping to the attentive service and beautiful facilities, guests enjoy everything from the cool tropical rain to the hot muggy air amidst natural rock outcroppings and thick forest vegetation. Lounge areas are complete with picture windows and day beds, perfect or snuggling up with a book, or bamboo buckets you can dump on yourself in the outdoor water area. Outdoor showers are opulent from the amenities to the thick fabrics draped of rich woods and metals. Finally, the treatment rooms are simply beautiful, incorporating the best of Puerto Rico’s natural beauty and design.
Photo Credit: Sofitel Legend Metropole Hanoi
Le Spa du Metropole at Sofitel Legend Metropole Hanoi, Vietnam
Deep within the bustling city of Hanoi, this urban oasis is a gem of Vietnam. The centralized courtyard acts as a paradise barricaded from sound as the property blends historic and contemporary aesthetics together. Le Spa du Metropole is no exception to the rich design components and even the commute to the spa has gentle elements such as the zero-entry pool. It’s no wonder Angelina Jolie loved this property so much (the restaurant is named after her); French service and Vietnamese hospitality blend effortlessly throughout the property, and the spa’s deep reds, dark woods and opulent pewter color pallet are simultaneously soothing and invigorating.