I recently had an opportunity to experience the Spa at the New Otani Hotel in Tokyo Japan. The Japanese treat spas a little differently than in the western world. The “Spa” for all that the word represents is something that is an integral part of Japanese life, particularly for women. Not treated so much as a luxury item even though it can be expensive to experience one depending on where you are, life in the sauna or hot tub is an important part of health, relaxation and down time.
Spas are also more formal than they are in the states and even Europe, where I find the service to also be a notch above the U.S. The New Otani Hotel is a luxurious stay (see our write-up
on the property which we loved and would definitely recommend, including having a meal at any of their on-site restaurants – YUM!!). The spa at the New Otani
is an extensive of that luxury — from the offerings, the service and the amenities.
Use of the spa includes rental fee for gym wear, swimsuits, towel, and bathrobe which of course they expect
While we were staying at the Cape Codder Resort in Hyannis, I had an opportunity to try out the Beach Plum Spa
. While the property touts all the amenities and treasures that a family resort can offer (meaning it caters heavily to families), the sanctuary in the spa makes you feel as if you’re miles away from stress – it’s pure peace and tranquility.
The spa is a full service spa, and is so extensive in its offerings that it provides an extensive menu of services for men, women and yes, even children. They offer day and overnight packages as well and their body products are all natural or 100% certified organic. And, they must be busy since they’re open seven days a week year round.
One thing to note in my particular treatment is that I didn’t feel like just another client — they really listened to what was going on with your skin and your muscles to see how they could best customize something that will best work with you. I also left with a fun array of samples to test out.
The offerings and services include holistic…
Most people think of yoga as a turning inward, a solitary practice aimed at developing self-awareness and reflection. People practice yoga to find peace and improve wellness; but ultimately, to feel truly serene, you need to feel united and at home with your environment. Instead of isolating you from your surroundings, these trips connect you with local people, traditions and cultures to help you feel grounded, even in foreign settings. Seek more meaningful encounters than ordinary yoga retreats of personal discovery, as these trips allow you to try something new, broaden your horizons and connect to people with different perspectives.
Join the Balinese in firework displays and excitement before a day of silence to celebrate their new year. Participate in the sacred Incan fire ceremony. Volunteer at a home for abused women and the homeless in Greece… then celebrate all of your blessings by learning Greek dance! With these cultural immersion trips, you will stretch more than your limbs. In fact, you will emerge as a much more well-rounded person by the time you return home.
Stimulate Your Inner Incan Fire (Cusco, Peru)
The Ritz Carlton Spa Westchester
is worth making the effort to visit from New York City for the service alone. The Ritz Carlton is located in White Plains NY which means that it’s an easy and seamless train ride from Manhattan on the Metro North Line, or…if you’re exploring Westchester County which I recommend you do, especially in the fall, consider it for a luxury stay-over and take in a spa treatment while you’re there. The property features a 10,000 square-foot luxury spa, fitness center and rooftop indoor swimming pool along with a full service salon and spa boutique. In other words, they go far beyond the traditional spa offerings.
They carry the Claudio Riaz’ line of cosmetics, which includes patented brushes, make-up and luxury beauty products. I had an opportunity to play a bit with the make-up artist while she did a bit more than just brighten up my face. Apparently each brush is hand-crafted from top notch materials and his make-up line includes an array of concealers, complexion highlighters, eye shades and lip and cheek colors. I had a lot of fun watching her work!
Services include pedicures, manicures, nail enhancements, personal…
In July, I had a unique opportunity to stay the incredible 5 star New Otani Hotel
in Tokyo Japan
, which is part of the Otani chain of hotels headquartered in Chiyoda, Tokyo, Japan. New Otani Hotels operates 18 hotels in Japan and two hotels outside of Japan. The flagship hotel in Tokyo has been around since 1964 and their management is nothing short of top notch.
The service is beyond exceptional….but it doesn’t stop there. Upon arrival, I was escorted to my room by the hotel manager since my flight was so late and I managed to catch the last limo bus of the night which put me into the center of Tokyo well after 11.
One of the first things I fell in love with beside the ability to manage every light from a series of controls next to the bed, was the heated toilet seats. I soon learned that heated toilet seats were a big part of Japanese culture, at the very least Tokyo culture. I ran into heated toilet seats throughout the city in various establishments and each one had a number of controls which were far too complex for the…
If you haven’t been to the Plaza Athenee Hotel
on New York City’s Upper East Side, you’re in for a real treat. While we didn’t stay at the hotel during our most recent trip in late June, we did test out the hotel’s spa – Spa Valmont
. For those of you who know anything about the Valmont spa philosophy and high quality products, you know that the quality is top notch.
for Plaza Athenee is the only luxury hotel spa in New York City to exclusively carry Valmont Cosmetics skin care lines. Skin enthusiasts likely know about Valmont, a line which was created in Switzerland as far back as 1985. Valmont is known for its scientifically advanced skincare products, incorporating cutting-edge Swiss technological research and Glacial Spring Water into all of their luxurious products.
In line with its commitment to luxury products and a luxurious experience, all the rooms are private. The spa features four Asian themed private treatment suites sumptuously designed with natural elements. Each treatment area is for you alone and in addition to the room itself with the spa “bed,”
you have a suite to yourself, which contains a
If there’s anything more delightful than a spa treatment, it’s a flavorful one. Hilton Worldwide hotels in the Caribbean and Latin America are joining the trend with these specials:
Chocolate Spa at Hilton Buenos Aires, Argentina – After a bath salt whirlpool session and a few minutes in an oxygen cabin, guests enjoy a 50-minute cocoa massage or facial followed by a hair treatment with chocolate products. This four-hour aromatic experience is available for US$99.
Mezcal Herb Spa Retreat at Hilton Mexico City Reforma’s Spa Alameda – A Mexican spa tradition, this 60-minute treatment features a massage using medicinal native herbs for US$115.
Ice Cream Pedicure at Mexico’s Hilton Los Cabos Beach & Golf Resort’s Spa Oasis – A 50-minute “sweet experience” with zero carbs and calories offers deliciously-scented foot scrubs and masks, followed by a candy-colored array of shades for toes, for US$60.
(Photo courtesy of Hilton Los Cabos)
Not all spas are created equal. For those looking to truly indulge, there are certain spas around the world that offer decadent offerings. And for those with a sweet tooth, a luxurious chocolate treatment may be just what you need.
To help you have a delicious spa experience, here are six of the world’s top chocolate spas.
The Spa At The Hotel Hershey, Hershey, Pennsylvania
Aptly nicknamed the “Chocolate Spa,” The Spa At The Hotel Hershey is a three-story, European-style spa renowned for its wide range of sweet treatments, with everything from chocolate massages to cocoa body wraps, facials, manicures, pedicures, scrubs, polishes and hydrotherapy, all with a chocolate twist.
While it’s difficult to choose with so many decadent options, I recommend the “Chocolate Fondue Wrap.” The treatment is like being packaged like a Hershey Bar, as rich fondue is applied to the skin and then you’re wrapped in a warm blanket. The experience ends with a cleansing Vichy Shower. Other notable menu items include the “Whipped Cocoa Bath,” which is like steeping yourself in an indulgent cup of hot chocolate, and the “Cocoa Facial Experience” where an edible dark chocolate mask is…
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