Salons and Spas

April 1, 2005 by  
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Whether you are getting out of town or just going down the street, these relaxing retreats provide the answers to life’s hard muscles

Taking time out to pamper your body and soul can be one of the most important indulgences you make. A day at the spa gives you time to relax, re-evaluate and rejuvenate – so you can start fresh (and with a positive outlook) tomorrow. Whether you choose a spa around the corner from your office or on the other side of the world, remember that it’s worth it.

Roads to wellness
Give yourself permission to feel complete and reconnect with yourself as you enjoy hours of bliss at some terrific spas. It’s not just another day at the office in the search for the ultimate indulgence.

SháNah Spa: In harmony
Your mind and body will fall into perfect balance at this intimate new spa on the historic Bishop’s Lodge property in New Mexico. Rich with Native American traditions and healing rituals, this abundant area is steep with knowledgeable spa therapists who immediately tune in to your body’s needs at SháNah Spa.

Of special note is the menu of ayurvedic treatments derived from a 5,000-year-old healing art established in India. A core principle guiding these treatments is determining your “dosha” type, a ruling characteristic that determines behavior, physical makeup and health tendencies. A simple quiz identifies your type, and then your treatments are customized to keep the dosha aligned.

The decadently therapeutic paprika facial by Eminence, a Hungarian line of food-themed skin-care products, shows positive results for at least 12 days. You can feel the heat emulating from the therapist’s hands during the cranial sacral treatment. This uses the body’s spinal fluid flow to determine which part to massage next. 1297 Bishop’s Lodge Road, Santa Fe, N.M., (800) 543-8475,

The Spa at Bernardus Lodge: Ultimate indulgence
Amazingly picturesque and elegant, The Spa at Bernardus Lodge is at home on the grounds of a Carmel Valley winery. Sit in front of the fireplace and enjoy a glass of wine from the area, or enjoy the heated outdoor relaxation pool.

Since the benefit of grapes extends beyond the pleasure of wine, try the grape-seed antioxidant facial made from the finely crushed fruits. This harvest crush facial uses grape seeds for exfoliation. Masseuse Marie-Christine utilizes a combination of Thai techniques for circulation and Swedish techniques for stretching. Special attention is paid to your stomach and back, where women harbor emotion and stress, respectively. 415 Carmel Valley Road, Carmel Valley, Calif., (831) 658-3560,

Natural Skin Creations: Healing touch
Tucked in an old Southern home in the Montrose area is a low-key, neighborhood-y spa helping spa-goers get it all. At Natural Skin Creations, skin-care treatments are serious business, and facial specialist Kat Clark offers many types of nonsurgical face lifts to renew and polish your skin. From micro-dermabrasion to laser resurfacing, her use of high-tech treatments jump-start collagen production and stimulate sagging muscles. Vitamin infusions and Clark’s line of skin products can cure even the most stubborn case of rosacea.

The private pool in the back is a perfect couple’s getaway. Have a massage, and then enjoy a glass of wine in the Jacuzzi. This ultimate setting for relaxation and harmony is the perfect way to escape the big city hustle and bustle. 3406 Mount Vernon St., Houston, (866) 254-9978

Trellis Spa: Mood altering
It’s always been a treat to visit the Houstonian; and now with the addition of the Trellis spa, there is a newfound reason to relax, rejuvenate and revitalize.

Ever wonder why you are encouraged to drink more water after a massage? The movement and pressure stimulate and release toxins into your body that must be flushed out as soon as they are disturbed. If not, they will redeposit and continue to cause problems.

Here, you must indulge in a hydrotherapy bath. It’s a full-sized, therapeutic tub that lightly massages with water jets while colors, sounds and aromas revive your senses. 111 N. Post Oak Lane, Houston, (713) 685-6790,

Sunset Body Works: Solitary refinement
One of the only locally owned businesses on Main Street to survive the construction is a quaint spa on the second floor of the Rice Hotel: Sunset Body Works. Some of the original brick is still exposed, taking you back to a time when the Rice Hotel was the center of downtown commerce.

Despite this urban feel, the retreat creates an atmosphere of relaxation and tranquility. You’ll truly believe you are the only person there. Balancing and renewing stressed-out skin, a Zen feeling is transcended through the hands of your masseuse. Here, they devote equal amounts of time on all of your body parts and aren’t afraid to give a really deep sports massage if you request it. 909 Texas, Ste. 206, Houston, (713) 223-5900, H

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