The mere thought of a spa is one of those things that makes one automatically lean back and exhale. Few among us would say no to an opportunity to indulge and rejuvenate but it is sometimes that gentle nudge of a reminder that does the trick. So here it is: Design Hotels™ presents five member hotels that not only boast fantastic spas but also singular experiences, from their specialty to location. These specialties also include something for most vices. Cocoa? Good for you. Coffee? Stimulating with sucrose. Salt? Load it on walls!
Not only are the spas destinations in themselves but Design Hotels™ has city, country and getaway spots to choose from. In downtown Nairobi, enrich yourself with both cultural African artifacts dotted throughout Tribe Hotel as well as the natural and mineral treasures used at the spa. In the mild climes of southern Europe, Romeo Hotel in ancient Naples has stunning views of the Amalfi Coast and Capri Island, highlighted by the subtle elegant décor and greatly aiding the unwind process. Near the palaces and villas of mountain-wrapped Lake Como, C-Hotel & Spa is a minimalist refuge styled with rare local materials and one of the best spots to enjoy nature’s tranquility. In a picturesque wine region of Austria, LOISIUM Wine & Spa Resort Langenlois is a stunning architectural space that looks like it is floating on pillars and glass. The airy rooms have large windows overlooking the vineyards and surrounding villages. Finally, perched above Lake Zurich, The Dolder Grand is both a historic landmark and a testament to contemporary architecture, thanks to Lord Norman Foster who helmed the structural renovations.
Get a Kick-start
Calling all caffeine addicts! If the sound of a 90-minute Coffee Detox body polish and massage or Smooth Mocha coffee mask gets your heart pumping faster than your usual morning cup, then Tribe Hotel in Kenya is the right choice. Named after the Mijikenda Kaya forests, known to be a repository of spiritual healing, Kaya spa has everything from urban body bootcamps to a combination of Thai and Shiatsu to ancient healing therapies. This April, try the Rasul Mud Therapy at Kaya Spa with a grapefruit body scrub, mineral mud mask and massage. Set in a traditional steam chamber, the lavender-infused room is an ancient recipe for tired and sore muscles.
Rub Some Salt on It
Naples might be known for its food and a certain edginess but it is also home to Dogana del Sale at Romeo Hotel. The first luxury spa in the region, virtues of salt and water are mingled with new technologies to create a holistic atmosphere. The spa area, resplendent in black granite and white gold mosaics, includes a Finnish Sauna, an Infrared Sauna with Himalayan pink salt walls, a thalassotherapy steam bath, Kneipp treatment, Frigidarium, tropical rain showers and hydrotherapeutic pools. The newly added Salt Room is covered entirely in white sodium chloride at a constant temperature and humidity, ideal to soothe, relax and detoxify. Learn to dehydrate the right way.
With a strict limit to the number of guests allowed inside the C-SPA, it promises a total sensory experience to restore balance in absolute privacy. To relieve stress, the spa bath with indoor air massage is key. A space covered in glass mosaic inlaid with gold, refined light and water reactivates blood circulation and oxygenation of the skin, relaxing the body. To reduce fatigue and improve respiration, dip into the external saline swimming pool or stand under the energizing waterfall. Designed by landscape architect Emilio Trabella, the garden at C-Hotel & Spa is a stunning oasis of meditative calm for reflection and recuperation.
Skin Genie in a Bottle
A trip to the LOISIUM Wine & Spa Resort Langenlois is always an upper. Located in one of Austria’s best white wine producing region and designed by American architect Steven Holl, the resort is a treat on many levels. In the spa, the wine takes on headier proportions with the Grape Elixir Facial to pamper your face or the body peeling for smooth skin. There’s even an aromatic grape bath in a wine barrel! For those who like to keep their wine strictly for the taste buds, choose instead from the Aveda treatments that use pure plant and flower essence combinations for traditional Ayurvedic healing.
The Grand Dame of Spas
Recently awarded the Hotel Spa of the Year Europe at the World Spa Awards to add to its long list of accolades such as the British Tatler Spa Award and Best Spa of Switzerland by American SpaFinder, The Dolder Grand Spa is an impressive space to enter. The introduction to this 4,000-square-meter space with both European and Japanese influences starts at the reception where textured limestone walls curve into a magnificent pool. The Dolder Grand Spa has procured the Amala premium skincare range, known for its organic products based on ingredients like cocoa, desert fig and myrtle. A highlight is The Nature’s Organic Seasonal Facial, which includes the Vedic Marma vital-points technique combining essences from wild blue lotus, bamboo and ginger plants.