If you know me, you know I love nothing more than a spa day. For me it’s the perfect way to unplug, relax and truly leave feeling rejuvenated. Every time my husband and I travel I consult with the amazing travel agents at Brownell Travel to book all of my spa appts to ensure everything is perfect for my day of pampering. To help you travel and spa in style, I’ve asked the travel experts at Brownell to share their insider tips on the best spas worldwide. Enjoy!- Megan
Relaxing is so much easier when you are removed from stress triggers. And no, we don’t just mean mentally removing yourself from a situation; we’re talking physically getting away from your endless to-dos and never-ending commitments. Even people who thrive off of constant activity need to take a break to rest and recharge. There’s one word that is synonymous with relaxing: SPA. A spa experience can be completely rejuvenating, whether you go on a full blown spa retreat or carve out a few hours during a family vacation to hit the spa (because let’s be honest – sometimes you need it most on a family trip). Our Advisors share their top spa experiences while traveling below.
About: This boutique Caribbean all-inclusive resort offers a 5000 square foot full-service spa in addition to countless activities and beautiful beaches. After a day on the tennis courts or in the sun, the spa is a must.
Advisor Tip: “The picturesque setting up on the cliff with the waves crashing below was incredible and my massage was fantastic.” – Deborah Barth
Location: Puerto Rico
About: Tucked away on Puerto Rico’s Caribbean coast on 1400 acres, Dorado Beach exudes tranquility and relaxation. The award-winning spa spans five acres and integrates indigenous traditions into the treatments.
Advisor Tip: “The massage up high in a treehouse where you lie on a mattress and dissolve into the flora and fauna is incredible.” – Bowden Sarrett
Location: Hanoi, Vietnam
About: A blend of French elegance and Vietnamese tradition, the Sofitel Legend Metropole is a must for travelers in Vietnam. Le Spa du Metropole caters to the international traveler and is open from 6 AM – 9 PM.
Advisor Tip: “After 23 hours on a plane and around 30 hours total travel time getting to Vietnam, the only thing I wanted was a massage to help me unwind and relax. Despite having only 2 hours of free time and not having an appointment ahead of time, the therapists at the spa happily booked a treatment with just 15 minutes’ notice. The quality of the massage was a 20 on a scale of 1–10. On top of that, a 60 minute massage ended up costing less than $100 USD (tip included) – but for the quality, I would’ve paid 3x that much! It was the perfect introduction to the attentive, highly detailed Vietnamese service.” – Louisa Gehring
Location: Beverly Hills, California
About: While the hotel is adjacent to shopping, dining, and all the hot spots in Beverly Hills, the spa offers a 20,000 square foot oasis from the hustle and bustle.
Advisor Tip: “I loved the chic and glamorous design of the Montage Beverly Hills. I had a completely over the top experience with oversized sauna, steam and “cold” room with crushed ice falling from the ceiling. The spa features tenured professionals skilled in several types of massage.” – Haisley Smith
Location: Kruger National Park, South Africa
About: This luxury South African safari camp offers extensive privacy, incredible game viewing, and white glove service. The idyllic setting tucked in the bush gives guests an up close experience South Africa’s natural beauty.
Advisor Tips: “Enjoy a treatment outdoors overlooking the South African bush! A massage at this 5-star spa is the perfect relaxation in between morning and evening safari game drives. The spa uses Dermalogica products, and the staff is among the best I’ve ever experienced.” – Austin Vollmer
Location: San Marcos, California
About: For over 50 years, The Golden Door has been a leading wellness destination. This property is for someone who truly wants to focus on health and wellbeing – each guest has a personalized fitness, nutrition, and spa program.
Advisor Tip: “This experience is truly one of the most holistic spa immersions that someone can have within the spa industry. The spa experience is “focus on you” for a week. It includes amazing spa treatments, wellness, food (farm to table) and challenges you to be your best in your physical activity program. The F&B program is extremely moderate in terms of calories consumed but the quality and taste of food is truly exceptional. You have a body treatment every day and facials several times during the week with manicures and pedicures intermittently sprinkled in as well. It truly is a transformational experience.” – Virginia Markstein O’Hara
Location: Walland, Tennessee
About: Blackberry Farm is known for its exceptional cuisine (it is a member of the esteemed Relais & Chateaux collection after all!) and beautiful setting in the Great Smoky Mountains. Between meals and activities like mountain biking and fly-fishing, make time to relax in the spa.
Advisor Tip: “A trip to the spa is a must during your stay, and a $100 spa credit is one of the Virtuoso amenities. Go for one treatment or get a day pass for all the treatments you can fit in one day (available at certain times of the year). I had the best pedicure of my life at the spa! The swinging beds in the relaxation room are heavenly and a great place to catch a quick nap after yet another delicious meal. If something as simple as a pedicure is so good, imagine what the massages would be like!” – Amanda Foshee
Location: Providenciales, Turks and Caicos
About: From the moment you’re swept away from the airport in one of Amanyara’s Land Rovers, you can immediately relax. Each freestanding villa offers bountiful privacy, and the service is the best on the island.
Advisor Tip: “Though the entire Amanyara property is calm and relaxing, the spa takes it to the next level. I had an incredible Sacred Stone massage that I wished would never end. Each treatment room is a private villa situated around the most serene pond, which you can continue to enjoy after your treatment if your time allows.” – Dara Arbuthnot
Old Edwards Inn & Spa
Location: Highlands, North Carolina
About: Conveniently located in the charming town of Highlands, the Old Edwards Inn & Spa is a North Carolian gem. Just minutes away from hiking trails and walking distance from boutiques and restaurants, it is a perfect spot for a long weekend or an extended stay.
Advisor Tip: “The entire experience at the Old Edwards Inn spa is incredibly peaceful. I stayed there for a girls’ weekend with my mom and sister, and we made an afternoon of the spa. Before and after our treatments we relaxed in the sunroom in cozy robes and read our books. The service was outstanding and the therapists were well-trained and attentive to our individual needs.” – Brooke Drinkard
Do you know what makes a spa experience even more relaxing? Getting a discount. When you book with a Brownell Travel Advisor, you can get $100 off spa services at many of the top hotels and resorts around the world.