Sophisticated getaways call for sophisticated services, which is why this post is dedicated to some of the best wellness and spa retreats out there. Exotic landscapes, nature-inspired architecture, exquisite spas and body-trembling massages — these are all elements that contribute to a memorable holiday experience. The post features wellness retreats from various parts of the world (from Indonesia and Thailand to Italy and the US), all ranking high in terms of visitor satisfaction. Another factor we considered was the relationship between the spa resorts and surrounding landscapes; most of the getaways in the photos below are spectacularly embedded in nature. So take a deep breath and prepare for a stunning display of ten highly sensory escapes.
Designed by Rick Joy, Wendell Burnette & Marwan Al-Sayed, this nature embedded hotel has a total of 34 luxurious rooms, each offering dramatic views over the stratified rock towards the Grand Staircase. According to the hotel staff, the Aman Spa at Amangiri is a 2,322-square metre (25,000 square foot) destination unto itself, providing a wonderful setting for relaxation and rejuvenation. The entrance pays tribute to the nearby slot canyons and opens into an intimate reception and lounge area featuring a glass tiled, sky-lit reflection pool and a central fireplace.
Encompassing the essence of these words — "where the heart wonders, tranquility will follow" — Shangri-La's Villingili Resort and Spa gathers luxury facilities on 30 acres of lush vegetation pierced by nature trails — a perfect setting for the perfect waterfront vacation. The resort located in the southern most atoll of the Maldives stretches across the sparkling waters, offering a luxurious place to relax. CHI, the Spa at Shangri-La is said to blend personal peace, enchantment and well-being.
Located in the foothills of the Himalayas in northern India, on 100 acres of virgin forest, the impressive Ananda Spa invites guests to meditate and unwind. The resort uses the healing principles of the East and the West with a specific focus on Ayurveda and Aromatherapy, all combined with contemporary spa technology. Yoga, healing experiences and beauty treatments are just some of the services provided here.
Southern Ocean Lodge is a luxury resort located along the cliffs of Kangaroo Island, Australia. The Southern Spa is a private oasis of calm, perched high on a cliff top and commanding dramatic views of the Southern Ocean stretching toward the Antarctic. A destination in its own right, the spa fuses the unique landscape and location of Southern Ocean Lodge with the acclaimed Australian-made Li'Tya range of spa products and professional staff.
Located within the ancient hot spring temples built during the Ming and Qing dynasties, this spectacular oasis of misty, awe-inspiring relaxation captures the essence of spa treatments bedecked with a myriad of inspiring design details. Rising above the Jialing River, in the North Hot Springs Park of Chongqing, the resort welcomes guests with a collection of reasons to come back again and again: 31 spa suites and villas with private plunge pools team up with private terraces and hot spring gardens to shape an unforgettable travel experience.
Located in the rolling hills of Tuscany's Maremma region, Terme di Saturnia Spa & Golf Resort invites guests in a luxurious setting. According to the hotel staff, the varied architectural components, furnishings and colors merge into one to form an atmosphere of total multi-sensory pleasure. This quest for harmony has inspired architects from the Parisotto & Formenton Studio to interior design the area which separates the spa reception from the zone specializing in treatments and therapies. Entering the spa area, guests can enjoy a sensory kind of full-body envelopment.
Resonating with its surroundings, the Bulgari Resort in Bali speaks a hybrid design language, combining traditional Balinese shapes and high class Italian style in an unforgettable destination. A sophisticated atmosphere intertwines with exquisite services in a successful attempt of creating a sublime experience. Gathering views across the Indian Ocean, the resort sits 150 meters over the sea, implementing natural inspiration and creating a dreamy setting for guests.
The Mezzororre Resort is located in Forio d´Ischia, in the province of Naples, Italy, in a lovely setting. The 5 star hotel is perched on a bluff above the sea, offering guests tranquility and a magic atmosphere. Equipped with modern and exclusive health and beauty treatments, the Spa contributes to a perfect state of relaxation.
Tucked discreetly amidst the coconut palm trees of the picturesque Koh Phangan, lies a unique tropical haven boasting 44 suites and villas, each with a private plunge pool. The Anantara Rasananda Koh Phangan Villa Resort is equipped with an exquisite Spa, within jungle gardens: "Our treatments incorporate ancient herbal remedies to restore and revive the body's inward and outward beauty. Along with timeless herbal elixirs we introduce modern remedies for relaxation and detoxification, creating innovative and therapeutic treatments to restore inner peace and total wellness."
COMO Shambhala Estate is located near Ubud, Bali, and consists of picturesque villa-style accommodation units with terrace rooms, garden rooms and various types of suites. Even though visitors are sure to be overwhelmed by the comfort and papering of their accommodation unit and the services provided here, few of them will remain inside for a long period of time, during their stay in this tropical paradise. The Spa offers the opportunity for Asian-inspired treatments including massage, facials for restorative skincare.