By Michele E. Buttelman
Hey baby, it’s been cold outside!
This winter’s numerous cold snaps in the Santa Clarita Valley accompanied by snow, hail, rain and wind, encourage dreams of soaking in a warm spa hot tub followed up with sea salt body scrubs and Swedish massages.
Winter will still be with us until March 20, when spring arrives, but it’s never too late, or too early, to book a spectacular spa vacation.
The best part of a spa vacation is you don’t have to “do” anything but rest, relax and be pampered.
However, if you do feel the need to “do” something, many spa vacations include a variety of activities, aside from soaking in Japanese hot tubs. Activities range from wild food foraging to daily hikes, yoga classes, wine tastings and bike rides.
Many resorts promote the benefits of wellness, as well as an escape from the stresses of daily life.
SCV residents are fortunate to live in California where spa vacations are plentiful and choices abound for the perfect spa vacation tailored to your needs.
Canyon Ranch Woodside
16350 Skyline Blvd.,
Woodside, CA 94062
Canyon Ranch Woodside is an all-inclusive health and wellness destination nestled beneath centuries-old redwoods.
Among the unique experiences offered at Woodside is the chance to discover the incredible beauty of the Santa Cruz mountains with guided hikes, biking and other excursions at this Northern California retreat. Traverse the trails of the redwood forest, birdwatch in the chaparral grasslands, explore regional fault lines, or visit the ancient Methuselah tree.
You can also experience the practice of Shinrin Yoku, the Japanese practice of taking in the forest atmosphere or forest “bathing.” Not a literal bath, but a chance to slow down and embrace the surrounding ancient Redwoods and Coast Live Oaks.
Alila Ventana Big Sur
Big Sur, CA 93920
When you reach the edge of the continent, where the sky, the sea, the mountains and the redwoods all converge, you find a place of unmatched beauty and tranquility.
You’ve reached Alila Ventana Big Sur, an inclusive (includes breakfast, lunch and dinner daily) adults only enclave tucked among the forests in one of the most iconic and dramatic landscapes on Earth.
Spa Alila at Ventana Big Sur is a refuge for your senses.
Big Sur has long been known as a sacred, curative site and the Spa Alila
sensory experience is designed around encouraging inner peace and
You’ll also find unique experiences like wild food foraging classes, axe throwing and falconry.
Two Bunch Palms
67425 Two Bunch Palms Trail,
Desert Hot Springs, CA 92240
If you really want to get away this destination spa is an immersive experience featuring 600-year-old natural springs for “taking the waters,” vegan and vegetarian dining with mindfully created yoga classes and various workshops with creative adventures.
There is also a full-service spa with numerous massage and skincare options. The rooms are designed to encourage “digital detox” for a complete retreat experience.
A diverse catalog of experiences awaits guests from natural indigo dyeing to hand-thrown ceramics. Two Bunch hosts a variety of workshops and creative classes for all interests, hosted by guest instructors.
A typical day can include a variety of spa treatments and meals followed by an evening of fireside s’mores and spiked hot chocolate culminating with a stargazing night float.
The resort is said to have been purchased in the 1920s by Al Capone and was used as his west coast hideout. Capone built tunnels, fortresses and even a runway. If you stay in the Al Capone suite, you’ll see the only evidence that remains, a bullet hole, lodged in a mirror.
Quiet Mind Mountain Lodge, Retreat, Spa
34540 Engineers Road,
Julian, CA 92036
This serene lakeside wellness retreat is surrounded by natural beauty in every season. The retreat sits upon a golden hill overlooking Lake Cuyamaca and Cuyamaca National Park. Explore 600 000 acres of San Diego’s beautiful countryside with hiking trails, wineries, horseback riding, boating and the charming historical town of Julian.
Elegant and spa themed luxurious hotel accommodations with breathtaking lake and mountain views.
All-inclusive wellness and retreat packages include gourmet meals, massages, yoga and healing wellness treatments.
Other amenities include a chance to stargaze into the clear sky at 4,600 ft. from the outdoor lake view jacuzzi. Nourish your mind, body and spirit with a contemplative walk in the labyrinth, read an inspiring book in the spiritual library, enjoy painting, yoga, meditation and a well-equipped gym.
Glen Ivy Hot Springs Day Spa
25000 Glen Ivy Road,
Corona, CA 92883
It might seem a long way to go for a day spa experience, but those who’ve traveled to Glen Ivy report that this world-class resort is worth the trip. In addition, there are 17 hotels within five miles of Glen Ivy if you want to stay overnight, or if you plan to enjoy Glen Ivy for a few days.
You won’t run out of things to do at this garden-like hot springs resort located about two hours from the SCV.
The popular retreat brims with offerings including daily classes, private cabanas and 19 pools which include thermal mineral baths, a hot and cold plunge, Saline Pool and lap pool.
There are two restaurants as well as a juice bar and a new cosmopolitan bar, The Lounge 1860.
Admission also includes access to Glen Ivy’s lush gardens, ample lounge areas in addition to Club Mud, saunas, steam rooms, Roman Baths, showers and fitness and wellness classes. Individual spa treatments and The Grotto incur additional costs. Special admission packages are available on the Glen Ivy website.