Seeking Relaxation, Therapy, and downright Pampering ?

A Guide to Santa Fe Spas

Date April 12, 2010 at 10:00 PM

Author Editor


Categories Health & Beauty



For the ultimate sensory treat, of course, there's nothing like a luxury spa where just walking in the door makes you feel more relaxed. So lean back, breathe a sigh of relief, and savor this delicious sampling of the best spas in Santa Fe.

Absolute Nirvana. 106 Faithway St., 888-877-7622 or 505-983-7942. The name pretty much says it all. Named "one of the hottest new spas in the world" by Condé Nast Traveler and awarded "the best over-the-top spa treatment in Santa Fe" by Santa Fean magazine, Absolute Nirvana promises a "feast for the senses." Its exotic Indonesian charm sets the tone for treatments that offer the ultimate in decadent Asian-themed luxury. Try a Balinese massage followed by a soak in a rose-petal bath, an Indo-Asian Hot Stone massage, traditional Thai massage, or a "foot fetish" massage. The coup de grâce: deluxe treatments like the Javanese Lulur, an all-over body treatment that was traditionally used by Javanese princesses as a purifying ritual before marriage.

RockResortsTM Spa at La Posada. 330 East Palace Ave., 505-954-9630. Currently undergoing a major renovation to be completed June 2008, the RockResorts Spa 4,500-square-foot spa features, among other indulgences, a heated outdoor pool and hot tub that are open all year. Pamper yourself with Native American-inspired massages like Rolling Thunder, Mother Earth, and Flowing Water. Or, choose a specialty treatment package like the Spirit of Santa Fe, featuring a blue cornmeal and tobacco scrub, ceremonial sage tea, cedar wood oil massage, and sweetgrass tea herbal wrap. Day packages, outdoor cabana treatments, and in-room massages also available.

BODY of Santa Fe. 333 Cordova Rd., 505-986-0362. With its soothing fountains and hushed beauty, BODY's spa will transport you to a semi-tropical paradise. Avail yourself of the wide spectrum of treatments, including deep tissue massage, reflexology, Shiatsu, therapeutic scalp massage, and hot stone massage. Choose a "BODY Beyond" therapist for some of the most popular and experienced specialists in town. While you're there, drop into BODY's bamboo-floored studio for a yoga or Nia class, eat an organic meal at the café, and shop at the beautiful boutique.

Downtown Day Spa. 227 East Palace Ave., 505-986-0113. Visit this Navajo-themed spa, located in the heart of Santa Fe's historic Plaza area, for an authentic Southwest experience. It's the only spa in town that offers signature Southwest regional treatments, using products made exclusively by Navajo medicine woman Virginia Boone. Every Navajo-designed massage uses oils that she has blessed, hand gathered, and concocted from a "pure infusion of traditional Navajo herbs." If you're in the mood to go all-out, sample a specialty package like the Mother Earth, featuring a Red Mesa mud scrub, Navajo white sage hot stone massage with Ayahieii Tsoh and sage- infused hot oil scalp treatment, and cranial sacral work.

SháNah Spa at The Bishop's Lodge. 1297 Bishop's Lodge Rd., 800-732-2240 or 505-819-4000. One of the best-not only in Santa Fe but nationwide-SháNah was recently honored with Condé Nast Johansens' "Most Outstanding Spa" Award. Tucked into the foothills of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains as part of the Bishop's Lodge Resort, SháNah offers a meditative, Pueblo-inspired experience featuring a teepee, outdoor Watsu pool, and two private outdoor massage gardens. SháNah means "vitality and energy" in Navajo, and the spa guarantees you'll get just that. Massage treatments include, among many others: Aquassage (aquatic bodywork based on stretching techniques and Shiatsu), Teepee Massage, Desert Fusion Massage with essential oils, and Rainbow Body-Chakra Balancing Massage.

Ten Thousand Waves. 3451 Hyde Park Rd., 505-982-9304, This Japanese-style spa and resort, located partway up the ski mountain, is both a local staple and a hotspot for tourists and celebrities. You'll feel your breathing slow the moment you ascend the stone steps leading up to the meticulously laid-out indoor/outdoor spa. Specialties: Thai massage, Shiatsu-do, Flowing River stone massage, and Four Hands, One Heart (featuring two massage therapists working on you at once). Bonus: with your massage, you get a free soak in one of the spectacular outdoor communal tubs.