With its charming towns, historic farmhouses, farm-to-table cuisine and destination ski resorts, New England makes for the ideal – albeit surprising – ski spa vacation destination.
Source: Stoweflake Resort & Spa
The Alps have class and the Rockies have luxury, but if you're seeking understated elegance and character, New England's spa hotels, lodges, and inns don't disappoint. There is something quite unique about these places and spaces: a rich history of blending recreation and relaxation in the spirit of enjoying life slowly, holistically, an in harmony with the natural environment. Not sure what we're talking about? Good. That means it's time to book your ski spa vacation to the East.
We've compiled the top ski spa destinations in the East for you based on (of course) the skiing, lodging, activities, and calibre of spas. For each destination, you'll find our top two recommendations for spa hotels, and the insider tips on best rooms, eats, and treatments. Interested in booking at one of these resorts this season? We can help you find the best deals here.
Source: Stoweflake Resort & Spa
Stowe is the picture-perfect, quintessential scene of a New England getaway. With its charming downtown dotted with local shops and cafes as well as an understated yet highly developed ski resort, this destination boasts a mix of character with modern luxury. When it comes to indulgent spa hotels, Stowe's specialty is remodelled farmhouses and upgraded B&B's that offer guests quiet country comfort in modern luxury. The Stowe Mountain Lodge is another option for those interested in ski-in/ski-out access at the base of the resort – here you'll find digs comparable to those of spa hotels in the Rocky Mountain West.
Stoweflake Mountain Resort & Spa
Originally opened in 1963 as a modest motel, the Stoweflake has grown into a top New England destination for ski spa vacationers. Now boasting 120 luxury guest rooms, private townhouses, and award-winning 50,000 square foot spa, the Stoweflake offers modern elegance while maintaining its country roots in all the fine details. Explore the 60 acre property on snowshoes or Nordic skis, or make the short drive to Stowe Mountain Resort.
When you go:
Stay…in one of the Premier Guestrooms with gas fireplace, extra square footage, and convenient location just above the spa.
Dine...at Charlie B's, which brings casual Vermont flair to its comfort foods menu, featuring favourites like prosciutto and sage wrapped chicken breast with polenta cakes.
Detox…with Abhyanga-Garshana, an Ayurvedic treatment combining lymphatic stimulating massage with warm herbal oil application.
Get Fit…in the fully outfitted gym, or with private yoga classes.
Don't Miss…a full body tuning sessions, where sound tuning forks are used to bring the body into alignment, dissolving anxiety and stress.
Stowe Mountain Lodge
With 300 rooms and suites, 2 fabulous restaurants, and a luxury 21,000 square foot spa, Stowe Mountain Lodge represents the epitome of everything one might want in a modern ski spa vacation. The only hotel of its kind at the base of the resort, this is the place to book for easy ski-in/ski-out access, built-in family activities, and a laid-back Vermont vibe you won't want to leave. They even have a Kids Spa Menu for little ones that need some pampering!
When you go:
Stay…in a Junior Suite with mountain views through the oversized window and spacious separate bedroom.
Dine...at Solstice for contemporary American eats like burgundy braized short ribs in crunchy potato fondant.
Detox…with a Detoxifying & Energising Scrub, which uses a series of essential oils to stimulate the lymphatic system, reduce cellulite, and relieve stress.
Get Fit…with Bootcamp, Barre, and Cycling classes at the Wellness Centre – then relax in the heated outdoor pool.
Don't Miss…the Stowe Cider Uber Scrub, which combines 50 minutes of exfoliating scrub (with award winning Stowe Cider) and 50 minutes relaxing massage.
Source: Castle Hill Resort & Spa
Okemo means "all come home," and this family-friendly resort in mid-Vermont offers all the comforts and friendly faces that one could want on a cosy, understated ski spa vacation. A favourite amongst travellers from the tristate area, Okemo is located just enough off the beaten path to offer a weekend escape in under 4 hours from New York City. While its spa offerings are not as extensive as Stowe, you can't beat the convenient location and inspiring views. Hard-core skiers, they also have some of the best grooming in the East.
Castle Hill Resort & Spa
With just 10 individually decorated rooms, the Castle Hill Resort & Spa offers a most intimate space for the quiet Vermont getaway. We recommend The Castle for romantic weekends, the spa vacation with a side of skiing, as well as small groups of friends (there are condominiums available to rent as well). The only full-service spa in the Okemo region is located here: while small, offers included yoga and Pilates classes, personal training, and spa services.
When you go:
Stay…in one of the historic mansion's mountain-facing rooms for views of the sunrise over Okemo.
Dine...in the antique decorated dining room, which boasts a seasonal pre-fixe menu sourced from local farms.
Detox…with rosemary and mint body wrap with scalp and foot massage for skin exfoliation and rejuvenation.
Get Fit…in the evening light with Pilates classes in the Solarium.
Don't Miss…a Chakra Balancing massage, which blends deep tissue massage, reflexology, and energy work to balance all bodily systems.
Jackson Gore Inn
Okemo's massive expansion in 2003 brought a new level of modernity to the family-run ski area, most notably a developed base area that includes the Jackson Gore Inn. The Inn itself is a combination of timeshare condos and hotel rooms, all with mountain or valley views. This is a great option for families as a kids' ski school, skating rink, and holiday festivities are just out the front door. The Spring House offers pool, fitness, and spa services.
When You Go:
Stay…in a slopeside suite for views of the mountain and the kids cruising down to the base area after lessons.
Dine...at the Coleman Brook Tavern for farm-to-table eats in an elegant atmosphere; the award-winning wine list is extensive.
Detox…with a Vermont Maple and Brown Sugar scrub for rejuvenated skin and a uniquely Vermont scent.
Get fit…in the 18,000 square foot fitness and aquatic centre, complete with a children's pool for kids while you get in some laps.
Don't Miss…the hot stone therapy massage to release tension points on a cold day; therapists use specific pressure points to release tensions deep in the body's core.
Source: Whiteface Lodge
Tucked in the heart of the Adirondacks, you'll find the charming and challenging slopes of Whiteface Mountain – made famous for hosting several events of the 1980 Winter Olympics. Skiers and riders can still test their skills (and their guts) on the slopes that held the Olympic Downhill courses – a tempting call for adrenaline seekers. Not to worry if that doesn't appeal, though: this mountain offers much to intermediates and beginners. The real draw, of course, is nearby Lake Placid: with cutesy shops, outdoor activities, and historic sites, there's much to be enjoyed on a ski spa getaway. Expect luxury mountain lounging in the lakeside lodges and spa services rooted in holistic healing.
The multiple award winning Whiteface Lodge is noted as one of the top luxury lodges in the country. Built in 2005, the Lodge offers an ideal blend of back-to-nature charm and modern luxury. Besides the spa and a fine dining restaurant, amenities include a 56-seat movie theatre, family game room and nightly campfires, and access to nature trails, ice skating rink, and waterfront activities as the summer approaches. This is a top pick for an all-inclusive spa getaway (with some skiing on the side!)
When you go:
Stay…in a one-, two-, or three-bedroom suite with private balcony and rustically elegant furnishings.
Dine...at KANU for fresh, often organic American cuisine sourced from local farms.
Detox…with an Adirondack exfoliation body scrub, which uses locally-sourced products to rejuvenate the skin.
Get Fit…with circuit training, aqua aerobics, and yoga/Pilates classes in the state-of-the-art wellness center.
Don't Miss…the Lodge's famous four-handed massage, in which two therapists work simultaneously to offer the body the ultimate treatment of relaxation.
Mirror Lake Inn
Rich in Lake Placid history, the Mirror Lake Inn offers guests the classic Adirondack experience. Individually themed floors bring aspects of Lake Placid living to interiors, all the while boasting stunning views of Mirror Lake. The Inn is owned by Ed and Lisa Weibrecht, parents of two-time Olympian Andrew Weibrecht, whose medals are there on display. The spa offers a myriad of services, including body treatments, facials, advanced skin care, and day packages.
When you go:
Stay…in a second-floor Cedar Run room, with floor-to-ceiling windows and lake views.
Dine...in front of the fireplace at The View, Lake Placid's most award-winning fine dining restaurant.
Detox…with the Pure Placid Cleansing Ritual, complete with the therapeutic application of essential oils, corn meal exfoliation, and cleansing ritual with distilled water from Lake Placid.
Get fit…in the spa's health club, which boasts modern equipment and indoor/outdoor pool.
Don't Miss…the Thai Herbal Ball Massage: Swedish massage and Thai stretching combine with the healing application of steamed bundles of herbs to specific pressure points on the body.
Source: Omni Resorts
New Hampshire's Mount Washington Resort at Bretton Woods remains more of a hidden gem amongst New England ski resorts. Slightly off the beaten path of tristate weekenders, this ski area gets less crowds and less hype, while all the amenities of a fine modern resort remain. SKI Magazine readers voted it as having the best snow quality in the East, and visitors can enjoy hundreds of acres of White Mountain National Forest beyond the slopes themselves. The main hotel and spa re the Mount Washington Hotel; for something a bit more remote, head to nearby towns a short drive from the resort.
Mount Washington Hotel
A National Historic Landmark, the Mount Washington Hotel was constructed in 1902 as a luxury destination for those seeking rest and repose in the healing surroundings of New Hampshire's White Mountains. It's been frequented by poets and politicians, romantics and families, and skiers with an affinity for luxury getaways. The 25,000 square foot spa boasts a pool, fitness centre, and one of the most extensive spa menus in the East.
When you go:
Stay…in one of the updated guestrooms with marble baths and gas fireplaces.
Dine...at The Cave, a speakeasy from prohibition era with stone walls, strong spirits, and upscale pub grub menu after 9:00 pm.
Detox…with a Coffee Bean Body Polish, an exfoliating and detoxifying treatment including a warm wrap, scalp massage, and application of hand-harvested shea butter.
Get Fit…with access to the state-of-the-art fitness centre and drop-in yoga on Saturday mornings.
Don't Miss…the Sticks and Stones Massage, which blends Mu-Xing therapy with hot stone massage to release cold and tensions.
Common Man Inn & Spa
Just under an hour from Bretton Woods is the Common Man Inn & Spa, a 38-room oasis in the town of Plymouth that brings vacationers from all over the East. Antler chandeliers and handcrafted birch furnishings decorate the rooms, while cosy throws on plush couches invite visitors to curl up with a book and a tea after treatments in the full-service spa. For those seeking country refuge nestled in New Hampshire nature, this is the place to be. It's also walking distance from Main Street, and 50 minutes to the slopes of Bretton Woods.
When you go:
Stay…in a Signature Suite to splurge on extra space and the feel of a private cabin in a hotel.
Dine...at Foster's Boiler Room, which serves upscale comfort foods and local craft beer.
Detox…with a Remineralizing Bath in a private tub, followed by application of body milk.
Get fit…with Tai Chi classes in the sun-washed wellness studio.
Don't Miss…the White Birch Wrap Massage, specially designed by local herbalist to infuse local herbs into the skin while relaxing with a therapeutic massage.
Source: The Equinox
Stratton started spinning its lifts in December 1961 and continues to reign as Southern Vermont's most popular destination. With 97 trails spread across 271 ha and top-notch snowmaking system, conditions are dependable even in temperamental New England weather patterns. The base village resembles that of posh Rocky Mountain resorts, albeit on a smaller scale. You'll find chic shops, bars with character, and a luxurious day spa.
Located in nearby Manchester, The Equinox is a luxury year-round retreat 27 km from Stratton Mountain. Winters bring a cosy and serene presence to the grounds, and the location offers ideal access to historic Manchester shops and restaurants. The spa is renowned for its therapeutic body treatments and 75 foot heated indoor pool. There are also five delicious and distinct dining options at the resort.
When you go:
Stay…in one of the main hotel's distinctly contemporary guest rooms.
Dine...at the Marsh Tavern for delectable eats sourced from nearby Vermont farms and the hotel's own vegetable garden.
Detox…blocked energy in the body with a Reiki treatment, which uses a gentle touch to promote energy flow and balance in all bodily systems.
Get Fit…with alignment based yoga class weekly in the fitness boutique.
Don't Miss…The Spirit of Vermont body treatment, which uses massage, reflexology, and Reiki to deeply calm the body and mind into a state resonant with the relaxed state of the Green Mountains.
Kimpton Taconic Hotel
With its charming structures and earthy interiors, the Kimpton Taconic Hotel offers guests the quintessential Vermont experience. Classy and boutique, the hotel is ideal for those seeking a quiet escape. Concierge services will help you plan your stay with local activities on and off the slopes, and an on-site kids programme with activities like snowman-building contests and movie nights offers quality play time after skiing. You'll find yoga mats in every room and in-room spa services to unwind.
When you go:
Stay…in the Worthy Cottage, a 1800s restored dwelling, for space and extra privacy.
Dine...at The Copper Grouse, a local favourite for soulful seasonal eats and fine local spirits.
Detox…with a Spirulina Body Wrap to nourish and stimulate the skin with vitamins, minerals, and enzymes.
Get fit…with a personalised wellness plan from on-staff trainers and yogis.
Don't Miss…the Aroma Journey Massage, in which you choose your preferred combination of massage techniques and essential oils for a personalised journey to de-stress.