The ski spa vacation may have been invented in the Alps, but these Rockies' resorts have still got game.
source: The Madeline Hotel
You'd be hard-pressed to find a major ski resort these days without luxury spa accommodation. Not only do long days on the slopes go hand in hand with therapeutic massages and soaks in the steam room, but the wellness trend is taking over as well. It may still be cool to ski powder all day and party at the bars all night, but if you want to indulge in a truly rejuvenating ski vacation, staying at a spa resort is your best bet.
We've compiled the top ski spa destinations in the West 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: St. Regis Aspen
Aspen has transformed over the years from 1800's mining town to ghost town to ultimate getaway for the rich and famous to its present day scene: and elegant mountain resort town with world-class offerings and down-to-earth community feel. Aspen not only gets points for health and wellness offerings (local chefs are sticklers about using the best local and organic ingredients), but environmental standards as well. Many hotels and spas are now going green, whether through LEED-certified building or implementing natural local products into treatments and therapies. There's plenty of skiing to go around, with Aspen and Snowmass mountains standing as the main destinations and Buttermilk and Aspen Highlands offering additional slope space. You could spend days wandering around picturesque downtown, or hiding away in top-notch hotel spas.
St. Regis Aspen
The St. Regis is located in historic downtown Aspen, blending contemporary luxury with old West character. Rooms offer mountain, town, or courtyard views. Suites are spacious and decked out in fine leather and wood furnishings. The hotel itself is located just next to the slopes, and a short walking distance from downtown restaurants and clubs. The Remède Spa is incomparable in size and elegance, and boasts an oxygen lounge, steam caves, cold plunges, and Confluence waterfall.
When You Go:
Stay…in one of the five Junior Suites, which offer separate bedroom and living area – ask for mountain views.
Dine...at Trecento Quindici Decano for fine Italian fare sourced from local ingredients and crafted from scratch.
Detox…with The Rocky Mountain Ritual, a whole-body treatment that includes exfoliation, aromatherapy bath, and foot and scalp treatments.
Get Fit…in the fully outfitted gym, or with private yoga classes.
Don't Miss…a dip in the Confluence waterfall, which features swimming area and private nooks behind various cascading waterfalls.
Hotel Jerome is a true gem: and Aspen mainstay that has seen the town transition through its many phases since the 1890's. Finely decorated interiors feature antiques and artifacts with all the modern amenities of a luxury resort. The Auberge Spa is intimate and therapeutic, offering a variety of treatments that draw on local natural products and healing modalities. Kid-friendly but romantic, it's a favourite amongst families and couples alike.
When You Go:
Stay…in a Premiere King room, a simple but spacious option with Aspen mountain views.
Dine...at J-Bar, Aspen's hot spot for crafty cocktails, socialising, and delectable light bites.
Detox…with a Phytomier Contouring Body Wrap, which eliminates toxins and invigorates skin tissues through tapotement style massage and sea sponge exfoliation.
Get Fit…at the spa's fitness centre, or talk to a concierge about specialty snowshoe tours and local Aspen outings.
Don't Miss…the Best of Jerome Massage, which combines warm stone massage, hydrolauric fascial and hair/scalp conditioning for total body replenishment.
source: Rock Resorts
Vail has reigned king of the I-70 corridor for decades now, and since its humble beginnings the resort has only grown (and grown, and grown). While the extensive resort offerings, luxury hotels, sprawling village and fantastic restaurants tend to attract big crowds, we love it as a ski spa destination because vacationers can hide away in award-winning spas one day and hit the town's hottest nightclubs the next. Even the most elegant hotels are kid- (and often pet-) friendly, making it easy for families to indulge in top-notch accommodations. It's easy to spend a pretty penny on a Vail vacation, but the reward is worth it.
Arrabelle at Vail Square
Upscale and European-themed, the Arrabelle is centrally located in Vail Village, with unparalleled views of the mountain and access to all the happenings downtown. Expect the finest service, including pet pampering, immediate access to the Eagle Bahn Gondola, private après ski deck, luxury rooms and the 10,000 square foot Rocks Resorts Spa. Did we mention rooftop hot tubs and lap pool?
When You Go:
Stay…in one of 81 luxury rooms, each boasting fireplace, spa tub, and old-world décor.
Dine...at Tavern on the Square, which offers and eclectic menu of modern comfort food and finely crafted cocktails.
Detox…with an Antioxidant Glow Facial, which includes the application of peptide and age-repair serums to leave skin toned and nourished.
Get Fit…in the state-of-the-art fitness centre – stocked with aerobic equipment, free weights, and strength training equipment.
Don't Miss…the Sacred Stone Massage, which uses the application of hot river stones on energising points of the spine – this books up fast, so call in advance!
Vail Cascade Resort and Spa
Vail Cascade Resort and Spa is a complete resort within itself, offering condominium accommodations, athletic club, spa, childcare services, and on-site chairlift to Vail mountain. It's our top pick for families interested in a fully catered getaway. Condos are spacious and sun-washed, while private home vacation rentals are ideal for bigger groups.
When You Go:
Stay…in the Liftside condos – they sleep up to 5 and are located steps away from Chairlift #20.
Dine...In the resort's newly renovated restaurant, which features wild game and Colorado inspired dishes.
Detox…in one of the aromatherapy steam rooms, infused with therapeutic essential oils.
Get fit…in the training room, which has access to a small but diverse selection of weight training machines.
Don't Miss…the High Altitude Massage upon arrival: it will increase oxygen and blood flow throughout the body, making the transition to mountain air all the more seamless.
source: Whistler Resort
Whistler Blackcomb is a massive resort, with over 3,237 ha skiable terrain, two base villages featuring over 200 shops, world-class dining and night clubs and, of course, fantastic spas. Some noteworthy spa getaways are on the outskirts of the town – but for the sake of access to skiing, we've listed those that are ski-in/ski-out and Village front and centre. Whistler is a mecca for big mountain skiing, resort getaways, and indulging in adventure and a vibrant social scene: we love it for a spa getaway because unwinding on your off days will actually enhance your overall ski vacation experience (this is the very core concept of the ski spa getaway).
Expect the top-notch service you'll find at any Four Seasons in the world coupled with a rustic mountain elegance unique to that of Whistler. This Four Seasons boasts private residences, prime access to Whistler Village and the slopes, and a concierge that will do everything in his or her power to help you craft the best ski spa getaway ever. Travel and Leisure named this spa the #1 Hotel Spa in Canada, and it doesn't fail to disappoint – even the kids get their own spa menu.
When You Go:
Stay…in one of 166 guest rooms that sport private balconies and mountain views.
Dine...at Sidecut for classic British Columbia fare like wild salmon and BC fallow venison loin – there's also a 200 bottle wine list.
Detox…with the comprehensive Sea-to-Sky Massage, which uses warm river rocks and hot towels to stimulate blood flow and release toxins.
Get Fit…in spin class or Pilates; the fitness room is open for individual workouts.
Don't Miss…the Maple Sugar Scrub, which uses organic maple syrup and raw sugar to exfoliate skin – yum!
The Westin Resort & Spa
The Westin got a facelift just before the 2010 Winter Olympics, and it's now one of the most desired accommodation options in Whistler. Studio, one-, and two-bedroom suites boast fireplaces, kitchens, and modern décor. Central Whistler Village location is ideal for those who want to bounce around town for shopping and restaurants. The slopes are just out the front door.
When You Go:
Stay…in a one-bedroom suite – the extra living space is worth the upgrade.
Dine...at Grille & Vine for contemporary Italian and American fare in an elegant bistro setting.
Detox…with the Detoxifying Moor Mud Soak, a hydrotherapy treatment that absorbs toxins and rejuvenates the skin with vitamins and minerals.
Get fit…in the spa's health club, which boasts modern equipment and indoor/outdoor pool.
Don't Miss…the Satago Massage, which features two therapists working simultaneously to relieve sore muscles.
Deer Valley is a favourite for skiers (note: skiers only) who like the red carpet treatment and don't mind paying top dollar for it. This resort, nestled in the Wasatch just 40 minutes drive from Salt Lake City, is renowned for its customer service, and therefore attracts ski vacationers who expect nothing less than the best. As you can imagine, the hotels and spas follow suit, making Deer Valley a destination dripping in attention to fine detail. Don't get us wrong – it's not all about the glitz and glamor: the skiing itself is fantastic, and the prime location less than 6 km from bustling Park City offer visitors the best of both worlds: quiet hideaways in luxury hotels with direct access to world-class skiing and nearby shopping and nightlife.
Stein Eriksen Lodge
The Stein Erikson Lodge has won numerous awards over the years: it sets the bar for the epitome of luxury ski and stay accommodation in the West. The hotel sits mid-mountain at Deer Valley with direct access to the slopes and complementary service to downtown Park City. The 23,000-square foot spa is the only five-star spa in Utah.
When You Go:
Stay…in one of the spacious luxury bedrooms, which feature open layouts and gas fireplaces.
Dine...at the Glitretind Restaurant, which features seasonal menus sourced sustainably from local farms.
Detox…with the Nordic Detox Body Wrap – a cacooning body mask that extracts toxins and delivers nutrients.
Get Fit…with group wellness classes like Morning Mountain Yoga and Barre.
Don't Miss…an Ashiatsu Massage, where specially-trained therapists suspended from the ceiling massage with their feet to relieve compression and chronic back pain.
Montage Deer Valley
The Montage Deer Valley is massive, boasting 220 guest rooms and suites, five restaurants, 35,000 square foot spa and even its own bowling alley. Largely family-oriented, you'll find plenty of kid-centered activities for the little ones, outdoor fire pits for daily s'more roasting, and some of the best ski-in/ski-out access in Deer Valley. The alpine-inspired spa features a gorgeous swimming pool, skilled therapists, and weekly wellness classes.
When You Go:
Stay…in a Vista View guestroom for cosy digs and mountain views.
Dine...at Apex, the Montage's fine dining gem featuring delectable dishes like Skuna Bay salmon and Niman Ranch pork tenderloin.
Detox…with a Manual Lymphatic Drainage massage, which decreases inflammation by improving lymph and blood circulation throughout the body.
Get fit…with daily dance, spin, and yoga classes; personal trainers are also on staff.
Don't Miss…laps in the indoor mosaic lap pool, which is surrounded by stunning views of surrounding mountains.
source: Madeline Hotel and Spa
Telluride is Colorado's stunning mountain scene without the scene. Its roots date back to the 1800's when it was established as a silver mining town on the banks of the San Miguel River, and downtown buildings still boast an historic charm far from what one might expect in a resort town. That said, the resort itself is world-class, and plays host to vacation homes of big names like Oprah and Tom Cruise. The Mountain Village area at the base of the resort lies above the town, and a free gondola provides service between the two from 7 am to midnight. For a relaxing getaway cosied up in the mountains, stay at these ski spa hotels: you can ride downtown for the mellow nightlife scene and still be in bed before 12.
Madeline Hotel and Spa
Located in Mountain Village, The Madeline boasts luxe rooms with mountain views and some with private balconies. Two on-site restaurants, ski valet, and gorgeous spa add to the splendour of The Madeline, which is Telluride's only four-diamond, full service hotel. For families or friends travelling together, the 1-4 bedroom residences offer spaciousness and privacy. The spa is world-class, and offers a full treatment menu, fitness classes, and oxygen bar.
When You Go:
Stay…in a slopeside guestroom for short stays, or splurge on a suite for added space.
Dine...at one of the many plush nooks at the M Club, which boasts award-winning Western fare.
Detox…with traditional Thai massage, which works the deep tissues of the body to release toxins.
Get Fit…with alignment based yoga class weekly in the fitness boutique.
Don't Miss…the Gemstone Ritual: a massage with gemstone-energized oils that bring body and mind into balance.
The Peaks Resort and Spa
An outdoor heated pool and prime location in Mountain Village are two of many perks of staying at The Peaks Resort and Spa. The blend of modern architecture with refined rustic décor offers a sense of quintessential Colorado. Guest rooms and suites offer mountain views on every side, and boast oversized bathrooms, spacious interiors, and some private balconies. Suites are individually designed to suit different themes. If you choose to go in the summer, note that you'll have "golf-in/golf-out" access as well.
When You Go:
Stay…in the Grand Alpine Vista Suite for extra lounge area and views of Mountain Village.
Dine...at Altezza for Italian-inspired Colorado entrees and fantastic wine selections.
Detox…with a Rolfing treatment, which works deeply into tissues and structures to release toxins and encourage proper alignment.
Get fit…with a personalised wellness plan from on-staff trainers and yogis.
Don't Miss…a natural high in the Oxygen Inhalation Lounge.