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25 of the Best Spas in the World 2019

by Our Editors
25 Best Spas in the world

Whether it's a couple's massage, mud bath, or seaweed facial, the international spas covered here are sure to provide you with what you need to relax and revitalize.

PASSPORT Editors

We’ve all heard the term “positive thinking,” but when it comes to spas it’s all about blissful thinking, combined, of course, with sensual treatments that are designed to rejuvenate body, mind, and spirit. Whether you book a day at the spa or plan to spend your entire holiday being pummeled and pampered, Passport has left no hot stone unturned or therapy untried, to bring you our favorite spas from around the globe. When planning your next delightfully indulgent getaway, you’re sure to find the treatment of your dreams at one of these exceptional locations. Whether it’s a couple’s massage, mud bath, or seaweed facial, the astounding array of international spas covered here is sure to provide you with just what you need to relax and revitalize.

CLAREMONT CLUB AND SPA
BERKELEY, CALIFORNIA
If you see a lot of people wandering the grounds of this tony resort overlooking San Francisco Bay, that’s because they’re all headed to the topnotch spa, which is so important to this Fairmont resort that straddles the Oakland/Berkeley line that they’ve included the spa in its official name. Here in an atmosphere of refined mellowness, there’s an amazing variety of treatments incorporating everything from beeswax to algae, sea salt to caviar. Experience their Signature Massage (80 minutes/$259), which incorporates aromatic oils and bamboo wands or try such intriguing variations as a Tibetan Sound Vibration Massage (75 minutes/$249), using a collection of “singing bowls” to wash over the body with soothing sound. In the subtly-hued luxury spa suite, join your partner for a Ritual for Two (100 minutes/$539), an extravaganza of indulgence from a dual mineral bath to scalp massage to shoulder and neck treatment topped off with an aromatic massage oil with tiny salt spheres. If your skin feels in need of some help, try an exfoliation with Himalayan sea salt followed by a body wrap of argan oil infused with rosehips in the Radiance Salt Glow (50 minutes/$155). As you head back to your room (join those in the know and do it in your bathrobe) you’ll be glad you paid a visit to this one-of-a-kind spa. www.fairmont.com/claremont-berkeley/spa

—Rich Rubin

PENINSULA SPA
BEVERLY HILLS, CALIFORNIA
One of Beverly Hills’ most exclusive spas is now sporting a facelift of its own. The Peninsula Spa, the award-winning rooftop oasis of luxurious serenity that’s long been the preferred place of pampering for Hollywood’s most famous and powerful, unveiled its new look in May, perfectly complementing the glamorous multi-million dollar renovation of the Peninsula’s rooms and suites that wrapped up last year. Perched next to the hotel’s legendary rooftop pool, the 4,600-square-foot spa now boasts a bonanza of sumptuous upgrades, on full display as you arrive and check in beneath the striking new Swarovski crystal pendant fixture. Before your treatment, relax in the new Himalayan pink salt dry saunas, where heat-activated salt will help to release your body’s serotonin and positively promote your digestion, memory, and mood. Each of the spa’s seven renovated treatment rooms now features softly back-lit capiz shell wall panels, and you can choose to listen to yourown music playlist through your room’s audio system. The spa’s treatment menu offers fantastic new options from Australian Ayurvedabased aromatherapy brand Subtle Energies, including the 24K Gold Age-Defying Facial (60 min/$265, 90 min/$395), which uses mogra (jasmine flower) to boost collagen production and increase cell renewal, combined with 24K gold leaf for its restorative and anti-aging powers. For a customized all-over treatment, opt for Subtle Energies’ Recovering Traveler (100 min/$415), which incorporates an organic body polish for invigoration and renewal, a full body detox massage for relaxation, and a gentleman’s essential hydration facial to cleanse and balance your skin. And should you be headed to a high profile event in this land where such things are commonplace, the Peninsula Spa’s hair and makeup studio is always fully primed to get you red-carpet ready. www.peninsula.com/en/beverly-hills/wellness

—Dan Allen

THE SPA AT JW MARRIOTT BOGOTA
BOGOTA, COLOMBIA
One of Bogota’s best luxury hotels, the JW Marriott is enticingly close to the rainbow-hued Chapinero district. The hotel’s simply named Spa is the perfect place to revive after a long night on the town, and it offers a comprehensive menu of tempting treatments and services. You can choose from options that range from skin treatments with locally sourced ingredients to packages like a romantic couple’s program, (120 min/about $185), which includes a 60-minute massage as well as use of the entire spa facility and a glass of wine. If you’re feeling especially glamorous, opt for the diamond glitter treatment (150 min/about $116), which makes use of mineral extracts from diamond, amethyst, and sapphire to restore the skin’s firmness. The program also includes a body exfoliation, moisturizing massage and rejuvenating facial, all with the goal of harmonizing your chakras and making you feel better, both physically and emotionally. Equally upscale is the caviar balm facial, which aims to stimulate cell metabolism to counteract premature aging. Meanwhile, the candle massage (60 min/about $66), is another interesting option for those looking to be renewed. Using centuries-old techniques invented by Hawaiian healers, the treatment consists of hot candle melts combined with warm soy oil. www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/bogjw-jw-marriott-hotel-bogota

—Mark Chesnut

Deep Ocean Spa Bora Bora

DEEP OCEAN SPA
INTERCONTINENTAL BORA BORA RESORT & THALASSO SPA
BORA BORA, FRENCH POLYNESIA
Nestled on a sliver of sand between the surging Pacific and a sapphire blue lagoon, the Deep Ocean Spa Bora Bora more than lives up to its billing as the first seawater therapy center in the South Pacific. Beyond the idyllic marine setting, every treatment is infused with the healing properties of the local waters.The Polynesian Taurumi Massage (50 min/$165) employs Monoï oil (made from coconuts and the aromatic Tahitian Tiaré flower) and wave-like, extended strokes to push away your cares. Floating in an overwater spa suite, the facility provides a face cradle that allows you to view the teaming sea life swirling beneath you while being massaged, lulling your body and mind into a state of complete relaxation. The Algospa Body Scrub & Wrap (60 min/$160) takes the idea of submersion even one step further. After an enlivening scrub, your body receives a hydrating (or purifying) gel application and then is lowered into a soothing cocoon, surrounded by undulating seawater; it’s as if you’ve been placed inside a water bed. Best of all, with any treatment you get all-day access to the first-class, outdoor hydrotherapy zone. Get a facial in the morning and then return to the spa after a day of activities to experience the island flower scented steam room, the invigorating Deep Chiller Walk leg massager, and the serene tea house with a view of the Pacific. If you are staying at the InterContinental’s five-star resort, consider a three-day spa package ($720), which includes a different 90-minute treatment each day and unlimited use of the spa’s grounds. Tucked into a private, two-person sea water jacuzzi with a sunset view of Bora Bora’s majestic Mount Otemanu, you will believe there’s no one but you, your partner, and the boundless ocean beyond. www.thalasso.intercontinental.com/deep-ocean-spa

—Thomas Mizer

Spa At The 12 Apostles Hotel- Best Spas in the world

Spa At The 12 Apostles Hotel

SPA AT 12 APOSTLES HOTEL
CAMPS BAY, SOUTH AFRICA
Upon arrival in Cape Town, quality spa time is the way to unwind after a long flight or a safari adventure. Pampering in full luxury awaits at the Spa at the 12 Apostles Hotel in Camps Bay, a pocket beach district just a short drive from downtown. The highly personalized hotel experience is consistent with the reliably luxurious, LGBTQ-friendly Red Carnation Hotel Collection, which includes the spa’s expert team. Therapists put an emphasis on holistic wellbeing. Both express treatments and packages are satisfying, along with body, hair, and facial services customized for men’s needs. Among favorite facials are the Line Eraser (60 min/$103) and Radiance Renew (60 min/$110), which incorporate the hotel’s proprietary B|Africa products that blend beneficial native African plant extracts. Bodywork is especially blissful in the calmly quiet day spa, where the Men’s Executive (120 min/$160) includes a deep-tissue massage and hydrating skin booster facial, plus a gourmet lunch. For skin that needs extra comfort, the African Hydrating Milk Bath Wrap (60 min/$82) soothes with herbal exfoliation and a wrap of essential oils and nutrients to “re-mineralize” the skin. The tranquility lounge and plunge pools are inviting, but the saltwater floatation pool is the spa’s standout feature, letting your body feel buoyed in a reduced-gravity experience. After a day at the spa, stay for a meal or cocktails at one of the 12 Apostles’s four restaurants, each perched high on the hilltop with stunning ocean and sunset views. www.12apostleshotel.com/spa

—Kelsy Chauvin

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