Willow Stream

Rated one of the top 3 spas in North America, you receive the most regal of personal treatment at the Fairmont Scottsdale Princess’ Willow Stream spa. The body wraps feel like you are in a down cocoon, rather than the customary saran wrap and the facials feel like a whole body experience. On a cold day in December, with the sound of rain pelting on the roof, behind the soft music, I was actually happy not to be on the golf course.

They have the greatest assortment of facility rooms, including the standard dry and steam sauna. The Jacuzzi has a stream of water that can cascade down one wall and the optional cool plunge right next to it so you can alternate between relaxation and invigoration. The Inhalation Room is a new experience. It is dimly lit but you can still see to read. The comfy seating includes puffy cushions for your preferred positioning. The soft red tone walls are accented by sparse but substantial pottery. At room temperature, you breathe in the light essence of eucalyptus on your own terms as opposed to the usual blasting in the steam room – a completely soothing environment.

A break for lunch or snacks doesn’t feel like a break from the serene spa, as you lounge in your robe in the upstairs hall. Do check out the special outdoor waterfalls, inspired by the natural Havasupai. Enter the heated pool, complete with spa jets behind the waterfalls and enjoy the different angles of pulsating water to soothe sore spots.  Climb the nearby stairs or take the elevator to the roof pool for a great view of Camelback Mountain. This is a spa you want to make time for – all day in fact, to enjoy the many amenities at a leisure pace, between multiple treatments. You won’t regret it. See more at www.willowstream.com

 The Joya

Just one year new, The Joya Spa at Montelucia’s Intercontinental Hotel offers a very unique experience. Walk through the door of this Morrocan resort spa and you have traveled through time and space. The entry’s domed ceiling appears like the Taj Mahal. As you ascend the gorgeous winding stair case, you transcend to a different world. The dimly lit hallway leads to the treatment rooms via the Joy of Purification room which also has a domed ceiling emulating the sky of Granada Spain with 888 stars. This sight alone is worth the trip.  Choose from a variety of stones to set the intention of your journey. Check out the website at www.joyaspa.com for a complete listing of unique cultural experiences, including the Hammam warming and serenity rooms.

Agave Spa

The Westin Kierland has much to offer with their traditional Scottish theme that includes golf with optional kilts and a bagpiper, great restaurants, a fun team, water sports pool and the lovely Agave Spa. There you can take advantage of the Jacuzzi, dry and steam sauna in between treatments, sipping lemonade with agave nectar.  What is special here are the silky soft sheets on the treatment tables, like no other, that give you an instant feeling of serenity. Place your troubles in the Native American basket and they will disappear during your treatment as they hang on the outside door. Now that is healing magic at its finest! More info at www.kierlandresort.com