Spa Guide: LA confidential

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31 December 2013

It’s pamper-plus in Los Angeles as luxury hotels turn on the star spa treatment.

Los Angeles has long been a lucrative market for health and wellness, and its hotels are now becoming sought-after locales for rejuvenation. From the extravagant to the intimate, the recently renovated to the designer newcomers, these 10 hotel spas offer exclusive treatments with a healthy dose of Californian chic to justify a trip to the City of Angels.

1. Spa Montage

Montage Beverly Hills

225 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills.
+1 310 860 7840. spamontage.com/beverlyhills

The Montage Beverly Hills is steps away from Rodeo Drive and its luxurious Spa Montage will woo even the most serious shopper. Inspired by the bathing rituals of ancient Spain, the spa’s centrepiece is a soaking mineral pool backed by a two-storey mosaic-tiled wall evocative of Moorish-style design. Five of the 17 treatment rooms are equipped for wet services, and men’s and women’s changing areas include herbal steam rooms, saunas, whirlpools and deluge showers. The 1858sq m space also encompasses a fitness centre, Kim Vo- hair salon, yoga studio, gift boutique and a co-ed gathering spot with chaise longue (and curtains for privacy). New to the spa: Classic ESPA facials and Tat’z Nail Art.

2. The Peninsula Spa

The Peninsula Beverly Hills

9882 South Santa Monica Boulevard, Beverly Hills. 
+1 310 551 2888. peninsula.com/beverlyhills

The intimate Peninsula Beverly Hills hotel encapsulates the glamour of a Beverly Hills estate. Its 446sq m spa opened in 1991 and an update has cloaked the seven treatment rooms, the Nail Suite, the Serenity Lounge and private changing rooms in soft hydrangea blues, white Calcutta marble, opalescent glass and teak surfaces. Shiffa Precious Gemstone treatments are the spa’s signature offerings – shiffa means “to heal” in Arabic; the products are imported from Dubai. Customised treatments, using diamond, ruby, sapphire or emerald-saturated oils along with dried herbs and flowers, purport to balance the body’s energy. Treatments are also offered in poolside cabanas on the hotel’s rooftop.

3. Spa at Mr C Beverly Hills

Mr C Beverly Hills

1224 Beverwil Drive, Los Angeles. 
+1 310 277 2800. mrchotels.com 

New to the scene, the Spa at Mr C Beverly Hills opened in mid-2013. Owners Ignazio and Maggio Cipriani engaged designer Marcello Pozzi to come up with a stylish look for the 93sq m spa. The result: a subterranean sanctuary sheathed in travertine mosaic and accented with chrome details. The jewel box of a space neatly fits two teak-walled treatment rooms, a relaxation corner with a ceiling of twinkly lights, an Essie-stocked nail salon and two private locker rooms, each outfitted with a steam shower and vanity area. Treatments feature the spa’s exclusive Italian skincare line, Illumia – the age-defying Signature Mr C Facial uses the gold micro-particle Luxury Serum cream. Poolside and in-room spa services are offered, too.

4. LeSpa by Sofitel

Sofitel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills

8555 Beverly Boulevard, Los Angeles. 
+1 310 228 6777. lespala.com

In 2006, Sofitel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills unveiled a multimillion-dollar hotel renovation and a new addition: a 465sq m spa. Designed by North American-based studio Yabu Pushelberg, the onyx-hued LeSpa by Sofitel has a contemporary look with a mod twist (even the robes are black). French skincare lines Decleor and Carita feature in luxurious treatments – the signature Flawless Facial uses Carita’s Diamond Cream and Perfect Gold Serum with patented Pro-Lift technology to smooth fine lines. New and exclusive: NanoSpa Immersion Therapy, where millions of oxygen-rich nano-bubbles permeate and plump the skin. Within walking distance of Robertson Boulevard, Beverly Center and West Hollywood’s Third Street, this spa is well situated on the shopping (and dining) trail.

5. Spa by La Prairie

Hotel Bel-Air

701 Stone Canyon Road, Los Angeles. 
+1 310 909 1681. hotelbelair.com 


Once a hideaway for screen legends such as Marilyn Monroe, Cary Grant and Grace Kelly, the pretty-in-pink Hotel Bel-Air reopened in 2011 after a two-year hiatus to reveal a refreshed look and a new 381sq m spa. In partnership with the renowned Swiss skincare line, the so-named Spa by La Prairie offers treatments infused with “rich” ingredients such as diamond powder, caviar, meteorite dust and kelp. The La Prairie Advanced Marine Biology Facial is a popular draw – it involves lying atop a warm water-filled hydromat to mimic the sensation of the sea. For treatments in extra tranquillity – or for spa parties up to 10 – the private Enclave suite comes with its own shaded patio and a waterfall. 

6. Aqua Star Babor Beauty Spa

The Beverly Hilton

9876 Wilshire Boulevard, Beverly Hills. 
+1 310 887 6048. beverlyhilton.com 

The Beverly Hilton is a Los Angeles icon. Since 1955, it has welcomed celebrities, royalty and presidents; for the past 35 years it has hosted The Golden Globe Awards. The glitzy Aqua Star Pool – the largest heated hotel pool in Beverly Hills – forms the backdrop to the Aqua Star Babor Beauty Spa. In June 2013, the newly branded 283sq m space showed off a modernist redesign. The celebrity-requested signature Red Carpet Ready Facial runs for 80 minutes, using Babor Beauty Fluids with micro-current technology to tone and lift. For poolside pampering with a side of star-spotting, have a massage, mini-facial or foot rub in a cabana.

7. Exhale Hollywood

Loews Hotel

1755 North Highland Avenue, Hollywood. 
+1 310 491 1376. exhalespa.com
 
In early 2013, Exhale opened another location – on the fifth floor of the Loews Hollywood Hotel. The spa is adjacent to a pool area that takes in sweeping views of Hollywood and its hills. The spa menu reflects the brand’s balanced approach to wellness – signatures such as Exhale True Facial are listed alongside Eastern-inspired treatments including acupuncture and cupping. The airy 650sq m space has seven treatment rooms, two co-ed Zen lounges, aromatherapy-infused steam rooms and a nail lounge. For every hour of spa therapy, guests receive two hours of hotel pool time.

8. Spa at Four Seasons Hotel Los Angeles

Four Seasons Hotel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills

300 South Doheny Drive, Los Angeles. 
+1 310 273 2222. fourseasons.com/losangeles/spa

The stalwart Four Seasons Hotel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills buzzes year-round with tourists, celebrities, execs and press junkets. In 2000, the property opened a 345sq m spa, but be warned – booking a treatment during awards season is tough if you’re not A-list. The spa’s lobby and relaxation areas were recently refreshed with custom furnishings and dark-wood detailing against a Champagne-inspired palette. The Rejuvenating Oxygen Facial, which uses products from Australian company Intraceuticals, is a popular pre-event treatment – its layered infusion of hyperbaric oxygen and hyaluronic acid promises radiant skin without the downtime. What’s new? The skin-soothing Honey Dream Body Treatment with honey, royal jelly and beeswax. For poolside relaxation, massages and mani/pedis are available in cabanas.

9. The Ritz-Carlton Spa

The Ritz-Carlton Los Angeles

900 W Olympic Boulevard, Los Angeles.
+1 213 763 4400. ritzcarlton.com/losangeles

The sophisticated Ritz-Carlton Spa is a welcome retreat from the mayhem of downtown’s Staples Center and LA Live. Opened in 2010, the contemporary 743sq m space wows with sumptuous details. Think textured wallpapers, glamorous light fittings, gold-and-white tiled eucalyptus steam rooms and plush circular sofas in the co-ed Sanctuary area for prolonged lounging. Nine iPod- equipped treatment rooms allow guests to customise music to their service. A star-worthy splurge: the Red Carpet Ready spa experience, which runs for just under four hours and pampers with celebrity-loved Eminence products.

10. Ciel Spa & Robert Vetica Salon

SLS Hotel at Beverly Hills

465 South La Cienega Boulevard, Los Angeles. 
+1 310 246 5560. cielatsls.com

In the lobby of the SLS Hotel at Beverly Hills, Philippe Starck’s artistic touch weaves the avant-garde with European elegance beneath Venetian chandeliers. Ascend a level and the pure white Ciel Spa offers a more ethereal setting – sheer curtains, sensuous textiles and sculptures impart a whimsical feel. The four-year-old, 465sq m space includes six treatment rooms, “experience” showers with Hansgrohe fixtures, custom massage beds equipped with music therapy technology, and a relaxation lounge offering spa snacks (and Champagne) by acclaimed chef José Andrés. Signature treatment: the Nirvana massage, choreographed by two therapists. In late 2012, Robert Vetica – who has styled the manes of Scarlett Johansson and Salma Hayek – opened a full-service salon in the spa.

Source Qantas The Australian Way January 2014

Marina Chetner

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