These hotels are bringing socially distant, sanitary spa treatments directly to your room
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The coronavirus pandemic has wreaked havoc on many things we long took for granted — including visits to hotel spas. Many guests are reluctant to get their usual manicures, pedicures, massages and facials because of cleanliness and safety concerns, leaving spas scrambling to reassure them.
Despite this, there are travelers who still want to visit the spa to help with pandemic-related stress. So for those who could use some pampering and downtime, TPG talked to several hotels offering an extra level of safety by allowing guests to enjoy spa services in the privacy of their own rooms or in socially distant spaces. Below are six hotels and resorts that offer safer spa services, along with the protocols they’ve put in place to make guests comfortable — and safe.
Located in a meadow surrounded by pine trees, The Resort at Paws Up is set within 37,000 acres in Greenough, Montana. This luxury ranch is home to one of the few outdoor spas in the U.S., known as Spa Town. Made up of multiple tents, there are full baths and showers in welcome tents, while individual treatment tents have sinks, heated massage tables and views of the meadows — complete with horses.
Available services include different types of massages, body wraps and scrubs and facial treatments. You can choose to stay in the main ranch, the Island Lodge on Salmon Lake or even go glamping. In the world of COVID-19 travel, the resort provides full sanitation and linen changes between guests.
The resort is also following regulations established by the Missoula County government, including completion of a Personal Care Service Plan covering employee and client health screening; use of personal protective clothing and equipment; disinfection of instruments used for personal care services between clients; maintaining six feet of social distancing between clients and staff; screening employees and guests for COVID-19 symptoms; requiring face masks when providing and receiving services; and creating and enforcing an enhanced cleaning and sanitizing plan.
St. Barths reopened for tourism on June 22, 2020, and the Caribbean island is on the CDC’s list of low-risk COVID-19 destinations, along with Fiji, New Zealand, Thailand and others. The boutique Le Barthélemy Hotel and Spa is using a sanitation and hygiene protocol that follows guidelines from the CDC, the World Health Organization, St. Barths Territory and the French government.
The hotel has adapted its services to meet sanitation and social distancing expectations by allowing guests to schedule treatments in the comfort of their own suite. Treatments will include all signature La Mer products available in the spa. All aestheticians and massage therapists wear personal protective equipment (PPE) and practice extra hand hygiene, in addition to participating in required regular health check-ins for hotel staff. High-touch elements of the hotel will be frequently sanitized.
However, if a guest opts to use the hotel’s spa facilities, access is by appointment only, so they will essentially have the entire facility to themselves. The hotel implements diligent cleaning after each use with all areas getting wiped down and sterilized. Because the hotel is intimate — there are only 46 rooms and suites — it’s able to take a private and personalized approach to ensure the well-being of its guests, putting health first while also providing a luxurious and relaxing experience.
Commercial flights to Rwanda started up again on Aug. 1, and this African nation is one of the few welcoming U.S. citizens. One of the nation’s premier properties — Singita Kwitonda Lodge — just reopened, making this a great option for a luxury spa trip, especially since all treatments are offered in the comfort of guests’ suites or on their own private outdoor deck.
In line with the latest recommendations from authorities like the World Health Organization, the lodge has enacted protocols to ensure a safe environment for guests including sterilization of suites between each guest as well as each day of a guest’s stay; extra cleaning measures within suites focusing on high-contact areas and items such as door handles, remote controls, coffee machines and board games; and increased cleaning frequency of fitness and wellness areas with a focus on high-contact areas. The lodge’s staff members are also required to undergo temperature checks daily.
This luxury couples-only all-inclusive resort reopened on Aug. 1, 2020, at which time it also resumed offering in-suite spa treatments for guests. Its oceanfront Kai Mer Spa remains closed. The resort received its COVID-19 certification from the government of St. Lucia’s Department of Health and Wellness, with comprehensive protection protocols in place. Staff have regular health screenings, undergo temperature checks and wear PPE.
For guests, the resort has implemented a door seal to signify a cleaned and sanitized suite, hand sanitizer stations throughout the resort and touchless temperature checks to help monitor guest and staff health daily.
The resort’s 36 spacious indoor and outdoor plunge pool butler suites were designed to ensure privacy and are ideal for social distancing. Guests can sunbathe on their private pool deck and have the choice of lounging in a cabana at the pool or beach. A wide range of spa treatments are available including massages (some available for two), scrubs, facials, manicures and pedicures.
The Cape, located in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, has collaborated with Hyatt and BlueNet Hospitals to create a robust system of safety and sanitization measures that meet federal and global health guidelines. The hotel is also participating in Mexico’s federal certification called Punto Limpio, or “Clean Spot,” to promote the safety of guests and colleagues. Transportation vehicles are disinfected between every use and guest luggage is disinfected twice: once before being placed into the vehicle and once when it’s unloaded at the hotel.
Guests are given specialized care kits which include face masks, disinfectant wipes and hand sanitizer. Rooms are assigned to allow for maximum distance between guests, and rooms are left empty for 24 to 48 hours between guests to allow for the sanitation processes to take effect.
The majority of amenities at The Cape can now be enjoyed in-room, including spa treatments, Baja wine and mezcal tastings, cooking classes and more. While the gym is closed, the hotel is offering distanced outdoor fitness classes and options for in-room fitness equipment and virtual training with celebrity trainer/resort partner Modu Seye.
The resort is currently offering a special five-day Mind, Body & Soul package with a focus on physical, emotional, and spiritual wellness. Guests stay in a spacious private villa, participate in daily fitness classes led by their personal trainer, enjoy guided meditation sessions, receive a massage or facial treatments and savor custom-designed, locally sourced, nourishing meals.
The inn is one of Cape Cod, Mass.’s most popular destinations for family vacations, romantic hideaways and wellness getaways. During the ongoing pandemic, only a limited number of guests will be allowed in the spa, based on recommendations from local and state health departments. Staff members have received training on COVID-19 safety and sanitation protocols, with more comprehensive training for our teams with frequent guest contact. All team members and guests must wear masks in public spaces.
The property is already ideal for social distancing, due to its waterfront layout with over 30 individual buildings spread across 25 acres. The entire property has been deep cleaned and sanitized, and multiple cleanings are done each day. Hand-sanitizing stations are available throughout the property and personal protection equipment (PPE) amenity kits featuring disinfecting gel, nitrile rubber gloves and masks are provided for guests.
Available services include massages, nail treatments and body treatments, all following the International Spa Association and CDC protocols. The Inn offers 12 adult-only Spa Suites with either one king or two queen-size beds, oversized hydrotherapy tubs, saunas, steam showers and fireplaces. Guests can enjoy private in-room massages and body-care treatments upon request. There’s also a personal yoga mat and collection of wellness books to encourage and inspire guests. While the weather is still warm, private outdoor cabanas at the spa are available for treatments.
These six hotels — and many others around the world — are doing their best to ensure their guests can enjoy the spa services they crave, but in a safe environment as the COVID-19 pandemic continues. Things to consider before settling on the property that’s right for you include cleaning protocols, availability of in-room spa services, PPE offering for both guests and staff and enforcement of social distancing and mask-wearing. Despite the persistence of the pandemic, you can still plan a wonderful spa vacation, but you’ll definitely want to do your homework before you book.
Featured photo of Al Maha, a Luxury Collection Desert Resort and Spa in Dubai, courtesy of the hotel
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