Pampering Primer: Seattle Spas Where Guests Feel Like VIPs

Photo courtesy of Yuan Spa
Photo courtesy of Courtesy Christy Carner Salon & Spa
Photo courtesy of Urban Float
By Corinne Whiting, Seattle Local Expert

The Seattle spa scene is seriously sensational, and you (yes, you) deserve to take part. In spas and salons across the region, remember how it feels to pause and take deep breaths, to allow someone else to cater to your needs, and to temporarily rediscover your Zen in a steamy sauna or a warming bath.

Serene spaces across town provide sanctuaries in which patrons have their hair, nails, skin and bodies attended to. Thanks to an array of newer facilities, unique treatments now prove viable options, too' think zones of "intuitive bodywork," infinity pools and futuristic float tank chambers. In the Pacific Northwest, where people are highly attuned to their bodies and their personal needs, most any treatment goes.  

While several luxe spas can be found downtown in the heart of the city (often attached to or nearby popular, high-end hotels), other venues find unexpected homes in neighborhoods like Fremont. Other spas require a brief (or long) road trip, but believe us when we say they are worth the journey. Travel to the wine-central zone of Woodinville, or go farther afoot to Cave B Inn, where views of the Gorge are worth the travel alone. Toss your worries to the wayside; it's time to get pampered. 

 

10. The Spa at Willows Lodge
Photo courtesy of Cave B Inn

The Spa at Willows Lodge in Woodinville, a short drive from downtown Seattle, offers a variety of revitalizing experiences that soothes the body and soul. Pick from decadent treatments that range from ancient, healing Lomi Lomi massages and detoxifying body wraps that nourish and restore skin to hot stone pedicures. Or, try the Carita Facials (available in only a few spas throughout the country) that exfoliates, detoxifies and refines skin texture. Before the treatment, guests can indulge in a steam, or they can relax in the hydrotherapy pool "amidst the tranquil and beautiful surroundings of [the venue's] hidden courtyard adorned with Japanese maples, ferns and sedums."

9. Spa at the Four Seasons
Photo courtesy of Cave B Inn

The Spa at Four Seasons Hotel invites guests to its urban oasis, inspired by the rugged natural beauty of the Northwest. Patrons here find a decor marked by water, basalt rock and glass tile that speaks to the venue's external surrounding and soothes one's interior wellness. The spa mixes Zen and urban chic to its signature treatments, and it offers the latest in anti-aging skincare technology. Guests enjoy extra luxuries like the Relaxation Lounge and Couple's Suite with views of Elliott Bay to the eucalyptus steam room and sleek changing rooms. Guests experiencing a full-day treatment package also enjoy exclusive access to the hotel's outdoor infinity pool deck and 24-hour fitness center.

8. Yuan Spa
Photo courtesy of Yuan Spa

Come on over to the Eastside for some luxurious pampering in an unexpected space. Tucked into a Bellevue megatower, this newish, 8,000-square-foot spa combines swank with traditional, all the while honoring owner Z Zhang's Chinese roots. Think pedicures, body scrubs, massage treatments and a communal bathing area. The hydrotherapy area resembles a traditional Asian bathhouse and features a decadent hot tub, salt-scrub bar, eucalyptus steam room and herbal cedar sauna, plus a 76-degree saltwater pool. The East-meets-West, old-meets-new venue is located one block from the Bellevue Hyatt Hotel at the corner of 106th Ave NE and 10th Ave NE, in the Belcarra building.

7. Intuitive Bodywork
Photo courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/felipeskroski/375043842/

In Fremont, this low-key space is less of a luxurious spa and more of a healing space in which trained professionals give massages that go beyond traditional bodywork. On the naturopathic side, Dr. Kristin Neibling joins the team; she is a graduate of Bastyr University who has a particular interest in working with those experiencing acute or chronic musculoskeletal pain and dysfunction that interferes with the ability to live life to the fullest. Her work includes multi-dimensional assessment and treatment, with methods of bodywork targeted at releasing tensions held deeply in the body and improving the function of the physical body. Some treatments may include: osseous manipulation, deep tissue massage, myofascial release, craniosacral therapy and visceral manipulation. Another on-site professional, Greer Nesbitt, is passionate about natural healing and specializes in pain relief, as well as fertility and anxiety/depression. She uses a combination of East Asian Medicine modalities.

6. Spa Noir
Photo courtesy of Spa Noir

Spa Noir is a casually intimate day spa located in bustling Belltown, not far from the city's downtown core. Spa staff members eagerly welcome visitors to experience the energy of this unique Seattle spa, where luxurious massages range from deep tissues and Swedish to hot stone and those specifically designed for pregnant patrons. tar Session The extremities are a map to our body. The "Star Session" focuses on hands, feet and head, attending to the bodies' five points. (A combination of massage, pressure points and steamed towels relieve tension and stress., and guests choose their own uplifting or soothing essential oils.) Service Benefit Packages mean that visitors who pay for any five services upfront receive the sixth for free. Enjoy body wraps, facials and other skin rejuvenating services, too.

5. Christy Carner Salon & Spa
Photo courtesy of Courtesy Christy Carner Salon & Spa

This multi-purpose salon features services for hair, nails, skin and beyond. Loyal patrons return to this friendly Fremont space for mani/pedis, lash extensions, body scrubs, even the "salt glow with self-tanner." Facials start with a skin analysis to ensure guests get the proper treatment for their specific skin type. Try the Express Facial (which consists of a skin analysis, cleansing, steam, extractions and moisturizer) or the Back Facial, which includes cleansing, steam, exfoliation, extractions, a customized mask and finishes with a moisturizing session. Trained and experienced professionals ensure that guests get top-notch attention at this airy venue that fills with light on sunny Seattle days.

4. Urban Float
Photo courtesy of Urban Float

Chase away your worries atop the water! During a float, guests are suspended effortlessly in a saturated solution of epsom salt and water within a light- and sound-controlled environment that reduces sensory stimulation and "effectively suspends the effects of gravity on the central nervous system." The float room and the float pod both offer single-person sensory deprivation experiences. Since the water is kept skin temperature, after a few minutes, participants lose the awareness of where their body ends and the water begins. Spa staff proponents claim that "resting in this unique environment creates profound changes within the mind/body system and actually improves the overall function of the brain and central nervous system."

3. The Spaahh at Hotel 1000
Photo courtesy of Courtesy Hotel 1000

This downtown spot pampers its guests royally. Treatment options include a range of facials (from the 30-minute "Express" to longer 75-minute sessions). Each facial includes a relaxing foot soak, professional skin consultation, a hand and arm massage and a facial massage. (The 75-minute treatments include a therapeutic back massage, too.) Add-on perks include scalp treatments, reflexology sessions, even "eye lift treatments" that features a specialty massage with contour masque that "reduces puffiness, dark circles and restores vitality." Decadent massage options include the Lavender Hot Stone, the Swedish Relaxation, the Deep Tissue and the Island Experience, which uses Lomi-Lomi style techniques.

2. Cave B Inn & Spa
Photo courtesy of Cave B Inn

A few hours from the hustle and bustle of Seattle, Cave B Inn and Spa offers stunning views of the estate vineyard and the surrounding Columbia River gorge. Cave B offers luxury accommodations including standalone guest houses, three suites and 25 "desert yurts" that are marked by simple splendor. Aside from the breathtaking natural scenery, Cave B offers Tendrils restaurant, an onsite spa and activities including fishing, vineyard tours, hiking, cross-country skiing and snowshoeing outings. Guests begin to feel the stress lift as they soon as they wander up the lavender-lined pathway to The Spa, where perks include a nature-inspired "Quiet Room" and treatments (from facials to massages) that use local products like basalt and river stones, lavender, grape juice and seeds.

1. Ummelina International Day Spa
Photo courtesy of Courtesy Ummelina Day Spa Retreat

UMMELINA takes downtown spa goers on an exotic, global adventure, with treatments that range from the Desert Water Foot Ritual to the Herbal Sea Salt Glow. The welcoming venue has created several natural environments that transport patrons "to distant lands, where for centuries indigenous people listened to the earth and gleaned its riches." In downtown Seattle, guests are accompanied by "guides who are accomplished, sure footed and well studied." These journeys utilize natural salts, muds, oils and herbs thoughtfully selected from all over the globe. Although the venue is ideal for individual patrons, it's also perfect for large groups (like bachelorette parties), thanks to its communal treatment room and its tea lounge.