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Treat Yourself at the 10 Best Spas in Santa Barbara



spa
/spä/

noun

1. the universal cure for what ails you - and even what doesn't ail you

Whether you're happy or sad, energetic or tired, healthy or under the weather, a trip to the spa just sounds right. There's something about those fluffy robes, dimly lit rooms and softly lingering scents that can charm even the most sensible patron into eagerly signing up for expensive, indulgent treatments.

A day of pampering? Don't mind if I do! 

So if you're in Santa Barbara and you're looking to slip into something a little more comfortable - be it a massage or a sauna or something else entirely - this is the list for you. Here you'll find the 10 best spas in town and all the information you need to book an appointment or two.

Many of the best resorts have spas built right into them, so if you're staying at the Four Seasons Resort the Biltmore Santa Barbara or the Bacara Resort and Spa, you're all set. Even if you're not staying at either of these places, you are welcome to visit the spas at each. With your treatment you gain access to the pool area at both hotels, something certainly worth considering.

If you'd rather visit an independent spa, try Evolutions in downtown Santa Barbara. This award-winning medical and beauty spa has oodles of options from which to choose. And if, against all odds, nothing here suits you? Try any of the other seven places on the list!

 


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Local favorite spa! "Cielo" is the Spanish word for heaven and that's exactly where you'll think you've landed when you enter Cielo Spa Boutique, located just outside the main shopping area of downtown Santa Barbara. Designed to be a haven for working professionals and busy moms, Cielo offers pampering treatments large and small, from lash tinting to deep tissue massages. For a real treat, book the "Pure Heaven" package and enjoy a massage, facial, exfoliation and mud treatment, followed by a light lunch. Off street parking is available, as is a private entrance so you can exit just as peacefully as you arrived.




Best kept secret. For affordable massages, Evan's relaxing station is the place to go. Nothing fancy, no frills and you even keep your clothes on. Evan's is a local's favorite. You can't make an appointment; it's walk-ins only. Chefs, winemakers and other hardworking Santa Barbara folks pop in during the week for a quick refresher. You can choose a table massage, chair massage or foot reflexology session. And the best part? One hour of any treatment (or a combination of treatments) costs only $35. It may not be posh, but the atmosphere is hushed and the staff are very professional.




Most exclusive spa destination. If your hotel checklist looks something like this - beachfront, exclusive amenities, possible celebrity sightings, ridiculous levels of hospitality - then the Four Seasons Resort The Biltmore Santa Barbara is where you want to stay. The spa is open daily from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Enjoy the serenity of any of the 11 treatment rooms or opt to receive one of several services in the privacy of your own room. There are also spa suites available, complete with fireplaces, for extra indulgent (or group) treatments. The Biltmore is located just across the street from Butterfly Beach, one of the most pristine white sand beaches in Southern California. Access to the exclusive Coral Casino Beach and Cabana Club comes with your reservation.


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Most unique spa experience. Take an unexpected detour while exploring downtown Santa Barbara and wander in to Salt Cave Santa Barbara for a lesson on halotherapy, the process of treating a variety of lung and dermal ailments with a salted atmosphere. Salt Cave Santa Barbara is home to two salt caves - the larger of which is currently considered the largest salt cave in North America - that are maintained at an even temperature and humidity. The air within each cave is treated to be free of pollutants and is full of naturally occurring minerals. Relax in the zero-gravity chairs to the sounds of gentle music for an unbelievably soothing. Additional treatments, like massages, are available. Reservations are recommended.




Best views. Book a treatment at the Spa at El Encanto to experience one of Santa Barbara's most legendary properties. Perfectly situated in a secluded, quiet part of town, the El Encanto is famous for its legendary views and luxury standards. This full-service spa has seven treatment rooms, including a specialty wet treatment room and couples' room. The Spa also features a relaxation lounge, showers, steam rooms and private lockers. Each service concludes with a selection of detoxifying teas as you enjoy breathtaking views from the patio. After your spa visit, you should stroll the lush grounds or stop in the restaurant for a refreshing cocktail. You'll feel transported above the hustle and bustle of daily life - exactly the goal at the El Encanto.




Best day trip destination. This Southern California resort and spa located in beautiful Ojai offers guests a place to get away from it all. Most famously, guests also enjoy complimentary access to Spa Ojai with a scheduled spa treatment. Spa Ojai is 31,000 square-foot day spa with two pools, a fully-equipped workout room, mind and body studio, spa boutique and artist cottage and apothecary. Pampering treatments include massages, facials and packages that highlight local, seasonal resources including freshly harvested, resort-grown produce and flowers. There is also a spa cafe onsite. Spa Ojai provides a stunning backdrop for a day of rest - it's so pretty that you'll want to bring your camera!




Greenest spa in the area! Le Reve is a the first green-certified health and beauty spa in Santa Barbara. Conveniently located downtown, Le Reve is the perfect place to go for a little pampering, whether you're looking to relax for the day or just an hour. It's a great destinations for couples and groups, too. Popular treatments include facials, massages and waxing, but there is a full menu of options to delight you from head to toe. La Reve also has a boutique stocked with indulgent treats and gift ideas. Parking is available in nearby city lots, and some of the area's best restaurants are within easy walking distance.




Best place to get away from it all. The Spa at the Bacara is a treat - pure indulgence for even the most jaded traveler. Set above the calming blue waters of the Pacific, this award-winning spa features an expertly trained staff, an adults-only pool, Jacuzzi, unique redwood sauna, eucalyptus steam room, fireside lounge areas, wellness classes and a rooftop terrace. In the warm weather months, guests can treat themselves to poolside cabana services that include refreshing treatments for your head, face and body. After spa time, you might take a dip in one of the saline pools or simply walk down to the beach. Located on 78 acres acres of pristine coastline on Santa Barbara's northern shore, the Bacara offers you a taste of unbridled luxury.




Best health spa. Evolutions Medical & Day Spa is the place to go to really cure what ails you - whether it's a medical skin condition or just a bad case of the rundown-and-worn-outs. Using a combination of technology and innovative practices, the technicians at Evolutions treat a wide variety of concerns, including acne, wrinkles, sun damage, cellulite, stretch marks and unwanted hair. Medical treatments range from Botox and dermal fillers to tattoo removal. Pampering aesthetic treatments range from teeth whitening to facials. This award-winning spa has 6,000 square feet of space for relaxation. Enjoy full shower and locker facilities, dry eucalyptus saunas and a peaceful tea lounge area.




Best secret hideaway. You'd never guess that tucked down this busy Santa Barbara side street is an award-winning spa with a peaceful private garden, complete with twinkling lights and a reflecting pool. FLOAT specializes in massages, facials and body treatments designed to alleviate stress and inspire renewal. Its relaxing setting is designed to make you stay "until you feel so light that you could float." Combination and party packages for bachelorettes and celebrations are available. This day spa is close to shopping, museums and restaurants. FLOAT offers in-room treatments at the nearby Kimpton Canary hotel too, for a truly luxe weekend experience.


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Meet Geneva Ives

Geneva Ives moved to Santa Barbara in 2000 on a whim (ok, and to go to college) and never looked back. She loves Santa Barbara because it’s really one of America’s greatest small towns - it...  More About Geneva

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