When I travel, I make sure to experience my destination as authentically as possible. Even though my next trip is to a small Caribbean island, I plan to rent a car so I can visit all the local hot spots and see and soak up all the sights in between. Many spa-goers and summer travelers look for authenticity as well, and spas are tuning in by offering locally grown crops in their treatments. Talk about cultural immersion! The lush island delicacies also make it easier and more economical for spas; they don’t have to import products to get results. Here are a few fresh ingredients taking root on spa menus.
- Tropical citrus: At W Retreat & Spa – Vieques’ AWAY Spa (Puerto Rico) there is a variety of uncommon treatments to indulge in local island culture including those incorporating this juicy fruit. The Scrub ($130, 50 minutes) helps guests truly glow with a refreshing body polish prepared in-house by mixologists. The mojito/ginger sea salt/tropical citrus scrub offers a peek into tropical Puerto Rican culture.
- Puerto Rican fruit seeds: At Sheraton Puerto Rico Hotel & Casino’s Zen Spa, the rich and wholesome Sensorial Spa Ritual ($265, 1 hour 55 minutes) is inspired by the lively nature of Puerto Rico to rediscover the skin’s radiance. Native fruit seeds and plant essences exfoliate the skin creating a plateau for an aroma body massage utilizing acacia wood tool used to release deeply rooted tension. A body cocoon therapy and warm water cascade energize the body.
- Coffee Grains: Costa Rica Marriott San Jose is a colonial hacienda set on a 30-acre coffee plantation and is perfectly located for java junkies looking to explore the origins of coffee. The spa combines the stimulating and antioxidant properties of the coffee beans from the onsite plantation in the Costa Rica Coffee Scrub ($121, 50 minutes). Skin is left rejuvenated, while reducing the appearance of wrinkles and cellulite.
- Rainforest fruit: Sibö at Los Sueños Ocean & Golf Resort (Costa Rica) is the creator of all living things in the ancient and indigenous Costa Rican culture of Cabecar and Bri Bri. This Coco-luscious Facial ($135, 60 minutes) is the ultimate tropical indulgence and a journey for the senses. Using the natural enzymes found in mangos and pineapples, and rich, luxurious coconut oils, the skin is left radiant and glowing.
- Awa Root & Hawaiian Ginger: Kohala Spa at Hilton Waikoloa Village (HI) offers guests the Signature Naupaka White Flower Ritual (80 minutes) featuring a blend of local pure essential oils. Then, stimulate the senses with local healing herbs combined with a full body massage using a blend of white flower lotus and ylang ylang essential oils.
What does your spa do to help guests immerse themselves in the local culture?