Relaxation Rocks

Sound Healing TrendThough incorporating music in the treatment room is not particularly new, the rhythms filling spas nowadays are on a whole new wavelength. Gone are the days of soft background music, as spas are jumping on an upbeat bandwagon and helping guests to reconnect and rock out. “Hearing creates a seamless connection to the world around us,” says Andrea Melotti, head of global operations at Hard Rock Hotels & Casinos. “Music has the unique ability to resonate with one’s mental, emotional, and physical health, and it also has the power to bring one’s focus into the present moment, truly allowing the individual to remove distractions from the outside world. A captivating musical journey coupled with a great spa treatment has helped to evolve the standard spa treatment into a very present and immersive experience.” At Rock Spa at Hard Rock Hotels & Casinos (multiple locations), clients get to rock out while they relax with treatments on the Rhythm and Motion spa menu such as Synchronicity (starting at $135, 50 minutes). This pulsating massage is set to hits spanning the decades to create a more Zeppelin than Zen experience. “The music is our secret recipe and serves as a tour guide for the journey,” says Melotti. “Playlists are meticulously curated to take the guest on a sojourn through not only their musical memories but also new spaces for discovery.”

Music hits a high note at Lush Spa (New York City and Philadelphia), as well. There, spa-goers are introduced to a new treatment routine with tracks dreamed up by Lush cofounder Mark Constantine and Grammy award-nominated record producer and musician Simon Emmerson—songs are created by folk collective The Imagined Village exclusively for the properties. “The sound selected in our spas is a visionary musical catalog,” says Gloria Salvio, spa manager for Lush Spa (New York City). “Our founders and musicians wanted to create something never done before for an individual to feel completely renewed from each and every treatment.”

The sensory experience isn’t limited to music, as this trend extends to animal noises, simple vibrations, live performance, and more. At The Spa at Four Seasons Resort Maui at Wailea (HI), whales’ underwater singing sets a tranquil tone for the Wai Vari ($135, 25 minutes), a floating massage performed in the warm ocean by a specialized massage therapist. On land, tuning forks bring harmony to spa-goers in the Acu-Vitality Treatment ($195, 80 minutes; $275, 1 hour 50 minutes) at the Holistic Healing Center at Nemacolin Woodlands Resort (Farmington, PA). “When we use sound therapy in a treatment, guests are able to reach a deeper state of relaxation far faster than with touch or even energy work,” says spa director Stephanie Wendell.

The benefits of sound are easier than ever to include in services, as high-tech tables now come embedded with speakers and vibration systems. For example, Gharieni’s Spa.Wave table produces binaural sounds and gentle acoustic waves; Living Earth Crafts’s Nuage Vector +Studio includes programmable speakers and acoustic resonance; and the Vibro-Acoustic sound table was developed by the founder of the Center for Neuroacoustic Research, Jeffrey Thompson, D.C., and is available at the Spa at Carillon Miami Beach (FL). “Sound can travel deeper than even the deepest massage session,” says Ronel Corbin, executive vice president of health, wellness, and spa at Carillon Miami Beach. “While laying on a sophisticated sound table, clients get to experience a massage while hearing music and feeling the same music vibration pass through the body.”

Whether the vibrations originate from innovative tables, custom playlists, or nature, on-trend tunes help guests appreciate the importance of sound by bringing it to the foreground. “Hearing is easily the sense most overlooked and underappreciated, as it is so integrated with our daily existence,” says Melotti. “Without hearing, one loses the most vital stimulus—the sound of the voice that brings language, sets thoughts astir, and connects us to other people.”