Vermont's destination spas have come a long way since its au naturel mineral springs attracted affluent 19th-century city dwellers looking to escape the heat, but the principle remains the same: a natural place to restore mind and body. There are three big spas in Stowe and one in Manchester.
Equinox Resort's Avanyu Spa. The Equinox Resort's Avanyu Spa, with mahogany doors and beadboard wainscoting, feels like a country estate. At one end is an NCAA-length indoor pool and outdoor hot tub; at the other end are the treatment rooms. The signature 80-minute Spirit of Vermont combines Reiki, reflexology, and massage. In the co-ed relaxation room, spa-goers can nestle into overstuffed chairs next to a two-sided fireplace made of Vermont gneiss. The locker rooms, with marble accents and pottery-bowl wash basins, have steam rooms and saunas. 3567 Rte. 7A, Manchester, VT, 05254. 802/362-4700. www.equinoxresort.com/.
Spa at Stoweflake. One of the largest spas in New England, Spa at Stoweflake features a massaging hydrotherapeutic waterfall, a Hungarian mineral pool, 30 treatment rooms, a hair and nail salon, and 120 services, such as the Bingham Falls Renewal, named after a local waterfall. This treatment begins with a seasonal body scrub, rinsed off in a Vichy shower, followed by an aromatherapy oil massage. The spacious men's and women's sanctuaries have saunas, steam rooms, and Jacuzzis. 1746 Mountain Rd., (Rte. 108), Stowe, VT, 05672. 802/760-1083 or 800/253-2232. www.stoweflake.com.
Spa at Topnotch. The Spa at Topnotch provides an aura of calm, with its birch wood doors and accents, natural light, and cool colors. Signature services include a Vermont wildflower or woodspice treatment, which includes a warm herb wrap, exfoliation, and massage. Locker areas are spacious and spotless, with saunas, steam rooms, and Jacuzzis. The spa also has a full-service salon and shop, and classes in tai chi, yoga, and pilates are offered throughout the day in the nearby fitness center. 4000 Mountain Rd., (Rte. 108), Stowe, VT, 05672. 802/253-8585. www.topnotchresort.com.
The Spa and Wellness Center at Stowe Mountain Lodge. The Spa and Wellness Center at Stowe Mountain Lodge is a 21,000-square-foot facility that opened along with Stowe's newest resort in 2008. This is a state-of-the-art facility with 19 treatment rooms. Besides the expected array of facials, scrubs, and massages, the spa offers contemporary services like body composition analysis. 7412 Mountain Rd., (Rte. 108), Stowe, VT, 05672. 802/253-3560. www.stowemountainlodge.com.
The Woods Resort and Spa. At Killington, the Woods Resort and Spa is a European spa within an upscale condo complex. At the resort's clubhouse, the spa has a 75-foot indoor pool, sauna, steam room, and weight room. Spa services include massages, hot stone therapies, facials, salt scrubs, maple-sugar polishes, and mud treatments. 53 Woods La., Killington, VT, 05751. 802/422-3139. www.woodsresortandspa.com.
Jackson Gore Resort. Okemo's ski area spa has a slopeside outdoor heated pool, hot tubs, a sauna, steam rooms, a fitness center, and massages like Swedish, deep tissue, and hot stone. Okemo Ridge Rd., off Rte. 103, 77 Okemo Ridge Rd., Ludlow, VT, 05149. 802/228-1400. www.okemo.com.
The Spa at the Woodstock Inn and Resort. The newest spa in the state, the Spa at the Woodstock Inn and Resort features a stunning 10,000-square-foot nature-inspired facility with ten treatment rooms, a full-service salon, and sophisticated shop dedicated to wellness and relaxation. The spa's elegant, minimalist design accentuates its beautiful setting: natural light pours into the sparking dressing rooms and the comfortable firelit Great Room and an outdoor meditation courtyard with a hot soaking pool and Scandinavian-style sauna faces open sky. The mood is peaceful, quiet and serene; choose from a wide array of treatments and organic products. 14 The Green, Woodstock, VT, 05091. 802/457-1100. www.woodstockinn.com/Activities/Spa.
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