Every year, we celebrate 10 outstanding spas for their passionate commitment to wellness, sustainability, environmental stewardship and natural and organic living. This year, Organic Spa Media is proud to honor these leading spas for elevating the industry to new and higher standards of health and wellness.
Best Gourmet Organic
Bernardus Lodge & Spa, U.S.
With a restaurant that’s hosted such foodie luminaries as Julia Child (whose signature adorns a kitchen wall), a house wine label, and onsite farms, vineyards and gardens, this resort in California’s fertile central valley celebrates all things culinary. Don’t miss signature experiences like a chef’s table dinner—hosted in the main kitchen, in the middle of all the action—and spa treatments like Lavender Bliss, which features a scrub made from resort-grown lavender. bernarduslodge.com
Best Natural Environment
Dorado Beach, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve / Puerto Rico
On Puerto Rico’s lush northern coast, 50 acres that once belonged to financier and conservationist Laurance S. Rockefeller are now home to a top-tier Ritz-Carlton resort bordered by tropical forests, coral reefs, an 11-mile trail and plenty of undeveloped land.
The dreamy spa here also highlights the verdant setting with garden and treehouse treatment suites, outdoor lounges and water circuits, and unique services like the Hammock Massage, performed while you’re blissfully swinging in the breeze. ritzcarlton.com
Best Romantic Escape
Four Seasons Resort Bali at Sayan, Bali
Ubud is considered Bali’s arts, culture and wellness hub, and this spectacular resort, set in a lush forest just outside of town, reflects those traditions in everything from its design to its thoughtful programming. Reconnect with a loved one (and yourself) with a guided kayak trip down the Ayung River, a traditional blessing ceremony or a treatment at the Sacred River Spa, where the menu focuses on services that balance, bring focus, and unite the body, mind and spirit. We also love the new Sacred Naps, which take you back to a comforting childhood ritual. fourseasons.com
Best Going Solo
Canyon Ranch Lenox, U.S.
Repeat guests of this iconic destination spa often say a Canyon Ranch visit is “like coming home,” thanks both to the centering personal journeys they enjoy while here and the sense of community found while doing so. While itineraries are customized based on each guest’s needs, the spa’s nurturing atmosphere, bonding activities and perks like a hosted Captain’s Table at every meal help solo travelers instantly feel like part of the gang. canyonranch.com
Best Immersive Wellness Program
Grand Hotel Kronenhof, Switzerland
Do laps in a vast indoor pool, follow a restorative hydrotherapy circuit, sweat it out with a personal Pilates session and float in a salt grotto—all while surrounded by spectacular views of Switzerland’s Engadin Valley. This historic hotel’s 21,528-square-foot center is a one-stop hub for all things wellness, whether you want to just relax with pampering treatments (think alpine massages and honey scrubs) or create a more holistic program of spa, fitness and off-site activities. kronenhof.com
Best New Wellness Program
Rancho Valencia, U.S.
The only Relais & Chateaux in Southern California, Rancho Valencia offers impeccable service, spacious villas with private Jacuzzis and firepits, a tranquil yoga pavilion, ocean-side golf, a gorgeous Mediterranean-style spa and unbeatable coastal cuisine. If that’s not enough, Rancho’s new customized, integrative wellness program, the Wellness Collective, is based on the science of epigenetics and offers six programs for guests to choose from. rvwellnesscollective.com
Best Girlfriend Getaway
The Lodge at Woodloch, U.S.
This beautiful property in the Pennsylvania Pocono Mountains is a nature-lover’s delight, with an on-site master herbalist and organic farmer, hikes to a nearby nature preserve, a spacious spa with an irresistible menu of wellness treatments and a still pond for deep thinking, relaxing and contemplation—or good talks with a close friend!
Environmental conservation is a key mandate, and farm-to-table seasonal menus are inspired by the herbs and vegetables lovingly tended at the Lodge, and supplemented by organic farms nearby. Kayaking or hiking at a nearby wildlife sanctuary will inspire you with the oneness of nature. thelodgeatwoodloch.com
The Art of Living Retreat Center, U.S.
Originally built as a Transcendental Meditation Retreat Center by a follower of the Beatles' Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, this bucolic 381-acre property outside Charlotte, NC, was sold to the nonprofit, The Art of Living, in 2011. With more than 10,000 centers worldwide in 155 countries, this is the centerpiece, where guests will find abundant peace and tranquility.
Commit to an authentic Ayurvedic detox (panchakarma), or the signature Happiness Program, which features breathing exercises, yoga, meditation and shared wisdom, is life-changing. The recently renovated Spa offers traditional Ayurvedic treatments like shirodhara, abhyangha and marma therapy, consultation with an Ayurvedic doctor and some of the best and most authentic yoga and meditation teachers anywhere. The cuisine is exclusively vegetarian, much of it from the organic garden on property. artoflivingretreatcenter.org
Best Mind/Body Wellness
Mahasukha Spa at Menla, U.S.
The brainchild of Robert Thurman, professor of Indo-Tibetan studies at Columbia University and the Dalai Lama, Menla is a Tibetan-style mountain retreat in upstate New York that more than fulfills its stated mission: to be a place for health, healing and spiritual evolution, based on the wisdom of Tibetan medicine.
The beautiful wooded property is a base for hiking on nearby Panther Mountain, contemplative walks in the woods, meditation, workshops on spiritual health, Buddhism and more, but most of all, the program focuses on ways to restore balance and well-being to the mind and body. Consultations are available with two talented Tibetan doctors, who have also trained the spa therapists in traditional Tibetan healing practices like Kunye, cupping, tapping and moxibustion. Most of all, Menla is a deeply spiritual, restorative, peaceful place, where you can reconnect with your higher self and ponder life’s true meaning. menla.us
Best Yoga Spa
Pura Vida Retreat & Spa, an R&R Resorts Destination, Costa Rica
Pura Vida is a lush and beautiful spot for spiritual refreshment, tucked on seven acres 4,900 feet above sea level, far atop the Costa Rican capital of San Jose. Tropical birds and wildlife, lush forests, rivers and waterfalls, and local hot springs are all within reach, in a serene environment.
Pura Vida offers fresh smoothies, custom-blended chai and organic wheat grass elixirs and is also stocked with Costa Rican and Central American beers; sulfite-free, organic wines; fresh-squeezed juices; and delicious healthy cuisine. With four yoga halls, all with beautiful panoramic views, hatha classes are offered several times every day, and a retreat calendar filled with a wide range of yoga retreats hosted by experts. The Wellness Center at Pura Vida Spa offers Ayurvedic, holistic and signature therapeutic treatments that promote a powerful sense of balance and healing. rrresorts.com