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Liquid Gold

by Sandra Ramani
Olive Oil Spa

A spa just outside Florence features local olive oil from Tuscany

“It’s okay to fall asleep during the treatment—that’s when you regenerate,” smiles Christina Sgherea, spa manager at Villa La Massa, an idyllic hotel set on a lush estate just outside Florence, along the banks of the Arno River. Even without her go-ahead, it would be hard not to fall into at least a small snooze at this intimate spa located in the villa’s former cellars. In two dimly lit rooms featuring original stone walls and vaulted brick ceilings, Sgherea and her small team perform services from a menu that was recently revamped to focus on relaxation and to better reflect the Tuscan location.

Our favorite treatments at the Arno Spa celebrate Tuscany’s “liquid gold”: olive oil. Using simple, natural formulations—a base of Villa La Massa’s own estate-made olive oil mixed with one or two extras like aromatic essential oils, sea salt or olive pits—the signature facial, body scrub and massage work to nourish and hydrate the skin, while the warmth of the oils and the gentle, intuitive movements of the therapists help ease you into that restorative nap. villalamassa.com

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