Pampering takes on epic proportions at these wellness wonderlands. Scattered across the globe, these superlative retreats prioritize personalized service, exquisite interiors, and draw on their rich backdrops for treatment inspiration. We composed a list of some favorites, which include a Buddhist-accented sanctuary on the banks of the Chao Phraya River in Bangkok, an ornate hammam in Marrakech, and a rejuvenating thermal spa, sprawled on the foothills of the Swiss Alps. We invite you to spoil yourself and luxuriate in some of the world’s most stand-out spas.
The cosmopolitan massage menu at this tropically-accented sanctum, a mélange of Thai, Chinese and Indian traditions, pays homage to the nearby Chao Phraya River, which was once a vibrant global trading hub. The Nuad Bo Rarn, a yogic manipulation and acupressure combo, which was first introduced at Wat Pho, one of Bangkok’s oldest Buddhist temples, remains a consistent crowd pleaser. Decked with its own aqua-therapy lounge, sauna, and vitality pool, the hushed spa is a perfect antidote to Bangkok’s urban sprawl, from the moment guests drift in through its open-air courtyard.
As South Florida’s largest spa, this seaside refuge has everything from cupping to cryotherapy. Detox options, like the Ginger Coconut Argan Sugar Glow and the Rejuvenating Sea Wrap & Massage, look to the nearby beach for cues, though the spa also draws inspiration from European hydrotherapy traditions, best embodied by an impressive water circuit, which pairs a tropical rain shower with an herbal laconium, or a dry sauna-esque room. A dedicated wellness concierge, stationed at the resort’s greenery-filled lobby, will swiftly compose your spa wish list before you even set foot on the property, underscoring the Carillon’s emphasis on hands-on hospitality.
The twelve cabins at this sublime hacienda escape wreath a cenote, or sinkhole, ubiquitous across the Yucatan. The spa’s aesthetic is au naturel, mixing Brazilian hardwood with milky limestone floors, while its treatments tip their hats to longstanding Mayan rituals. Local shamans make ceremonial cameos at the onsite temescals, or pre-Hispanic Mexican sweat lodges, harking back to an ancient era. Though the therapists’ sleek blue jumpsuits are decidedly contemporary. As is the saltwater floatarium, and cavernous, gold-encased steam room, featured stops on the spa’s leisurely three-hour Fountain's Flow Signature Ritual.
Wellness wanderers, including luminaries like Nietzsche and Rilke, have flocked to this Rhine Valley town for centuries, lured by a healing hot spring in nearby Tamina Gorge. Those restorative waters are most certainly the draw at this otherworldly thermal spa (even the guest rooms at the resort rely on alpine spring water), an 80,000-square-foot sprawl with over 100 painted pinewood columns. The cathedral-like complex takes its soaking seriously: there’s an outdoor pool with hillside vistas and starlit views, an indoor water bar, and complimentary access to a clutch of public thermal baths, including Tamina Therme.
Thermes Marins Monte-Carlo combines innovation and savoir-faire in a 71,000 Square feet facility dedicated to wellness, fitness and preventive health. This is the perfect place for a luxurious and healthy break in the heart of Monaco, facing the Mediterranean. Beauty, slimming and relaxation are all within reach thanks to a team of multidisciplinary experts who assess every need and desire, providing a holistic solution in the way of personalised treatments and protocols. The Thermes Marins are also accessible from Hotel de Paris Monte-Carlo, also a member of The leading Hotels of the World.
Blessed by the luxe French fashion and fragrance house, Givenchy (there are only three such haute couture spas in the world), this exclusive den is all marble finishes and sleek black-and-gold lines. To kick off the indulging, guests are provided with a perfumed pocket square that is tucked into their robes, letting the scent remain for the entirety of their relaxation journey, which may feature stops at the Heat Experience, a toasty circuit that includes the sauna, hammam, caldarium, ice fountain, and sensory showers, a dedicated nail studio, and a state-of-the-art fitness center, kitted out with Technogym equipment.
Nested in one of Morocco’s grandest dames, this sprawling subterranean refuge is a seductive blend of marble and majorelle blue, with Moorish lamps galore. If you catch a whiff of orange blossom, it’s coming from the spa’s private garden, lined with century-old citrus, palm, and bougainvillea trees. Local bounty, like argan oil and rose water, make frequent appearances in the treatments here. Standouts include the Royal Hammam experience, which is equal parts intense and soothing: it begins with a black soap exfoliation (made from pressed olives and salt), and ends with a cosseting mud body mask.
The Shape Club is the epicenter of the Lily of the Valley concept, with 6,500 square feet devoted to wellness, weight loss and sport. Featuring a large fitness room, fitness class studios, a heated semi-Olympic pool, treatment and consultation rooms, saunas, a steam room, and a snow shower, the Shape Club welcomes hotel guests looking for support to achieve their weight loss goals. Each guest is guided and motivated by a team of professionals who apply the advice of Lily of the Valley's consultant nutritionist doctor, Dr Jacques Fricker.
Perched on the third floor of a striking highrise, this retreat-within-a-retreat delivers stunning views of Jing’An Park, a green sweep full of peach and apple trees. Choose from a wide array of jet lag-busting cures here (many are tea-themed), such as an award-winning traditional Chinese bodywork treatment, a blissful Tranquility Pro-Sleep remedy, or an acupoint leg massage, fueled by botanical oils, guaranteed to release any flight-induced tension. Then seal the deal at the onsite steam room and sauna before retiring to your room, a handsome lair with Han Dynasty statues, incense burners, and silk screens.
A healing hammam, sound therapy sessions and a mud bath await at this grand oasis – arguably, the most luxurious in the City of Gold. The Stephen Falcke-designed space favors restorative elements like copper, linen and water, which are used in copious amounts throughout the soothing two-floor expanse. Each of the 11 treatment rooms here features a locally-made Himalayan salt and recycled glass chandelier, known for boosting energy levels. Though the star attraction here is a glass-encased couples’ suite – the perfect setting to indulge.
Lochs and rolling hills fuel the ESPA treatments at this award-winning Highlands haven (quite literally: the spa now churns out scrubs, balms and oils, rich with herbs and plants from the surrounding countryside). Fresh from a thoughtful redesign, which includes a madeover relaxation space, all crackling fireplaces and cushy velvet sofas, and a clutch of medically-inspired facials, crafted by skincare guru, Dr. Barbara Sturm, this rural retreat, complete with heated limestone floors, holds its own on an estate synonymous with far sportier pursuits, like golf, horse riding, and falconry.
A laid-back but luxurious Uco Valley farmstay makes the backdrop to this underground refuge. Known for its hot stone massages and extensive vinotherapy treatments, the sunken spa also shares soil with the surrounding vineyards, part of Argentina’s premier wine growing region. Take a dip in the temperature-controlled pool, or workout in the adjoining gym, and you’ll find the ellipticals and state-of-the-art treadmills boast views of the Andean peaks. The rugged surroundings (1,500 acres, to be precise) also offer countless private outdoor spaces for yoga and meditation.
Dressed in natural stones and Atlantic Ocean blues, this 17,250-square foot sanctuary, furnished with a seashell-inspired staircase, evokes the Algarve’s enchanting caves. The spread of remedies here was created in collaboration with French spa sensation, Sisley, known for its penchant for plant extracts and essential oils. Hot sand massages, medical-grade mani-pedis, anti-aging facials, and sound-and-vibration body treatments unfold in each of the 14 elegant therapy rooms, while a sun-drenched fitness studio offers views of the subtropical pavilion, a site for private, group and aerial yoga classes.