Spa Tips: Think and Plan Before you Go – by Traci Drury

When we vacation I always look forward to having a spa treatment whether we travel to a particular destination or we go on a cruise.  Here are some tips on getting the most from your spa experience whether you are traveling or want to do something close to home.

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1.  Put some thought into what treatment you would like, if there is a particular skincare brand in which you’re interested, or if you’re willing to travel across town for someplace close to home.  Since I already use good skincare products I usually have a body treatment like a salt scrub.  Think of a second choice in case you call and your first preference is not an option.
2.  Think about how much you can afford or are willing to spend for services and potential purchases.
3.  Do a little research.
A.  Going on a cruise?  A popular brand used with cruise lines is Elemis.  Look on the cruise line’s website and look at the ship on which you’ll be sailing – there’s probably a list of services for the salon and spa as well as the brands they use and pricing.  The ship will announce specials each day that are not listed on their service menu (don’t bother asking what the special will be on a particular day – they will say to their knowledge the only special is what’s currently offered for that day).
B.  If you’re looking for a particular brand go to the brand’s website.  There’s usually an option on the website to find a business that sells their products and provides services (facials, etc.).
C. Many hotels have spas (not just the chains such as Marriott) and, again, look at their website for a service menu either before you travel or when you first arrive.
4.  Ask friends if they have any recommendations.  You probably have a friend who loves to hit up a spa, but don’t forget about those friends who only go when they receive a gift card.  And don’t forget social media!  Your friends in other locations may have recommendations.
5.  The earlier you book your appointment the more likely you are to get the day and time you want.
6.  If you have a preference on gender, tell the person who books the appointment.  Don’t trust them to ask if you have a
7.  If you are booking a body treatment (like a body scrub or wrap) ask if there is a shower or tub in the room where you can rinse off.  Hot wet towels don’t remove the product as good as water.  No tub or shower?  I book a different treatment.
8.  Find out what other accommodations they offer – pool, hot tub, sauna, etc.  Then show up early or hang out after so you can enjoy the facilities and have a full experience instead of just a treatment.  Most spas have water infused with lemon, cucumber, oranges,  etc.

Did you know?……is there a Neiman Marcus or Nordstrom near you?  Some Neiman Marcus locations have an esthetician who performs facials in a private spa room…complimentary (they may not have have a steamer).  If you already love a particular skincare brand that you purchase at a department store you might be able to purchase it at Neiman Marcus (Estee Lauder, Lancome,  etc.).  Some locations will tell you there is no purchase required while some will require a 2-3 item purchase.  So before you need to replenish a couple of items speak with the Product Specialist for the brand at the store for more information.  This is a great way to make a contact when GWP or special events are coming up.  Also…there are some Nordstrom locations who have an esthetician and I believe they charge for facials and waxing, but they can use the brand that you already use (this is good for someone with ultra sensitive skin).

Do you have any suggestions that I didn’t cover?  I’d love to hear your thoughts and feedback.

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