Vegas Spas {Part I}

[trip style = spa + weekend getaway]

Zen, quiet and rejuvenating are not words I'd typically associate with Las Vegas. The glitter gulch is a 24/7 destination devoid of downtime---or so I thought...

This past weekend I was invited into a trip style = spa world of lavender-infused pillows, Moroccan lanterns, heated stones, Turkish towels, eucalyptus inhalation rooms, tropical rain showers and willing hands on a spa marathon through Vegas. After six treatments in three days, it occurred to me that the world's entertainment capital doesn't do anything half way, e-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g---including the 45 destination spas that dot the Strip---is full throttle. My post-treatment buttery and glowing skin concurs.

Of the nine spas I visited, here is part I of the Trip Styler-approved standouts! Stay tuned for part II next week.

Vdara Spa At 18,000sf, the Vdara's spa is the most boutique of the bunch, as well as the first spa in Las Vegas to become a member of the Green Spa Network. High-gloss white marble countertops adorned with a bevy of après-treatment beauty fixes define the dressing room and lead into a white-washed steam, sauna and whirlpool retreat with two heated and contoured chaises basking under the glow of 50+ faux flickering candles. And this is just the ladies waiting area! Once called for your treatment, you are led through rounded hallways, flanked with cherry-hued wood with an embedded tropical pearl motif, into one of 11 treatment rooms. Who: Singles, couples or small groups who are looking for high design and intimacy.

Cosmopolitan's Sahra Spa & Hammam At once earthy and elegant, the Sahra Spa & Hammam mimics the tones and textures of the desert landscape thanks to 420 tons of sandstone quarried from the local foothills. And since it's Vegas, there's a glimmer of glam with a few subdued crystal fixtures. Walking in, I breathe a sigh of relief. It's like I'm on a {posh} hike through Red Rock Canyon venturing toward a quiet pool of trickling water. Once inside, detoxify on a massive, heated stone slab {called motherstone} with a purifying Turkish Hammam treatment. Water is poured over the body in preparation for a soapy cleansing, followed by the crescendo: a percussion massage. After your treatment, the monsoon cave, vitality pool and micromist steam room round out your trip to Las Vegas' newest oasis of calm. Who: Men frequent this space as much as women because of the androgynous, non-girlie design and Turkish influence. Ladies, go here if you want to meet groups of men...

Aria Spa At Aria's 80,000sf spa, the elements---salt, stone, earth, fire and water---harmonize to create balance in the Japanese-imagined space. I start in the Shio Salt Room where I luxuriate in a lounger that vibrates to pan flute music. Breathing in an out in an almost middle-earth state, I get a glimpse at how the illuminated salt bricks aid respiration and reveal radiant skin. Next door in the dimly lit Ganbanyoku Stone Bed Room, heated black mineral stone slabs emanate infrared rays to soothe muscles, eliminate toxins, improve circulation and increase the metabolism---naturally, I want to stay here all day, but I limit myself to 20-minute stints. Post-massage, I dip into Vegas' first co-ed infinity spa pool and celebrate my wellness whirlwind biting into a green apple and drinking a glass of lemon-infused water. Who: With 62 treatment rooms, this one-size-fits-all mega spa feels approachable and escapist.

{Trip Styler Tip :: Most spas in Vegas allow all-day in and out access until close, so take advantage of the environment and stay awhile or come back later for round two.}

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[photos courtesy of Vdara, Cosmopolitan and Aria, experienced as a guest of the LVCVA]