CAMEL VALLEY RANCH’S infinity pool cabanas allow the bride and groom to indulge in some private poolside lounging.
Brides-to-be and their wedding parties can seek some pre-ceremony refuge with a private spa takeover. From bachelorette parties to groups seeking some post-nuptial R&R, spas across the board are rolling out the red-carpet treatment to help them unwind, including customizable services served up alongside bottles of bubbly and savory bites.
Carmel Valley Ranch in the Monterey region of California sports Spa Aiyana, which uses botanical infusions and oils made with wild lavender herbs and honey from its on-site apiary populated by more than125,000 Italian honey bees.
Wedding parties are privy to an extensive range of packages in the 11-room spa. Our favorite is the “(Bee)autiful Bachelorette,” which offers up the Aiyana VIP spa suite for a half day of treatments and includes a customized facial or massage. We suggest the Lavender Garden Swedish massage, where pressure is tailored for the individual. Tip: Ask for Jamie Rosaro, a client favorite. Note that the minimum age for facials is 16 years old; those 18 and older can receive massages.
Bachelorettes can make sure they’re perfectly sun kissed for the big day with Natural Body Bronzer Spray Tan. Post pampering, ladies can retreat to the cabanas for some bubbly and poolside bites like the East Coast Muffaletta with fennel salami and truffle fries or the Molinari family charcuterie plate.
Gents can opt for a trip to the Grooming Bar where they’ll be treated to bloody marys to start off their beauty buzz, followed by a 60-minute hot shave. Nice Touch: The extra 30-minute “Arnica” deep-tissue massage blends sport stretches and targeted muscle work to restore vitality for the big wedding day.
The bride and groom can indulge in a side-by-side couples massage and some private poolside cabana lounging before retreating to the couples suite, complete with fireplace, shower and treetop patio.
Top Tip: For some extra romance, try out the new “Starlight Spa Service,” where guests can enjoy treatments on a private, heated wooden deck fronted by ancient oak trees right beneath the stars.
Luxury travel advisors should reach out to Spa Director Franziska Haala (fhaala(@carmelvalleyranch.com; 831-626-2573) to make special arrangements. If you’re planning on hosting your wedding here, Rachel Schanding ([email protected]; 831-620-6408) is our go-to person and can assist with the details ahead of time.
For honeymooners, the resort recommends private “Treetop Suites,” which have great views of Carmel Valley (No. 292 gets the most raves). The wedding party can choose from the very new 800-square-foot one-bedroom Estate Suite, which has a kitchenette. The Oak Grove Suite is 1,200 square feet in size and has a bedroom, living room and dining room.
Head Concierge Gabrielle Wagemakers ([email protected]; 831-620-6427) can keep everyone in the wedding party busy, from horseback riding, garden tours, hilltop yoga and even a customized bee-keeping experience.
If you’re flying in via private jet, the Monterey Regional Airport is just 20 minutes away; charter helicopters can land at Moss Landing, 26 minutes away.
Gathering your bridal party on the “other” coast? In Manhattan, the Guerlain Spa at The Towers of the Waldorf Astoria New York has 14,000 square feet of pampering space. Here, treatment suites are all fitted with private bathrooms with showers and personalized music selections.
Pictured: THE GUERLAIN SPA couples treatment room is designed for those seeking pampering time together.
Bachelorette parties can use the spa’s entire space for their festivities, which can start out with a menu of cocktails and small plates of hors d’oeuvres before each party member heads to their own private suite (there are 15 in all). Treatments run the scale from hydrotherapy massages to skin renewing facials. We hear there is great buzz around the upcoming Guerlain Orchidée Impériale’s “Cure” Treatment, which uses anti-aging “gold orchid” skincare products while facial muscles are stimulated and toned by Guerlain aestheticians.
Brides with pre-wedding jitters should check out the Impériale Relaxing Massage, which facilitates oxygenation and circulation to provide some calm.
Couples seeking pampering time together can takeover the private suite for side-by-side massages, a private steam room and champagne and truffle treats.
Bridal parties can also stage a takeover with a day filled with classic manicures and pedicures, followed by a full makeup and fragrance application for some final touches before the main event. Post pampering, there will be champagne treats and sweet petit fours. Here, it’s the bigger the better when it comes to wedding parties. The spa offers complimentary services for the bride when accompanied with at least six confirmed bridesmaids.
Couples can slip away on their honeymoon while treating their friends, family and even wedding planner to a post-party celebration. Guests can receive a massage or facial alongside some complimentary mimosas to recuperate from the soiree. Our top recovery pick: the stone soother heated treatment, where water heated basalt stones are combined with Swedish and deep-tissue massage for an intense tension relief.
Pictured: THE GUERLAIN SPA lobby has been crafted elegantly to have a serene vibe to it..
Nice Touch: Regardless of treatment choice, spa-goers are privy to complimentary luxury additions, such as shoeshines, garment steaming and makeup touch-ups.
There are many suites in the Towers of the Waldorf Astoria (John and Jackie Kennedy spent their wedding night in a Towers suite), but we hear that the Royal Suite, the former Park Avenue home of the Duke and Duchess of Windsor who moved in when the Duke relinquished his throne has a most romantic vibe. If you’re reserving a Towers suite for a client, be sure to ask for lavish add-ons, including floral arrangements, including water lilies floating in the tub.