Sunday, February 7, 2010

How Massage Therapy Saved My Two Week Spa Vacation

What would happen if on the third day of a two week fitness spa get-away you fall off the sidewalk on the way back to your room and badly sprain your ankle? Is your vacation doom before it has barely begun? Nope, not even close. First, go to the emergency room to make sure it's not broken. Then get the next available appointment with one of the on-site massage therapists. Massage in this case has benefits in several areas. I know because this actually happened to me. So please join me for a short tale of how my massage therapist saved my two week spa vacation or three benefits to massage therapy!

First let's start with stress. Within minutes of the accident beautiful colors were already tinting my ankle and foot. The thoughts running through my head during those first couple of hours, first in emergency and then through dinner, echoed the main question of my fellow spa-mates. "Are you going home?" I don't know about the rest of the population, but I go to the spa for stress relief as much as for exercise and in my book this rates up there as a stressful situation.

Massage TherapyThankfully I had a massage scheduled for after dinner that night. After several minutes into my massage the massage therapist worked her magic and I had no choice but to begin to relax under her artful hands. You see the injury had not just effected my ankle. My whole body had become more ridged in support of that injury. But the muscles, the lymphatic system, my blood pressure all became putty in her hands. And then she worked the pressure points that make you want to breathe deeper encouraging a more relaxing state of mind. My brain calmed down and "Are you going home?" stopped ringing in my head. I was in a state of calm.

Then, she got to the ankle. This is the physical healing part of massage. Ever so gently she worked around the injury. Encouraging those muscles to loosen and relax. Encouraging that ankle to not hold onto the blood but to move it through and around to bring faster healing to the injury. I got off her table that night walking out of her office much better than walking into it.

And I had a smile on my face. You see I had made a decision. I'm not going home. I'm not yet clear how it's going to work out but I'm staying! That was the emotional benefit of massage.

That was Wednesday. I had two more massage treatments with my massage therapist over the next three days. These treatments keep my muscles loose and in a better state for healing. It was hard not to favor my ankle because I refused to stop going to the exercise classes! Yes, I could have parked myself in the sunshine and gotten a GREAT tan but that tan wouldn't look so good in my clothes when I got back home if I stopped exercising. So I did what I could. I could still work my upper body and I could still work out in the pool. I attended each class and did what I could, even the kick boxing class. And boy did I ever punch that dummy bag. Kicking, well not so much.

The following Monday on the timed four mile, sidewalk/road, up a thousand foot walk I bettered my time from the week before by 10 minutes! By the end of the second week I had lost a pound more than from my two weeks stay the previous year! And even with the added stress of an injury clearly my spa vacation was saved by massage and my massage therapist! (Thank you Jane Ann!)

By Pamela Ann

About Author

Pamela Ann does administrative work at the Ann Arbor real estate buyer's agent company For more information on how massage therapy can help you reduce stress and heal faster, visit Ann Arbor Massage Therapy


Saturday, January 30, 2010

Top 5 Caribbean Spa Vacations

Vacations are fabulous. Yet many people express the need for a vacation from their vacation due to all the planning, hustle, bustle and activities. Imagine a vacation with no choice but to relax and revitalize as you experience complete pampering and indulgence. That's right! We're talking about a spa vacation many of which are all inclusive. So, focus on a warm tropical Caribbean.

Now, how do you decide the best place to go for your royal experience. Take a look at the Top 5 Spa vacations in the Caribbean to choose your personal spa getaway.

One and Only Ocean Club, Bahamas

The One and Only Ocean Club is located on Paradise Island's north shore in the Bahamas. The spa is an exclusive hideaway offering 106 luxurious accommodations with private balcony or patio, garden or ocean views, poolside concierge service, 18-hole golf course, 8 private spa treatment villas and more.

Rates at The One and Only Ocean Club, Bahamas vary between $515 to $3050 per night for $3,642 to $9684 for 5-Night spa packages. Learn more by visiting The One and Only Ocean Club, Bahamas website.

Spa VacationThe Oasis at The Body Holiday Le SPORT, St. Lucia

The Body Holiday LeSPORT located in St. Lucia features 154 rooms. This all inclusive spa covers drinks, meals at all resort restaurants, certain spa treatments, activities, gratuities and land and water sports.

Summer/Winter rates are from $250 to $360 per night. Visit The Body Holiday LeSPORT, St. Lucia website.

Parrot Cay Resort & Shambhala Retreat, Turks Caicos

The Parrot Cay Resort is a private island resort in the northeast area of Providenciales. This villa collection located beyond Rocky Point affords guests a private and secure beach. The "Shambhala" holistic spa offers body treatments, massages, yoga, and walks in unique, breathtaking settings along with Balinese, Thai, Tu'ina, Swedish, Aromatherapy and Indian head massages, water sports centre and a fully equipped gym.

Double Occupancy rates from $315 to $24,000 per night. Visit The Parrot Cay Resort & Shambhala Retreat, Turks Caicos website.

Malliouhana Resort & Spa, Anguilla

The Malliouhana Resort & Spa is a 52-room oceanfront spa found on the small Anguilla island. It offers therapeutic and specialty massages, hair and nail treatments, restaurant, Jacuzzi and pool suites with many views overlooking Turtle Cove beach.

Serenity is a only $520 to $521 per night based on double occupancy. Photos and details available at The Malliouhana Resort & Spa website..

Cuisinart Resort & Spa, Anguilla

The Cuisinart Resort & Spa presents 93 plush rooms and suites. It showcases Mediterranean style with whitewashed villas surrounded by lush foliage. The spa provides world-class restaurants, fitness center or spa, in-house bar, snorkeling, and the world's only resort hydroponic farm.

Rates are between $385 to $4,510 per night. More details available at The CuisinArt Resort & Spa, Anguilla website.

By TF Black

About Author

Born in Ohio as the youngest of nine, TF Black has a love for historical romance novels. Ms. Black enjoyed a career in Information Systems. She now spends her days as a writer on the venues of travel, wine and food, grants and entrepreneurial incubation. She also writes as a Fashion Columnist for


Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Spa Getaways in Coral Gables Florida

Coral Gables, one of Florida's most historic cities, is the perfect place for a relaxing spa vacation. Coral Gables is easily accessible to the Miami International Airport, Port of Miami, Coconut Grove and Miami's trendy South Beach area. Feast your eyes on lush tropical beauty and stunning Mediterranean architecture. Visit the prestigious art galleries and boutiques in town. Walk barefoot in the sand on the beach. The area has hotels with luxurious, full service spas and spa packages. Enjoy the tropical beauty of the area and get rejuvenating, relaxing and healthful spa treatments. Following are hotels with spa packages.

Biltmore Resort
1200 Anastasia Avenue
Coral Gables, FL

Luxury golf and spa resort is located in upscale Coral Gables, surrounded by 150 aces of lush topical gardens. The property features an eighteen hole golf course, swimming pool and spa. Restaurants on the property include: 1200 Courtyard Grill, Palmer d'Or, Cascade Poolside Bar & Grill, Biltmore Bar, 19th Hole Sports Bar & Grill and the Cellar Club Bar. The Spa provides a relaxing setting for pampering, rejuvenating spa services and treatments. A full service beauty salon is available. The luxurious Biltmore Spa offers an extensive menu of spa treatments. Services include massage therapy, facial treatments, hair removal, body treatments, body wraps, terme spa baths, lifestyle kurs, signature rituals, salon hair care, make-up, manicure and pedicure. Massage therapy treatments include Swedish, deep tissue, reflexology, shiatsu, Signature, Hawaiian Lomi Lomi, Thai, Hot Stone and Mother-to-be. Healthful, rejuvenating body treatments include: citrus scrub, bamboo lemongrass scrub, eucalyptus scrub, le vin chardonnay scrub, exotic scrub, anti-cellulite treatment, aroma back relief, relax aroma treatment, tonic body treatment, flow body treatment and detox body treatment. With the variety of spa services available at the Biltmore Spa, a spa vacation will cleanse, relax and revitalize you.

Biltmore Spa Splendor

Spa package includes Junior Suite Accommodations on the Spa Level, welcome spa amenity, $250 Biltmore Spa Credit, Room Tax and resort fee included. Minimum 2 night stay $700-$1000 (price is per person, per night, double occupancy).

Spa VacationHyatt Regency Coral Gables
50 Alhambra Plaza
Coral Gables, FL

Hyatt's amenities include an outdoor heated swimming pool and fitness center. AAA Four Diamond.

Spa Package

Spa package includes: deluxe accommodations, breakfast for two in the Tow Sisters Restaurant, transportation to the Camelot Salon and Spa, manicure an Pedicure, Choice of one hour facial or massage, lunch provided by Camelot Salon and Spa.

Ritz Carlton Coconut Grove, Miami
3300 Southwest Twenty Seventh Avenue
Coconut Grove, FL

Gloriously situated in lush tropical surroundings, the Ritz Carlton has panoramic views of Biscayne Bay, Coral Gables and the Miami skyline. The specious guest rooms have private balconies and floor to ceiling windows to to enjoy the scenic beauty. The property features manicured gardens, swimming pool nd a 6,00 square foot Boutique Spa and Fitness Center. Spa services include massage, nail care, skin care, and Signature treatments. Restaurants on the property, include: Bizcaya and The Lobby Lounge. The Ritz-Carlton has been designated the prestigious AAA Five Diamond.

Spa Girls in the Grove

Rejuvenate with your girlfriends with this pampering, rejuvenating spa package. The Spa Girls package includes: deluxe accommodations, one signature treatment at the Boutique Spa (Signature Massage or Signature Facial), $50 Spa boutique credit once per day. Rates start at $639.

Mayfair Hotel & Spa
3000 Florida Avenue
Coconut Grove, FL

Newly renovated hotel is centrally located in Coconut Grove, just minutes from downtown Miami, Coral Gables and South Beach. The Mayfair Hotel offers a soothing, sensual setting with luxury amenities and superior service. Ginger Grove restaurant offers pan-Asian cuisine in a stunning setting. Amenities include a resort-style rooftop deck with infinity pool, and 4500 square foot Jurlique Spa. Jurlique Spa offers revitalizing massages and rejuvenating facials. Jurlique's spa philosophy is focused on restoring energy and healing from within. Signature treatments combine Eastern and Western spa philosophies. the spa uses plant based products, grown organically, on their own herb farms in Australia. Spa treatments include: Fabulous Facials, Body Treatments, Hand and Foot Treatments, Water Therapy & Spa Ritual Packages. AAA Four Diamond.

Single and Sexy in the City

Package includes accommodations with private Japanese soaking tub on the balcony, 60 minute spa service of your choice, Jurlique gift. $329.

Information subject to change. Please call the hotels for further information and to make reservations.

By Christine Bude Nyholm

About Author

With nearly 3 million pages view Christine is one of the top 100 AC Contributors and Won Best of AC for Winter Travel Guides in 2008 and Best of Alternative Health in 2009. Christine's article Shop Around for Prescriptions was featured on CBS Early Morning News. She recently was invited to the Red Carpet Premiere for the Jackson: A Family Dynasty on A&E.


Saturday, January 9, 2010

Spa Getaways in Miami

An spa vacation on the beach front is the ultimate spa experience. The fine hotels of Miami offer luxurious spa treatments in state of the art spas that offer body treatments, massage services, facials, manicure, pedicures, salon services and much more. These Miami hotels have designed pampering spa packages that include accommodations and spa services.

The Ritz Carlton Key Biscayne
455 Grand Bay Drive
Key Biscayne, FL

Located on the ocean front on Key Biscayne. The Five Diamond hotel offers extensive amenities. Relax in one of the two heated oceanfront swimming pools and whirlpool. Dine at the country's only "Tequilier" at Cantina Beach, or at the signature restaurant - Cioppino. The Spa offers an soothing escape with ocean inspired renewal. The Ritz -Carlton Spa at Key Biscayne was named one of the best spas in North America by Conde Nast Traveler. The spa has 21 treatment rooms, a wellness center, a state of the art fitness cent and a full service salon. AAA Five Diamond Resort, Large Scale Hotel.

Suite Dreams Romance and Honeymoon Package

Package requires a three night minimum stay. Suite Dreams package includes accommodations, daily breakfast for two, dinner for two (once per stay), Two, one-hour Ritz -Carlton Signature massages, rose petal turn down upon arrival, Airport transportation a (one way) or valet parking, personal concierge service, 2 pm late checkout. Rates start at $1,259 per night.

Spa VacationHyatt Regency Coral Gables
50 Alhambra Plaza
Coral Gables, FL

Spa Package

Deluxe accommodations, breakfast for two in the Two sisters Restaurant, Transportation to the Camelot Salon and Spa, Manicure and Pedicure, Choice of 1 hour facial or massage, lunch provided by Camelot Salon and Spa.

Mandarin Oriental - Miami
500 Brickell Key Drive
Miami, FL

Prestigious location on Brickell Key. The Mandarin Oriental offers a sanctuary with waterfront views, opulent comfort, and a spectacular spa. Dine at one of their restaurants: Azul, Cafe Sambal, Lobby Lounge and M'-Bar. Relax in the world class spa and fitness center. AAA Four Diamond.

Spa Ancient Ayurvedic

Luxury accommodation in Spa Lifestyle Room or Dynasty Suite for three nights, American breakfast for two daily, Welcome Foot ritual, Facial Cleanse, Full Body Ex foliation, choice of treatments (Ayurvedic Holistic Body, Life Dance) Choice of Shirodhara or Marma Point Foot Massage, Choice of Aromatherapy Facial or Dosha Specific Wrap, one yogaclass per person, per stay. All spa treatments will be reserved for one day to receive optimum benefits. $2,549 to $4,259. Rates vary with room and season.

Fairmont Turnberry Isle Resort and Club
Miami, FL

Spa My Way Package

Indulgent package is designed to sooth, rejuvenate and relax you. The package includes luxurious over sized accommodations with balcony or terrace, sumptuous breakfast buffet in Veranda Restaurant daily, Choice of 60 minute spa treatments (Relaxation massage, Aromatherapy massage, deep cleansing facial, tropical garden facial, gentleman's barber face treatment, gentle body polish, aroma salt ex foliation, golden sun wrap), one hour of tennis court time daily, unlimited admission to the Willow Stream Spa, unlimited privileges to Ocean Club on the Atlantic Ocean, complimentary shuttle service. Rates for $609 to $889 per night per room.

Four Seasons Hotel Miami
1435 Brickell Avenue
Miami, FL

Ocean Front hotel with Five Diamond amenities. Recreational facilities include: fitness facilities, swimming pools and spa services. 3 three separate swimming pools.

Splash Spa is a 50,000 square food facility with a total of 10 treatment rooms, including: dry redwood sauna, a Turkish steam room, and wet treatment area with Vichy shower. The extensive menu of spa services includes: signature treatments, massages, body treatments, facials and waxing. Acqua Restaurant ,on the premises, serves global cuisine with Asian and Latin influences. The restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. AAA Five Diamond Large Scale Resort.

By Christine Bude Nyholm

About Author

With nearly 3 million pages view Christine is one of the top 100 AC Contributors and Won Best of AC for Winter Travel Guides in 2008 and Best of Alternative Health in 2009. Christine's article Shop Around for Prescriptions was featured on CBS Early Morning News. She recently was invited to the Red Carpet Premiere for the Jackson: A Family Dynasty on A&E.


Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Spa Vacation Spot in Israel - Mizpe Hayamim, Rosh Pina

When my husband and I need to relax and want something special, we've been known to indulge ourselves and take a couple of days to stay at this lovely spa hotel. Nestled in the hills of the upper Galilee, the name of this means "Viewpoint of the Seas", and on a clear day, you can see the Sea of Galilee to the east and the Mediterranean to the west. But the best view from this hotel is of the snow-capped Mount Hermon. Mizpe Hayamim is truly a pleasure to stay at, despite the slightly high price you'll pay (and some of the spa bits cost extra). Still, if you need to really kick back and relax, this is the place - so hang the cost, we're worth it!

While not a terribly large hotel, this caters more to the moneyed visitors with 50 regular rooms but 41 suites. The whole place is carefully taken care of, is always clean, and seems well kept up. Even the simple standard rooms are luxuriously fitted out and are designed for maximum comfort and relaxation. You'll find a big king-sized bed, and some are even four-posters, draped with curtains that make you feel like royalty. While room service isn't perfect, they have in their lobby/reading room/central area a huge selection of herbal teas and all sorts of interesting things to eat like seasonal fruits or natural, organic pastries available free of charge. The best bit - as soon as you get into your room, take off your outer clothing and don your provided slippers and robe and wander the facilities in that all day and night. Technically, you don't have to get dressed unless you want to leave the hotel. Yum!

More than anything else, this hotel gives you a feeling of old-world welcome and atmosphere combined with natural and organic pampering (I hope that's not an oxymoron). You'll feel like you're there for your all-round health - both physical and spiritual - and whenever I've been there I've felt like time went just a touch slower since everything was so relaxed. They're really best known for their in-house spa facilities as well as the sports you can get to and hikes you can take in the area.

Spa VacationIf people are worried about the "natural" and "organic" bit, they shouldn't be. Vegetarians will be thrilled and even vegans can have a plethora of what to eat for breakfast, with produce from their own organic farm and in-house bakery. For dinners, they now have two restaurants – one vegetarian and one meat. These both are considered to serve organic food, and considered to be at gourmet level, which means they are both priced in that range.

Of course, being as expensive as it is, it mostly attracts wealthier customers - but thankfully, sometimes we lowly peons can find special deals. Back in its earlier days, everyone was always warmly welcomed. Over the years, as they became more popular, there were experiences where staff seemed to treat us as if we weren't really worthy of being there. But on my last stay there - which was after their last renovation - while I still felt they were a touch on the snooty side, I did feel they made an effort to be as nice to the "bonus voucher" clients as they were to the full price ones. So if I can find a deal, this will still be the first place I'll choose to go.

As I already mentioned, the food here is organic and/or natural. Breakfasts are generous and beautifully arranged, with a cook on hand to make fresh pancakes or eggs to order. I've never seen more fancy cheeses and salads anywhere, and Israel is known for its large spreads at breakfast. With real linen tablecloths and nice heavy silverware, everything feels sumptuous and the dining area is bright and welcoming. Mind you, they aren't big on coffee and don't serve any alcohol (besides wine at the restaurants), but if you like teas and juices, this is for you!

This is located in one of the most beautiful areas in all of Israel. The hills of the Galilee are stunning and stretch out in front of you from under your feet. Even in the summer, they do everything they can to keep the grounds looking lush and green. Plus with Mount Hermon out your window, what else can you ask for?

Mind you, this isn't easy to get to and I don't think there are busses to here, so you'll probably need a car. Even so, until the large road 6 is finished and it finally gets this far north, it isn't going to be a short ride. Also, when you do get there, you have to go up a narrow winding road above the small town of Rosh Pina which is about 15 minutes south of Kiryat Shmona (which also isn't that large a town). Still, there's a small airport nearby and you could fly to that from anywhere in the country and either rent a car from there or take a taxi to the hotel.

Due to where this is located, there's not much on-site in the way of nightlife. During the day, their organic farm as well as their natural soap and candle-making workshop have on-site shops. Of course, why visit a spa if you don't try at least one of the many treatments (most cost extra) available, not to mention the fitness rooms, saunas, Jacuzzis and swimming pool? If you go down the hill and into town, you'll find about anything you want - and if you're ambitious, go as far north as Ma'alot and there you can even go ice-skating! And there's no end of places to see in the area from hikes to history. But this only means that this is very quiet and perfect for a relaxing stay. I'll give it five stars and recommend it for those who can afford it and have access to a car.

By Davida Chazan

About Author

I'm known on the internet as "The Chocolate Lady" and I am a published poet but also write for several on-line review sites. My favorite review categories are books and movies. Born in Evanston, IL I now live in Jerusalem, Israel.


Saturday, January 2, 2010

Spa Vacations in Sonoma, California

Sonoma, in Northern California, is located in the heart of one of the world's premier wine producing regions. Sonoma and Sonoma Valley offer a variety of attractions for visitors. Popular activities in Sonoma include wine tasting at the many wineries in the vicinity, shopping at the historic plaza, golf, healthful spa days, hiking and more. There are numerous dining choices with elegant restaurants, casual cuisine and ethnic food.

Historic Sonoma Plaza is an eight acre park that was designed 150 years ago by the Mexican Governor Mariano Vallejo. The park is filled with stately trees and walking paths. There are shops, restaurants and historical sites surrounding the plaza.

Sonoma, CA is in the heart of wine country, with regional wineries offering tours and tasting of their fine wines. Many vacations in Sonoma are centered around the enjoyment of wine tasting. Wineries in Sonoma include Ravenswood Winery, Castle Vineyards & Winery, Gloria Ferrer Caves and Vineyards, Kamen Estate Wines, Larson Family Winery, Sebastiani Vineyards and Sonoma-Enoteca,

Spa VacationThe combination of a wine tasting vacation and spa vacation sounds like a perfect, leisurely, relaxing vacation. There are fine hotels in Sonoma with excellent spa facilities that provide pampering treatments. Following are hotels with spas in Sonoma.

The Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn & Spa. Historic spa destination offers an elegant oasis with natural hot springs offers an idyllic location for a relaxing vacation getaway. The spa enjoys the thermal mineral waters that have graced the site for hundreds of years. According tot he Fairmont website, "Our spa pays homage to ancient Egyptian, Greek and Roman civilizations" Spend some time visiting the local wineries and sampling the fine wines, then return to the hotel for some relaxing spa treatments. Enjoy the fitness center, spa, salon, bath house and spa mineral pool. Fine dining on site at Sante Restaurant, The Big 3 and the Water Tower. 707-938-9000.

The Lodge at Sonoma Renaissance Resort & Spa. Luxury boutique property offers accommodations in cottages, suites and lodge rooms. Relax at the Raindance Spa, which offers skincare treatments, massage therapies, body treatments, manicures and pedicures and hydrotherapy baths. Dine at the Carneros Bistro, which has garnered several awards for excellence. AAA Four Diamond. 707-935-6600.

Macarthur Place Country Inn. Located in the Sonoma Valley Wine Country just four blocks from historic Sonoma Plaza is this luxurious 64 room hotel and spa. This property was originally a prestigious 300 acre vineyard and ranch. The 19th century estate has been transformed into a romantic, luxurious inn and spa. The inn has 9 suites that feature individual fireplaces, artwork, king beds, hydrotherapy tubs or rain showers, wet bars, DVD players and flat panel televisions. There are seven acres of gardens filled with original sculpture, fountains and benches. The heated pool and whirlpool are located in the beautiful garden setting. The Spa is an oasis of calm offering a unique array of treatments based of specific fruit, flower and herbal elements. massage treatments, body treatments and facials using a single essential oil note, such as rose, ylang-ylang, lavender, citrus or jasmine. Dine at Saddles Steakhouse which is consistently rated the "Best Steakhouse in the Wine Country: The wine list featuring as outstanding selection of Sonoma and Napa wines has earned the Wine Spectator's "Best of Award of Excellence". Guests of the inn received a complimentary breakfast every morning. AAA Four Diamond. 707-938-2929.

Best Western Sonoma. This hotel is located near the historic Sonoma Plaza. Hotel features amenities including complimentary breakfast, free Internet, fitness facilities, Spa Gratitude. Most of the vintage rooms feature a fireplace, private balcony or patio and garden courtyard view. 767-938-9200.

Information subject to change. Contact the hotels for further information and to make reservations.

By Christine Bude Nyholm

About Author

With nearly 3 million pages view Christine is one of the top 100 AC Contributors and Won Best of AC for Winter Travel Guides in 2008 and Best of Alternative Health in 2009. Christine's article Shop Around for Prescriptions was featured on CBS Early Morning News. She recently was invited to the Red Carpet Premiere for the Jackson: A Family Dynasty on A&E.


Monday, December 28, 2009

Spa Getaways on California's Mendocino Coast

The Mendocino Coast is located along the Pacific Ocean, north of San Francisco. The coastal area is known for spectacular scenery, distinctive winers and the relaxing ambiance. This coastal area is home to inns and B&B with luxurious accommodations and beautiful ocean views. Some of the ins offers relaxing and rejuvenated spa treatments as well.

A spa vacation on the Pacific Coast in the Northern California wine country may just be the ultimate indulgence. Guest can spend the day searching out interesting wineries and sample the fine wines form Napa, Sonoma and Mendocino wine regions. There is fantastic sightseeing in the area, with giant redwoods and ocean front drives. Enjoy spa treatments and massages before or after exploring wine country. Enjoy a gourmet meal in one of the fine local restaurants. Relax and enjoy the sunset while enjoying a glass of wine.

The Mendocino Wine Country begins about 90 miles north of San Francisco. Nearly 40 wineries are located in the three regions of Mendocino County, including Redwood Valley, Ukiah, Hopland and Anderson Valley. Ukiah and Hopland are in the Russian River area of the County.

Spa VacationFollowing are three highly rated inns with spas on the coastal area north of San Francisco. Bodega Bay is south of Mendocino, and is the closest to San Francisco. There inns offer relaxing, pampering getaway destinations on the coastal area of Northern California's Wine County.

Bodega Bay Spa and Lodge. Bodega Bay is located just one hour north of the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco. The lodge overbooks beautiful scenery, including the Pacific Ocean, Doran Beach State Park and the green bluffs of Bodega Head. Luxurious resort with 84 guest rooms and suites that feature spectacular ocean views and romantic fireplaces. The hotel's amenities include a complimentary wine hour, swimming pool, whirlpool, sauna, fitness center and full service spa. This restful setting is a wonderful place for a relaxing spa getaway. The Bodega Spa offers spa services including body treatments, massages and facials. The Duck Club Restaurant offers features California contemporary cuisine accompanied by relaxing ocean views. The menu changes seasonally to highlight the fresh local ingredients, seafood and the finest Sonoma County wines. AAA Four Diamond Resort. 888-875-3525.

Stevenswood Spa Resort, Little River. This resort is located on the Northern California Mendocino Coast, The Inn is nestled in a forest by the sea. Luxurious amenities include fine Egyptian cotton bed linens, European down comforters, Imported Hermes amenities, Venetian Glass bowl vanities, Tempurpedic premium sleep system, Italian Espresso Machines, Business center, Free wireless Internet, wood burning fireplaces, mineral whirlpools, ocean view decks, reading library, complimentary limo transportation and more. Indigo Spa promotes well being with state of the art pampering, relaxation and rejuvenation. The spa uses botanical and natural ingredients. The Spa menu offers massages, body treatments and facials. Dine at the Restaurant at Stevenswood, which has an intimate dining room with a fireplace. AAA Four Diamond. 800-421-2810.

Stanford Inn by the Sea and Spa. This Bed and Breakfast Inn offers views of the ocean and the Village of Mendocino. Guest rooms feature wood burning fireplaces. Inn amenities include swimming pool, hot tub, "organic" bread, pet-friendly rooms and grounds, working organic farm and organic dining. There are gentle creatures including llamas and horses on the property. Massage in the Forest Spa services feature massage, body work, facials, Ayurvedic treatments and yoga classes. Dine at Ravens Restaurant featuring regional organic produce. The wine list if comprised mainly of wines from certified organic vineyards or vineyards using sustainable farming practices. AAA Four Diamond. 888-331-8884.

Information subject to change. Contact the inns for further information and to make reservations.

By Christine Bude Nyholm

About Author

With nearly 3 million pages view Christine is one of the top 100 AC Contributors and Won Best of AC for Winter Travel Guides in 2008 and Best of Alternative Health in 2009. Christine's article Shop Around for Prescriptions was featured on CBS Early Morning News. She recently was invited to the Red Carpet Premiere for the Jackson: A Family Dynasty on A&E.