Indian Springs Resort & Spa
1712 Lincoln Ave, Calistoga, CA 94515, USA
| +1 707-709-8139
Photo by Rachel Weill, AFAR Media
Indian Springs Resort & SpaThe best time to hit the mineral-fed pools at Indian Springs is just before closing, right around 9:30 p.m. Grab a float noodle, place it behind your neck, float on your back in the 102-degree water, and look up at the stars. No matter how cold the air might be, you will immediately relax. The Calistoga resort has been offering guests a similar experience for more than 150 years, though recent renovations have modernized the offerings and brought a new level of luxury and sophistication. The main attractions are the pools: one for all ages and another only for adults. Elsewhere on the property, an expansive spa offers massages and mud treatments; a restaurant—dubbed Sam’s Social Club—serves healthy California cuisine along with house-brewed beer. Accommodations vary widely, ranging from two-room cabins and expansive one-bedroom suites to multi-room bungalows and full-scale houses. Once you’ve had your fill of shuffleboard and bocce, walk into downtown Calistoga to shop at the local boutiques, or take the short trail to the top of the hill for a stellar view of the north end of the Napa Valley. Don’t miss: Perhaps the most spiritual part of the Indian Springs experience is the Wishing Tree in front of the spa. Write your wish on a card and tie it to the tree with the hundreds of others already there.
over 4 years ago
Take the Waters
Usually, the phrase “taking the waters” is reserved for European spa-goers, but, if Californians have adopted the phrase, it’s thanks to Indian Springs and its founder, Samuel Brannan. Brannan opened the resort in 1862 as a relatively no-frills spot that took advantage of sleepy Calistoga’s natural geothermal hot springs, attracting vacationing Bay Area residents to mud baths, mineral pools, and wellness treatments. Bungalows were added in the glamorous 1940s—it’s not hard to imagine characters out of Hitchcock films spending time here—but the resort continued to attract devotees primarily for its natural treatments and renowned, Olympic-size mineral pool until 2014, when it transformed into a contemporary luxury resort. The additions have been carefully done to maintain the vintage glamour, Mission architecture, and laid-back artsy atmosphere of the original spa retreat, so that both longtime fans and luxury-loving newcomers will feel right at home. The new cocktail bar and restaurant—terrace dining is, naturally, de rigueur, complete with string lights and a fire pit—make it a full-service resort (where even the minibar is included), so you don’t have to leave the picturesque grounds after a day spent between treatments and the pool. Although, with the best of Napa’s food and wine all around you, the choice is a tough one.
AFAR Local Expert
over 5 years ago
A Relaxing Retreat
This hotel is a tranquil and relaxing retreat. It's rooms are comfortable, it has a lovely pool, gardens, and thermal geysers that lead to mud baths and spas. I love the history of this place and that people have been drawn to this special land for generations.