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Healing Waters: 10 Incredible Spa Hotels

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Today’s hotel spas offer therapies based on indigenous traditions and ingredients, giving guests insights into how people stay healthy around the world. Of course, wellness goes beyond massages and facials. Resorts also help travelers make cultural connections through such activities as dance and yoga. From a hammam hotel to a property inspired by Indian houseboats, these retreats were designed to enrich body and soul.
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Carretera Federal 307, 77710 Playa del Carmen, Q.R., Mexico
Secluded and service-oriented are the adjectives that best describe Rosewood Mayakoba, a resort in Playa del Carmen that opened in 2008. At 1,600 acres, the resort is expansive, offering plenty of room for guests to feel that they have their own...
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Km5 Route d'Amizmiz، Marrakesh 40160, Morocco
It took four years to build this hotel at the base of the Atlas Mountains. French designer Jacques Garcia included black-and-white zellij tile work and other intricate Moorish details. Each of the hotel’s five guest riads (typical Moroccan...
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72-100 Ka'upulehu Drive, Kailua-Kona, HI 96740, USA
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Before their scrub, wrap, or massage, spa guests visit the Apothecary, where they choose from a list of ingredients that includes black lava salt, hibiscus, honey, and macadamia nuts. From $795. (808) 325-8000. This appeared in the...
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Plazoleta Nazarenas 223, Cusco 08000, Peru
Orient-Express has turned an 18th-century convent into a hotel, preserving the courtyards and frescoes. Native experts designed bath products that use coca leaves and white sage from Lake Titicaca. From $595. 51/(0) 16-108-300. This appeared in...
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6 Xiaodonghai Rd, Jiyang Qu, Sanya Shi, Hainan Sheng, China, 572000
For centuries, many Chinese women maintained youthful skin by applying crushed pearls to their faces. Here, the spa uses a facial powder made from locally harvested pearls. From $385. 86/(0) 898-8888-5088. This appeared in the January/February...
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Campos do Jordão - State of São Paulo, 12460-000, Brazil
A country retreat two hours north of São Paulo, Botanique is surrounded by 700 acres of forest and gardens. The 10,000-square-foot spa tucked into the hillside specializes in remedies inspired by local healing rituals. Try a mud therapy; the area’...
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No. /B, Kocatepe Mahallesi, Taksim Fırını Sk. No:25, 34435 Beyoğlu/İstanbul, Turkey
Zeynep Fadillioglu—the first woman in Turkey to design a mosque—is behind a new 270-room hotel in Istanbul’s cultural and commercial heart. An Ottoman tent canopies the Atrium lounge, and limited-edition sketches of Istanbul by the Turkish painter...
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Rue du Bouchet, 73440 Val Thorens, France
The 88 rooms at this new hotel in the French Alps have Nordic etched-wood panels and white fur throws, plus floor-to-ceiling mountain views. Altapura is within Europe’s highest-elevation ski resort. Guests can get tips from a ski coach every...
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Thachangad, Kerala, India
It’s easy to unplug at this 71-room resort set on 26 acres, steps from a river and the secluded Kappil Beach. Hotel villas were built from native materials to mimic kettuvallam, Kerala’s iconic houseboats. Many have private courtyards with plunge...
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Jalan Pantai Tengah, 07000 Langkawi, Kedah, Malaysia
In a fishing village near Cenang Beach, six traditional villas come with artisan-made furniture. Herbs for spa treatments are grown on-site, and therapists are experts in Malay massage. From $534. 60/(0) 3-6201-7275. This appeared in the...