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Debbie Strong, Spa Editor

December 24, 2007 By: Travel Agent Central Contributor Travel Agent

I loved attending the opening of the Westin's first Heavenly Spa in the continental U.S. For a spa escape that incorporates picturesque scenery and plenty of golfing, send your clients to Hilton Head Island, SC--the location of Westin's first Heavenly Spa in the continental U.S.Start the heavenly journey by flying your VIPs into the Hilton Head Island Airport, a mere five minute trip from the property and easily accessible for private planes or helicopter transfers. The resort is also 45 minutes from Georgia's Savannah International Airport, which is served by a variety of major carriers. The resort's guest experience manager, Nicola Dick, can arrange for private limo transfers to and from the hotel; we found that the lush Southern scenery makes the ride fly by.

The Westin Hilton Head Island Resort and Spa is set within the stunning grounds of Port Royal Plantation on Hilton Head Island's northeastern tip. Reminiscent of classic late-19th-century seaside resorts, The Westin Hilton Head Island Resort & Spa is a AAA four-diamond oceanfront property full of Southern charm. There are more than 500 guest accommodations, all with private balconies and 10-layer "Westin's Heavenly Bed" mattresses, which we'd heard about beforehand and were eager to experience.

I was among the first guests at the new 8,000-square-foot Heavenly Spa, which held a soft opening in April. Its intimate size makes for a comfortable, cozy feeling almost immediately after walking through the elegant glass doors. The space contains nine tranquil treatment rooms for massages and facials, a full-service salon and men's and ladies' lounges, each with its own steam room, sauna and whirlpool.

The scent of white tea aromatherapy greets all guests upon their arrival at the spa. While checking in, guests are served a signature blueberry and white tea beverage, and they are given a warm herbal pack to relax their shoulders before their treatments. Other unique touches include a rushing "water wall" in the lobby, calming waterfall sounds throughout the facility, and the "burden baskets" at the door to each treatment room, where guests are welcome to symbolically leave their troubles before starting their spa session. Signature holistic spa services include the Indigo wrap, Indigo facial, and Indigo massage--all of which use the indigo plant, one of Hilton Head Island's main crops.

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