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Soul-Centering at CityCenter

January 27, 2010 By: Lark Ellen Gould Travel Agent

Detoxing in Sin City need not be an oxymoronic punch line, especially if indulged in one of the three new CityCenter spas. But sybaritic scintillation would necessarily come in flash and circumstance in the forward leaning CityCenter that opened only last month in Las Vegas. As each hotel shouts an “aria” of its own in artful design, noteworthy guestroom technologies and innovative sustainability operations, each spa provides a complete environment of its own, unduplicated by any other spa facility at CityCenter or in Las Vegas. A step into the Spa at Mandarin Oriental, Spa Aria, or Spa Vdara is one step beyond in experience and philosophy.

Mandarin Oriental

True to the Mandarin Oriental chain, which specializes in high-end and personalized service, the Spa Mandarin Oriental keeps things tidy and intimate with a 27,000 square foot facility spanning two floors, all in dark woods, thin lines and crystalline Feng Shui. Consider this: out of 17 treatment rooms, seven are couples suites.

Treatment themes lean toward Asian twists, such as Thai Massage, Mahjong Balance and the Jade Enzyme Facial, with a pre-treatment Chinese foot massage for good measure. Treatments start at $100 for a 30-minute scrub

Post treatment or facility amenities can hold their own against the other spas in town with such treats as a hammam ($100 with treatment, $150 without), an ice fountain, a laconium and relaxation chairs line up in front of a floor to ceiling window over the action on the Strip. The real crowd pleaser here is the “experience shower” – a geek-loving chamber that offers sounds, lights and real rain experiences – from Arctic Mist to Tropical Rainshower – per flick of a touchsceen. 

For the wellness-inspired, yoga classes are offered in the evening for $35. Or guests can have their very own Swami. A Vegas local who has spent most of his life studying Oriental languages and culture, teaches wisdom on demand for $150 per session, per guest, in a wonderfully windowed studio overlooking CityCenter and Las Vegas. A sunrise session will start with a candlelit room and chi-waking exercises that can be customized for interest and skills. Meditations, discussions, the session can work wonders for body and spirit, and bring valuable insight to guests, channeled through a man of many loves. 

Call (888) 881-9530 or  visit

Spa Vdara

Spa Vdara goes for the green. The 18,000-square-foot, two-level spa, salon and fitness center themes itself from the calming power of water and remains the first and only Green Spa  (certified by the Green Spa Network) in Las Vegas. That means only organic or wild-crafted products, no paraben anywhere, only natural and cruelty free product (even nail polish is all natural and vegan). In addition the spa recycles and uses recycled paper for spa materials.

Just because you are nice to the environment does not mean you can’t be a little naughty. The Champagne Bar in the spa lobby is open for business all day, seven days.

Treatments at Spa Vdara keep an eye on the holistic twist and use natural organic products, such as Naturopathica, Dr. Obagi’s ZO Skin Health, Akhassa, Chocolate Sun and Red Flower. The salon uses Aveda products and elixirs from Moroccanoil. Massages start at $140 for 60 minutes.

Guests at Vdara have the use of the spa included in their resort fee and may avail themselves of the spa’s extras, such as the water relaxation room. Cabana massages can be had be the pool for an added $35. Personal training sessions and in-depth nutrition consultation can be arranged at the fitness center for an added fee.  Call (866) 391-7111 or visit

Spa Aria

Think waters, woods and walls of rock, be it salt, marble or sand. Spa Aria spreads a notable 80,000 square feet through 62 treatment rooms (and a treatment menu to match) that include four Ashiatsu rooms, three couple’s massage rooms, two vichy rooms, one Thai massage room, one hydrotherapy room, one spray tanning room and two tanning bed rooms. A massive fitness center and movement studio complements the pampering with classes in cardio, abs, pilates, meditation, kettlebells … whatever the doctor orders … for an added $35-$45.

Entrance to the spa without a scheduled treatment runs $30 but offers plenty purpose in the transaction. The spa features a

Shio Salt Room as well as Japanese Ganbanyoku Stone Beds, highlights found nowhere else in the city, if not the country. The salt room is particularly detoxifying and relaxing. Walls of salt crystals filter the light and leech menacing impurities from the body. Zero-gravity loungers offer private audio phones for listening to the meditation music with a vibration tuner that intensifies the reverberation of that music through the chair.

Across the hall a room of Ganbanyoku stone beds – literally hot slabs of granite marble – invite guests to relax upon them in another detoxifying process taken from ancient Far East traditions.

Guests can end the spa journey in a hot steam or sauna, or put the bathing suit on and step into the co-ed balcony Jacuzzi with an infinity-edge pool that overlooks Aria’s stunning poolscape.

Do not plan on a relax-and-rush day here. Best advice is to make the time and take the time.

Call (877) 312-2742 or visit [email protected].

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