Soothing Spas

The Moana Surfrider, A Westin Resort & Spa


The Sè Spa’s Studio Sutra

The Sè Spa’s most lavish suite, Studio Sutra


Spring is in the air, and the time is ripe for girls (and women, and ladies) to get out and down to the very serious business of relaxing and unwinding at spa resorts around the country.  And what group of girlfriends doesn’t love spas? Here are three properties that have some great packages for girlfriend getaways.


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San Diego

Who wouldn’t want to party like rock stars Katy Perry and Lady Gaga? Emerging as a new hot spot in the hottest part of California, the Sè San Diego Hotel has a state-of-the-art spa; the Suite & Tender steakhouse; the largest Penthouse on the West Coast; and a brand-new rooftop bar and lounge, aptly named, Siren.

The Sè Spa is best known for its Moroccan Rasul. The only one on the West Coast, this Moroccan steam bath is famous overseas and uses organic mud and aromatherapy steam to cleanse the body. The spa also has So Sound vibrational therapy in each treatment table, private steam showers in each of the nine treatment rooms, and an ultra microdermabrasion facial machine that vibrates at a frequency of 25,000 waves per second (25 times more than average).

The spa has a relaxation lounge as well as a VIP area that can be rented out by groups to further enhance their spa experience.

Another great option for a group of girls is the Studio Sutra room, the spa’s most lavish suite that features a Japanese infinity-edge soaking tub, flat-screen TV, lounge area and food and beverage service. It is the ideal place to be for a full day of relaxation. The spa also serves organic spa cocktails as well as food from the restaurant, Suite & Tender.

Sè’s rooftop pool deck bar and lounge, Siren, has unique entertainment options such as tango acts, acrobatics and mermaid geishas. They also specialize in one-of-a kind drink options, including molecular mixology and edible cocktails.

The hotel has a special girlfriend getaway package that includes guest room accommodation, $300 in credits at the Sè Spa, “spatinis” and appetizers in the spa after treatments, and two $50 Horton Plaza/Nordstrom gift cards for shopping.

Nice deal: Guests who book three or more rooms receive a complimentary cabana in Siren Pool Lounge that evening. (And just in case the ladies meet someone interesting at the pool—ahem—the cabana seats six.) The package rate starts at $599.

For special requests, agents should contact National Sales Manager Jacque Pratt (619-515-3023, [email protected]).

Las Vegas

Why shouldn’t girls play in the playground of the world? Vegas is a favorite destination for women looking for a little self-indulgence, and The Four Seasons has a package that includes in-room cocktails and immediate access to world-class gaming.

As busy and exciting as Las Vegas is, there are plenty of ways for ladies to relax and unwind at the AAA Five Diamond property. The hotel is quieter than most others probably because it is a non-gaming property, but is adjacent to Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino. (In other words, a serene getaway that’s close to the action.)

A group of girls could, depending on their number, get a suite with adjoining rooms. For example, the one-bedroom 180-Degree Suites can be connected to with adjoining rooms to become two- or three-bedroom suites. (These suites are particularly in demand, we hear, with panoramic views of the Strip from every room.)


The Sè Spa’s

The Sè Spa’s relaxation lounge can be rented out by groups


The resort’s spa has some unique activities for unwinding and relaxing such as custom perfume-blending experiences, which involve an appointment with an experienced melanger to create a signature scent using all natural perfume oils.

Among the three-hour treatments at the spa ideal for girlfriend getaways are The Diva, which includes a Vitality of the Glaciers facial (using mineral-rich glacier water to cleanse the skin) and an 80-minute Therapist’s Design Massage ($460); and The Goddess, which includes a Golden Veil facial (incorporating gold and facial massage techniques) and a Shimmering Collection body treatment ($430).

We are told the Therapist’s Design Massage is also a popular treatment for de-stressing. The spa has a relaxation room for larger parties. To book for groups, contact Spa Director Nancy Mitchell (702-632-5032).

Ladies who can’t make it across the pond can enjoy Afternoon Tea at the Verandah restaurant, which pairs an extensive selection of fragrant teas with an array of sandwiches and tantalizing pastries prepared by Executive Chef Michael Goodman and Pastry Chef Jean-Luc Daul.

The pool is also a favorite among girlfriends looking to unwind, and the resort’s signature poolside services certainly make it easier to do so. Complimentary amenities such as chilled Evian mist, cold towels, ice water, cucumber slices for the eyes and sliced fruit are handed out by pool attendants regularly.

This summer, the pool will debut a fresh look and feel, with all-new pool furniture, a revamped bar menu, self-service water and sunscreen stations and an espresso machine offering an array of iced coffee drinks.

For special requests, travel agents can contact Director of Sales Shelly Gray (702-632-5221, [email protected]).

Big Island, Hawaii

Who knew a girlfriend getaway could also be philanthropic? On the Big Island of Hawaii, the Hilton Waikoloa Village has a Girlfriends Give Back in Paradise package, starting at $275 per room, per night, based on double occupancy. With this package, for every night spent at the hotel, Hilton Waikoloa Village will donate $10 to the Hawaii Affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure.

The vast resort is on the beautiful Kona side of the island, with a dolphin lagoon onsite (try swimming with them for an exhilarating bonding experience!) and seemingly endless beaches for swimming, sunbathing, snorkeling…whatever girls need to relax in Hawaiian comfort.

As part of the package, a group could get one room with two double beds, or a king bed with a pullout sofa. (The resort can upgrade the room to a dolphin-view in the Lagoon Tower or deluxe ocean view in the Ocean Tower for an additional charge.) Larger groups can get connecting rooms, or suite options include the one- or two-bedroom Bay Suite or Palace Suite—which have all been recently renovated.

The Kohala Spa at the Hilton Waikoloa Village has both indoor and outdoor areas for women to relax and unwind, away from the menfolk. After sitting outside around the steaming Jacuzzi, they can retire to the steam room with eucalyptus-scented steam before falling prey to the temptation of lomi lomi massages, Swedish massages or reflexology treatments. Group treatments include manicure/pedicures, seaside cabana massages, yoga and the Buddha Point outdoor walk.

The getaway package includes the Legends of the Pacific Luau (with front-row Preferred Ali’i seating—perfect views!) or an Ocean Sports Champagne Sunset Sail. Ladies are treated to a daily Lava Flow cocktail (it’s somewhat like a frozen pina colada) or choice of daily beverage. They’ll also get a Queens’ Marketplace shopping bag and chocolates.

To book the Girlfriends Give Back experience at Hilton Waikoloa Village, visit the website.

Agent Advice

We asked Doni Belau, founder of Girls Guide to Paris, about girlfriend getaways in recent years. “Women traveling together (without their significant other) is a travel niche that is booming,” she says, adding that it is estimated women will spend $125 billion on travel next year. “From hen or bachelorette parties to big bash 50th-birthday parties, women will often travel around some kind of theme. You are also seeing formal or informal travel groups, women who will travel each year to someplace special. According to the research, women want something more out of their vacations such as educational opportunities (i.e., cooking classes) or some kind of adventure whether it [is] soft or extreme (i.e., rafting or touring Paris on a Vespa).”

Citing the song “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun,” she adds, “Women traveling together want to break out of their mold a bit for the time that they are away. [They want to] experience new things, people and places and get out of their mommy, family or work roles. They also might want to spend a little less on their girls’ vacation than they’d spend with their husband or family, so sharing a room at a hotel (i.e., twin beds please!) might be a smart choice.” There are many types of girlfriend getaways, she adds—and some of them might not even be friends: “There are also mom and daughter groups of all ages and sisters who love to travel together, college-age girls, grandma and child, and groups of women who don’t know each other [but] who are brought together on an organized tour of some kind. Plus, women are increasingly looking for special, secret, one-of-a-kind finds—boutique hotels, for example, that they haven’t read about everywhere, that make them feel smart and ‘in the know.’”


Four Seasons Las Vegas spa
One of the three-hour treatments at the Four Seasons Las Vegas spa includes an 80-minute therapist’s design massage