North Shore Pampering

Turtle Bay Resort gets a new 8,000-square-foot health, wellness and relaxation center

By: Marty Wentzel

Oahu’s North Shore now has its first full-service spa.

The Spa at Turtle Bay Resort, a 8,000-square-foot health, wellness and relaxation center, opened in September as part of a $40 million renovation of the oceanfront resort.

Shana Ominksy, the spa’s director, said its location just 40 feet from the ocean on one of Oahu’s most rural coastlines makes it an easy sell.

“The isolation of the North Shore makes you feel as if you are a world away from home,” she said. “I want to make this one of the best spas in Hawaii.”

Fittingly, the bungalow-style spa uses body products derived from the ocean, such as seaweed and sea salts.

For the spa’s signature skin line Ominksy chose the June Jacobs collection, available only in five-star spa properties such as Canyon Ranch, Ojai Valley Inn and Spa and New York City’s Peninsula Spa. “We have exclusivity with the product here in the islands,” she said.

Ominsky sees the new spa not as a day destination, but as “an extra essential to bring top-dollar clients to our resort, the type of guest who expects a spa with cutting-edge services,” she said.

Facilities include six oceanview treatment rooms, men’s and women’s locker rooms, steam rooms and a full-service salon. Before and after treatments, clients can relax at the spa’s bar for complimentary tropical juices, herbal teas and healthy snacks.

According to Ominsky, the spa has services called Island Rituals that are designed to help guests nurture their physical, mental and spiritual selves.

Its signature treatment, the Pipeline Sports Massage, combines sports and deep tissue massage ($115 for 50 minutes, $230 for 100 minutes).

The Sun-Kissed Hydrating Facial begins with a mask of limu (seaweed) and noni (mulberry), followed by a blend of tropical essences and macadamia oil and finished with a citrus blend ($125 for 50 minutes).

The resort plans to build 20 luxury guest rooms, scheduled to open this summer, that will allow direct access to the spa.

The spa is the newest addition to Turtle Bay’s renovation. The hotel, which first opened in 1972, had deteriorated significantly in recent years. Oak Tree Capital of Los Angeles purchased the 880-acre resort in 2000.

By November 2001 the exterior was restored, and all 401 rooms refurbished. The adjacent 42 oceanfront cottages have been positioned as Turtle Bay’s luxury product.

Other improvements include the restoration of nine holes, bringing the golf course to 36 holes. The clubhouse has been rebuilt and a new restaurant was opened last September. The swimming pool was improved and a new pool with waterslide also was constructed. The resort also has a tennis center, horseback riding and hiking trails.

It intends to expand its meeting facilities this spring.