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After being cooped up at home for months during the COVID-19 pandemic, the idea of a spa vacation is especially enticing. As bliss-seeking travelers start venturing out again, the twin destinations of Puerto Vallarta and Riviera Nayarit are answering the demand by offering a variety of interesting new spa experiences, as well as treatments based on age-old traditions.
Note: Although all hotels and spas in the Mexican states of Nayarit and Jalisco follow state and national guidelines regarding hygiene and safety during the pandemic, some spa facilities may still not be open due to compliance with corporate protocols dictated by the hotel chains to which they belong. Travelers and advisors looking to book should check the status of operations with individual properties.
Rejuvenation in Riviera Nayarit Conrad Punta de Mita, which opened in September, is home to one of the newest upscale spas in Riviera Nayarit. The attractive indoor facility is complemented by an expansive outdoor garden that’s graced with pools and handmade wooden treatment pavilions that resemble giant nests.
Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit, meanwhile, introduced a new treatment venue called the Huichol Cabin, which incorporates design elements inspired by the local Huichol Indian traditions. Treatments include Copal Harmonization, which aims to spark energy through a ritual that involves burning copal (tree resin) and organic tobacco. The hotel also recently introduced a three-night Micro-Cation Menu, which includes wellness activities such as an aromatherapy workshop, massage services and antigravity yoga.
In keeping with current social distancing trends, Four Seasons Resort Punta Mita has launched a series of touchless treatments at its Apuane Spa. The Sound Healing treatment, for example, uses the vibrations of Tibetan bowls to balance energy and restore harmony, while reiki and mediation sessions are designed to guide guests to new levels of tranquility.
Meanwhile, outdoor facilities are a big draw at the Away Spa at W Punta de Mita. The 4,500-square-foot facility features a lush outdoor relaxation area with multiple hot and cold plunge pools, and even the expansive couples’ massage rooms have lovely views of the outdoor scenery. Locally sourced treatments include agave and tequila facials, as well as massages that make use of indigenous Huichol healing techniques.
Pure Pleasure in Puerto Vallarta Among Puerto Vallarta’s largest spa facilities is the 22,000-square-foot Ohtli Spa at Marriott Puerto Vallarta Resort & Spa Hotel. Huichol traditions play a role in treatments at this venue as well, during sessions such as the Fire Opal Balancing Therapy stone treatment, which utilizes the Mexican fire opal to stimulate circulation.
Promoting relaxation on a grand scale is the Secrets Spa by Pevonia, located at Secrets Vallarta Bay Puerto Vallarta. The 14,000-squarefoot facility offers flavorful treatments that include body wraps with chocolate, green coffee and mango/passion fruit yogurt. Couples might want to consider the Relaxing Moon & Stars Massage, which features a Swedish massage on the beach with sparkling wine and passion fruit.
The soothing qualities of water are also maximized at The View Spa, located at the Grand Miramar All Luxury Suites & Residences. Its Flotation Therapy program, which takes place in a water chamber infused with Epsom salt, is reported to be so relaxing that it offers the same benefits as four to six hours of sleep, thanks to the “no gravity” sensation that fosters deep relaxation.
Couples, meanwhile, can indulge in an Ancestral Escape, a treatment for two that includes energy cleansing inspired by indigenous traditions, as well as a Jacuzzi detox bath, followed by massages that can be personalized to address individual preferences.