10 Southwestern Spa Treatments Worth Traveling For (2023)

From rugged, snow-capped mountains to scarlet desert canyons, the natural habitat of the American Southwest is hard to miss. In New Mexico and Arizona in particular, residents and travelers continue the centuries-old Native American tradition of connecting with the mainland through year-round outdoor activities—hiking, skiing, or just being in nature.

But wellness can also be found in the region's spa spaces, which use the entire natural environment to offer innovative treatments. From astrology readings to massage oils made with native ingredients to hydrotherapy in a steaming natural hot spring, spas in Arizona and New Mexico are getting creative to provide more than physical relaxation, but also mental and emotional healing. If you're looking for something more than your typical hotel spa massage, check out the treatments below, which are arguably some of the most unique in the country.

"Bio Radiant Facial Acupuncture" -Stream Dance SpaAlreadyBispel eyes


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What characterizes this treatment is the wide range of skin care techniques used - it includes cupping, microcurrents, radio frequency devices and the ancient gua sha massage technique. Based on the reflexology principle that the face is a microsystem, this 1.5-hour treatment works from the inside; designed to improve energy flow in the body's organs for a more radiant, healthy glow. Not only does this treatment aim to repair cells, increase collagen production and tighten the skin, but it also has an emotional element by targeting points on the face that are believed to boost mood.

Those seeking spiritual enlightenment can opt for "shamanic healing" instead, where a local shaman practitioner uses singing bowls and drums to clear energy blockages. Other unique spiritual treatments include astrology readings and breathing sessions.

"Urtemassage" -Pharma SpaAlreadyLos Poblano Historic Inn and Organic Farm

A large lavender field is the first sight upon arrival at this upscale Albuquerque resort. Guests are encouraged to experience the calming effect of the plant in Los Poblanos' signature lavender products, which are an integral part of their stay, e.g. Each season, different plants are harvested and steamed into a warm poultice, which is then kneaded rhythmically over the body. The heat and fragrance work together to encourage deep muscle relaxation.

"Cannabliss massage" klTen thousand waves

With outdoor onsen baths nestled between delicate wooden buildings, Ten Thousand Waves transports guests to the hot spring mountain resorts of Japan. The wellness center is such a soothing place that many locals drive 10 minutes from downtown Santa Fe to eat at a healthy Japanese restaurant and enjoy an onsen bath with a day pass. However, the massages at Ten Thousand Waves are not to be missed - the masseurs have over 650 hours of training, so you are in good hands here. While they offer traditional Japanese massage styles such as shiatsu, the "Cannabliss Massage" is particularly relaxing due to the inclusion of organic, broadMother Earthoil (you can take the rest home with you). Another advantage is that all massages include unlimited time inFantastic bath.

"Eye Rejuvenator" clOjo Spa Resorts

Taking inspiration from the Latin meaning of the word "spa" (which is derived from the Latin term "salus per aquas", meaning "health through water"), wellness can be found through water. The resort is popular with tourists and locals alike for its natural hot springs. After bathing, the 'Ojo Rejuvenator' utilizes already relaxed muscles to deliver a 50-minute massage that combines methods from around the world and includes Ojo's healing herbal water. The treatment concludes with a 25-minute exfoliating scrub made from native New Mexico blue corn and prickly pear.

"Watsu Therapy" ellerCastle Hot Springs

Another wellness resort that draws visitors to its natural hot springs is located in Arizona's Bradshaw Mountains. Inspired by the therapeutic power of mineral-rich spring water, the spa recently introduced new hydrotherapy treatments in its designated Watsu pool. "Watsu therapy" involves the therapist guiding you through a rhythmic dance in the water to release emotional and physical tension.

If you feel emotionally or spiritually unbalanced, "Balancing Water Energy" is another water-based treatment that works on the chakras and meridians to remove energy blockages. Back in the countryside, body treatments are developed with ingredients from a local farm such as calendula, lavender and lemongrass.

"Holy Staurolite" -Living SpaAlreadyholy mountain

The sleepy town of Taos in northern New Mexico is a wellness resort for those with a penchant for spiritual mysticism, and the El Monte Sagrado hotel fits the bill. Spa guests can relax under the willows and poplars as they stroll through the "Sacred Circle" facility, which they say has been revered for hundreds of years by local Native American tribes.

The spiritual atmosphere is best felt during this unique treatment that contains sacred stones from Taos. Sometimes referred to as "Fairy Crosses", staurolite crystals have long been used as a healing tool to release destructive tendencies and restore emotional stability. The energy of the crystals is transferred to the body's chakras using reflexology techniques. Guests receive a dry scrub followed by a detoxifying turquoise mud wrap and a hydrating face mask to regenerate the entire body.

"Chakra and Sound Massage" -Tierra Luna Spa and Sol GardenAlreadyArizona Biltmore, kurort Waldorf Astoria

This 100-minute treatment takes place in rooms named after astrological signs and involves the application of seven different essential oil blends to the area of ​​the body associated with each of the seven chakras. The purpose of each chakra and the natural ingredients of the respective oil are explained as the therapist moves through the body. Singing bowls and additional tuning forks further promote the release of stagnant energy and emotional blockages.

Other additions that add to the spa's mystical ambiance include a crystal gemstone eye mask or a 25-minute session in the "Halotherapy" room, built with giant Himalayan salt stones believed to cleanse and heal the body. Named after the earth below and the moon above, Tierra Luna Spa focuses on the healing power of the elements, such as water in a "desert oasis massage," where guests experience weightlessness as they are massaged on a bed of heated water pillows.

"Abhyanga" and "Shirodhara" -Tucson Ranch Canyon

When it comes to the latest in spa treatments, Canyon Ranch is a wellness resort worth checking out. The spa at its Tucson location recently added a range of treatments inspired by the principles of ancient Eastern Ayurvedic modality to its already diverse offerings. The 50-minute "Abhyanga" massage is performed by two therapists who synchronize their movements with warm sesame oil. Ayurvedic energy points on the face and feet are targeted to restore physical, mental and emotional balance. For the full experience, it is recommended to combine the massage with the "Shirodhara" treatment, where herbal oil is poured on the "third eye" between the eyebrows, while an Indian balancing bowl is used on the soles of the feet to balance the body's energies.

Himalayan salt stone massageFive Graces SpaAlreadyThe Inn of the Five Graces

Design lovers seeking well-being won't want to miss the Spa At The Five Graces, which is filled with intricate tile mosaics, ornate ceiling panels and majestic statues from around the world. What the spa lacks in its Santa Fe-inspired decor, it makes up for with the inclusion of local elements of natural and organic plants. One such treatment is the "Himalaya Salt Stone Massage", where purifying Himalayan salt stones are used to massage the body to release negative ions and neutralize toxins.

If you're a couple, you'll want to book the couple's room, which has a huge crystal statue and a colorfully tiled private bathroom with shower. Recommended additions include a warm oil scalp massage, mud detox and CBD products. With multiple treatment rooms with flowing marble fountains, the spa lives up to its name by engaging not only the sense of touch and sight, but also the sound.

"Marine Superfood Wrap" klWellness and Spa Club

The highlight of Civana Spa is their hydrotherapy circuit, which features alternating use of European-designed hot/cold pools and a therapeutic tepidarium swimming pool, a welcome respite from the surrounding desert. Those looking to hydrate will try the 'Marine Superfood Wrap', whose spa offers three different types made from botanicals for specific needs - such as calendula and chamomile for hydration and grapefruit for brightening. The treatment begins with a gentle peeling with a dry brush; followed by a warming wrap containing antioxidants and essential oils; and finished with a nourishing moisturizing application.

The unique additions draw inspiration from spiritual modalities such as the tuning fork, which clears the chakras, and singing bowl healing, which aims to synchronize the brain waves with the gentle sound waves from the bowl placed on the body. Whichever treatment you choose, you have access to the spa facilities, including the hydrotherapy pools.

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