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Spas of California by Laurel Cook

Spas of California

by Laurel Cook

383 pages
Updates Cook's California Spas & Urban Retreats adding new facilities.

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Category: Travel
About the Book
In SPAS OF CALIFORNIA Cook gives readers her personal, behind-the-scenes look at 65 facilities from ' 70s-style day spas (Kiva Retreat House in Santa Cruz) to beloved country retreats (Harbin Hot Springs in Middletown) to posh resorts (Marriott's Desert Springs Resort & Spa in Palm Desert) and, of course, the grandfather of them all, Rancho La Puerta in Tecate, Baja. Includes sections on the wall-to-wall spa towns of Calistoga and Desert Hot Springs as well as glossaries, informative tips on massage, her own "spa finder," and Web addresses.

Cook reminds readers that they need not plan an elaborate trip by air or ship to get away from it all: every spa listed is a drive away. Whether traveling single, with friend or significant other, or as a family, there is the right spa for every taste, mood, and budget. Cook insists that the spa experience-whether for an hour, a day, a week, or a month-will "stop the mind's endless chatter and iron out the wrinkles in your soul."

Laurel created her own spa finder to clue you in to the best places to go for:

  • a romantic getaway (start with Kenwood Inn & Spa in Sonoma County)
  • something unique (the enzyme bath at Osmosis-prettier, lighter than mud)
  • a no-holds-barred southern California wonderland (Marriott's in Palm Desert)
  • Native American healing grounds in real country (Stewart's Mineral Springs, Weed)
  • a family vacation (housekeeping cottage and swimming pool at Indian Springs, Calistoga)
  • the toughest fitness program in the state (The Ashram, Calabasas)
  • something hip and pricey (Two Bunch Palms in Desert Hot Springs)
  • Most bang for the buck for the week for everyone (Rancho La Puerta, Tecate)
  • Mellow nudity (Kiva Retreat House, Santa Cruz)
  • RV accommodations next to "the ultimate day spa" (Glen Ivy, Corona)
  • the most pools for wading, soaking, swimming (Desert Hot Springs Spa Hotel)
  • a gemutlich community, a communal kitchen, dorms/private rooms (Wilbur Hot Springs in Williams)
What most people appreciate about Laurel's guidebooks to spas, in addition to her glossaries, health information, and tips to newcomers, is her personal style -- she visited or spent time at every one and her descriptions make the information you're given on a Web site come alive.

In alphabetical order, here are the profiles you'll find in the book:

  • ALBANY SAUNA & HOT TUBS
  • THE ASHRAM
  • BERKELEY MASSAGE & SELF-HEALING CENTER
  • THE BERKELEY SAUNA
  • BODY, MIND and SPIRIT
  • CAL-A-VIE
  • CALISTOGA MASSAGE CENTER & DAY SPA
  • CALISTOGA RANCH
  • CALISTOGA SPA HOT SPRINGS
  • CALISTOGA VILLAGE INN & SPA
  • THE CARNEROS INN
  • CENTER FOR MASSAGE THERAPY
  • CHEEK t' CHEEK
  • THE CLAREMONT RESORT & SPA
  • DESERT HOT SPRINGS SPA HOTEL
  • ESPIRIT, Inc.
  • ESSENTIALS
  • FAIRMONT SONOMA MISSION INN & SPA
  • GLEN IVY HOT SPRINGS
  • THE GOLDEN DOOR
  • GOLDEN HAVEN HOT SPRINGS
  • HARBIN HOT SPRINGS
  • HARMONIE European Day Spa
  • HEALTH SPA NAPA VALLEY
  • HEARTWOOD SPA
  • INDIAN SPRINGS NAPA VALLEY
  • ISIS OASIS RETREAT CENTER
  • KABUKI SPRINGS & SPA
  • KENWOOD INN & SPA
  • KIVA RETREAT HOUSE
  • LA BELLE DAY SPAS
  • LAVENDER HILL SPA
  • LIDO PALMS SPA
  • LINCOLN AVENUE SPA
  • THE LODGE AT SKYLONDA
  • MARRIOTT'S DESERT SPRINGS RESORT & SPA
  • MISTER LEE'S BEAUTY, HAIR & HEALTH SPA
  • MOUNT VIEW HOTEL & SPA
  • NANCE'S HOT SPRINGS
  • NOB HILL SPA
  • THE OAKS AT OJAI
  • ORR HOT SPRINGS
  • OSMOSIS ENZYME BATH & MASSAGE
  • THE PALMS AT PALM SPRINGS
  • PIEDMONT SPRINGS
  • PRESTON-WYNNE
  • RANCHO LA PUERTA
  • RIVER VILLAGE RESORT & SPA
  • ROSE MARI'S RUSSIAN RIVER SPA & MASSAGE
  • SHIBUI GARDENS
  • A SIMPLE TOUCH
  • SONOMA SPA ON THE PLAZA
  • SPA AT MACARTHUR PLACE
  • SPA HOTEL HEALDSBURG
  • SPA NORDSTROM
  • SPA RADIANCE
  • STELLAR SPA
  • STEWART'S MINERAL SPRINGS
  • SYCAMORE MINERAL SPRINGS RESORT
  • TEA GARDEN SPRINGS
  • TWO BUNCH PALMS RESORT & SPA
  • VICHY HOT SPRINGS RESORT & INN
  • VINEYARD CREEK HOTEL, SPA & CONFERENCE CENTER
  • WATERCOURSE WAY
  • WELL WITHIN
  • WHITE SULPHUR SPRINGS INN & SPA
  • WILBUR HOT SPRINGS HEALTH SANCTUARY
  • DR. WILKINSON'S HOT SPRINGS

 

 

About the Author
Laurel Cook Laurel Olson Cook has published three previous guides to California spas. When she is not writing on this topic, she is running her home-based editorial services business, A Way with Words, and working on a memoir inspired by the 1916 urban farmhouse she bought in 1996.

 

 

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