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March 11, 2024

The Best Spas in New York

From caviar facials to amethyst crystal steam rooms, you'll find it all in the concrete jungle.

By Ellys Woodhouse

With the nickname of the city that never sleeps, it’s no wonder that a 2022 study found New York to be the most stressful city in the US – and 30th in the world. But if there’s one positive thing to come from the fried nerves of New Yorkers, it is that the city is home to some of the world’s best spas – each with an important role to play in helping soothe the aches and pains of living in the bustling metropolis. (Because even tourists who spend their days exploring the city’s best restaurants, hotels or galleries will know this city can be as exhausting as it is exciting.) 

And just as you never know what to expect in New York, this selection of spas and their wellness treatments are as diverse as the city they call home. Whether it’s treating high blood pressure caused by delays on the subway, or the city’s fog, smog and pollution dulling the skin’s glow, you will find there are plenty of ways to get your rest and relaxation within the concrete jungle. 

[See also: The Best Wellness Retreats in the US]

La Prairie Spa at Ritz-Carlton Central Park

La Prairie Spa Ritz-Carlton Central Park
The Ritz-Carlton New York, Central Park is one of the two La Praire Spas in the US / ©The Ritz-Carlton

In its only location on the East Coast, the Swiss luxury skincare brand La Prairie has created a serene retreat within The Ritz-Carlton New York, Central Park. Luxury in its most classical definition, the spa is decorated with a warm palette of wood and marble accents, fresh cut flowers and plush soft furnishings. Here it’s not just about aesthetics and light comforts, the spa focuses on offering treatments that are both therapeutic and results-based. 

From head to toe, body to mind, all bases are covered. Since the skincare brand is renowned for its anti-aging products, of course, La Prairie Spa has a signature wellness treatment, its Winter Glow or Caviar Firming Facials, which unsurprisingly is one of its most popular treatments.

Meanwhile, the spa is also due to launch a new wellness offering in April 2024, one that focuses on spiritual well-being as well. The Forest Bathing experience invites guests to immerse themselves in New York’s most iconic green space, which is found directly on the hotel’s doorstep. A guide will invite guests through meditation, providing instructions to help guests embrace a slower pace of life.

ritzcarlton.com

The Spa At The Mandarin Oriental New York

Spa and Wellness at Mandarin Oriental
The VIP Spa Suite aims to transport its guests to Thailand / ©Mandarin Oriental

Overlooking Manhattan, the Spa and Wellness facilities at Mandarin Oriental is an oasis in the skies of Colombus Circle. The facility is guided by the brand’s Eastern culture and heritage, in its architecture with bamboo, Chinese furniture and Japanese rice paper window treatments, its signature holistic treatments and even an Oriental Tea Lounge. While every detail is, of course, sublime, it would be amiss not to mention the hotel’s signature Amethyst Crystal Steam Room. Guests surround an amethyst crystal centerpiece and under subdued lighting and soothing fragrances, experience the soothing and calming sensation owed from the 110ºF steam.

For the ultimate luxury experience, however, there is the VIP Spa Suite, a first-of-its-kind in the city. The top suite, known as the Thai Suite for the fact that it hopes to transport guests to the tropical shores of Ko Samui or the Phi Phi Islands, is designed to replicate an Oriental-style home, complete with a fireplace, deep soaking tub, dual massage beds, and stunning views to boot. Yet in a city like New York, a good secret never remains a secret for long, and since availability in the spa can be tricky – the hotel recommends making bookings at least two weeks in advance – from April, the brand has announced it will extend its opening to operate seven days a week, 11am to 6pm.  

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mandarinoriental.com

The Spa By Equinox Hotels

The Spa by Equinox Hotels
The Spa by Equinox Hotels takes a results-driven approach to wellness / ©Equinox Hotels

The ethos at The Spa by Equinox Hotels is not so much to make you feel better, but to make you feel your best. Everything here screams excellence. The spa’s science-backed, results-driven treatment menu has been designed for inner and outer body excellence. Even the spa’s design is sleek and precise, with dramatic straight lines, subdued lighting and cool stone walls. 

Treatment offerings are designed almost like exercise rituals, referred to as ‘circuits’ with five elements recommended to be completed: beauty, performance healing, temperative therapy, inner body and sleep. Some of the innovative treatments on offer include the Icoone Roboderm, a noninvasive lymphatic body-sculpting device that helps to reduce the appearance of cellulite, muscle tension and soreness; MLX I3DOME, an infrared temperature therapy treatment; and the Gold Collagen Facial, a collaboration with Dr Lara Devgan, renown for her use of modern technology in facial optimizations.

equinox-hotels.com/nyc

[See also: The Best Urban Spas of 2023]

Bamford Wellness Spa At 1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge

Bamford Wellness at 1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge
Bamford Wellness Spa’s design mirrors its all-natural ethos / ©1 Hotels

Bringing English sensibility Stateside, the Bamford Wellness at 1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge takes a holistic approach to wellness, intending to give its guests a heartfelt connection back to nature – a vital reminder in the Concrete Jungle.

The product of organic pioneer Carole Bamford, known for her dedication to championing traditional ideas and promoting natural living; and that same dedicated approach is on full display at 1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge. You’ll only find natural and organic ingredients on the menu here, with each treatment certified to the very highest standard.

The spa’s interiors echo this emphasis on all things natural, using a cool neutral color palette and heavy use of reclaimed wood to create a serene and inviting atmosphere. In addition to the extensive treatment menu on offer, which includes massages, facials and grooming services, Bamford Wellness Spa has also partnered with HigherDose to offer premium add-ons, including signature treatments such as the Infrared Sauna Wrap, Infrared PEMF Mat, and Red Light Face Mask.

1hotels.com

The Spa at Four Seasons Hotel New York Downtown 

Four Seasons Hotel New York Downtown
Four Seasons Hotel New York Downtown is an all-luxe, first-class wellness offering / ©Four Seasons

Lower Manhattan can feel too stuffy and serious sometimes, so it may come as a relief that just a few streets over from Wall Street and One World Trade Center, Four Seasons Hotel New York Downtown offers the perfect escape. Ultra-luxe and premiere treatments are all the range here. Unbeknownst guests would be forgiven for mistaking signature treatment offerings for a luxurious dinner menu when the lavish ingredients include green caviar, Swiss milk, chardonnay and gold.

The Luxury Green Caviar Face Lift remains a well-loved favorite pre-events, where first the skin is plumped using the Vitaskin Ultrasound before being dosed with green caviar and gold trace elements.

For those looking for full-body rejuvenation, the Purifying Mud Ritual from Omorovicza remains a sublime choice, where guests enjoy a detoxifying salt exfoliation before being enveloped in a cleansing wrap of Hungarian moor mud and then rubbed down with a warmed rose quartz massage. 

Despite taking a high-tech high-touch approach, the brand is far from distracted by all the flashing lights and latest mod-cons and understands to prioritize mental and spiritual wellbeing, too. The onsite curated group of experts known as The Collective is available for group, couples or private sessions in hypnosis, astrology readings, and crystal therapy to provide the ultimate spiritual self-care. 

fourseasons.com

Dr. Barbara Sturm

Dr Barbara Sturm spas New York
New York boasts two Dr. Barbara Sturm spas / ©Dr Barbara Sturm

Breaking the running theme of the spas associated with world-class hotel brands, but we had to made an exception for German aesthetics doctor Barbara Sturm. Her science-based approach to the philosophy of wellness has earned her a cult following around the world – and for good reason. Among her many pioneering and futuristic treatments, some of the most popular include her non-surgical age-defying treatments – some of which utilize one’s own blood cells to treat inflammatory conditions.

New York City is home to two Dr. Barbara Sturm spas, one on Madison Avenue and another in SoHo, with each location taking the same futuristic approach to its aesthetic choices as it does to wellness offerings: picture minimalist interiors, clean concrete walls and tons of bright natural lighting.

drsturm.com

[See also: Winter Spa Retreats for New Year Wellness]

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