Treat yourself to a decadently delightful visit to the spa this spring. It's the perfect way to kick off the season, and ready your toes to kick off those winter boots. Here are some of our favourites.
Goat Milk Bath, $105
Beautiful Mama is an idyllic, holistic spa in the heart of Downtown Burlington that caters to expecting, new and seasoned moms. Their signature Goat Milk Bath is the perfect escape for those seeking relaxation and rejuvenation. This decadent treatment starts with the application of a body scrub, freshly brewed in-house of organic brown sugar, essential oils (lavender, Roman chamomile and mandarin) and fractured coconut oil providing full body exfoliation. Essential oils set the mood for body, mind and spirit and can be customized to every preference: calming and relaxing or more uplifting and invigorating. Once fully immersed in this alluring concoction, it is a few steps from the massage bed to the welcoming double soaker tub to be engulfed in a mixture of warm water, organic oatmeal powder, the same essential oil blend and goat's milk. Soaking in goat's milk (a favourite pastime and beauty secret of Cleopatra's) is excellent for improving the texture and condition of the skin. By candlelight, luxuriate in calming solitude in this soothing bath for 15 minutes. Then fully relaxed, it is back to the massage bed for 30 minutes of satisfying full body massage. The Goat Milk Bath is a wonderful indulgence culminating in soft, glowing skin from head to toe and a completely serene mind ““ pure bliss. Professional child-minding services are also available Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Lily Pad Room.
Beautiful Mama, 416 Pearl Street, Downtown Burlington, 289.288.2999
Botarin Age-Reverse Facial, $120
For a facial with tangible results, head to Sanctuary Day Spas for their Botarin Age-Reverse Facial. This signature treatment incorporates a range of products from Botarin, exclusively imported from Austria especially for Sanctuary Day Spas. I sip tea in the lounge, with its shimmering gold wall treatment as I wait for my appointment. Then I am ushered into a soothing, quiet treatment room for the facial. The idea behind the Age-Reverse Facial is just that, visible anti-aging results. All of the products used in the treatment are designed to offer pleasant and effective active ingredients, including the innovative ingredients Easyliance and Argireline. Argireline gently relaxes muscles, while Easyliance immediately smoothes and firms. Skin is smoothed after the first use, and with continued use of the at-home products, users claim to see a reduction in wrinkle depth by up to 42 per cent. The facial begins with deep cleansing and clarifying with Botarin's Two-Phase Skin Tonic, then a moisturizing massage and Intense Lifting Serum XL and Intense Lifting Eye Crí¨me do their work. A head, neck and arm massage complete the treatment, sending you into ultimate relaxation.
Sanctuary Spa, 130 Trafalgar Road South, 905.337.0055
Body Wrap with Champagne Essence, $105
When in the Niagara-on-the-Lake region, what better way to indulge than with a little Champagne in the morning? So I head off to the lovely Secret Garden Spa tucked into the lower level of the Prince of Wales Hotel. The hotel and spa are just that, princely. Rich finishes and the crown emblem embellish the hotel from top to bottom, and at the spa, expect to be treated royally. A body wrap is always one of my favourites, so adding Champagne essence sounds brilliant to me. The treatment begins with the application of a detoxifying, cleansing and toning product that contains real apples and Champagne. The fruit acid in the apples and the bubbly act as natural exfoliators. Once fully slathered with the wonderfully scented concoction, you're wrapped snugly in a heated blanket. A scalp massage is then performed, adding even more to the relaxing quality of this treatment. Then off to the in-room shower to cleanse off the wrap, to return to the table to be massaged with the Secret Garden's signature body lotion with essence of mandarin and vanilla. This treatment is recommended for all skin types, and especially for those who wish to reduce the appearance of cellulite.
Secret Garden Spa at the Prince of Wales, 6 Picton Street, Niagara-on-the-Lake, 905.468.3246
Vinotherapy Facial, $125
Since I'm in wine country, a signature Vinotherapy treatment seems like the perfect way to spend the afternoon. The Vinotherapy Treatments at 100 Fountain Spa are their signature treatments and incorporate Vitality Skin and Body Care Products. The treatment begins with a Thai Lemongrass Soy Cleanser to remove impurities while soothing sensitive skin. Antioxidant infused oils help promote moisture retention and elasticity. A swipe of balancing toner containing antioxidant grape skins, and extraction is performed if required. Green Tea Antioxidant Eye Gel with rooibos to soothe and stabilize the skin and Grapeskin Anti-aging Serum add moisture while targeting wrinkles. A masque is applied to detoxify and hydrate that also contains grape skin, and finally the decadent sounding ““ and feeling ““ Bordeaux Liposome Crí¨me is applied. A rich, all-natural deep moisturizing cream, the liposomes act as a delivery vehicle of free radical scavengers to prevent premature aging and give tired cells a welcome boost. While at the 100 Fountain Spa, don't forget to plan to spend a little extra time to enjoy the outdoor hot springs. Delightful.
100 Fountain Spa at Pillar and Post, 48 John Street, Niagara-on-the-Lake, 905.468.2123
Organic Chocolate Pedicure , $90
>> If a pretty drive through the country is on the agenda, head north towards Alton Village and visit the Millcroft Inn & Spa. It's an idyllic location for a weekend away, but if a day is all you have, check into the Spa for the afternoon. The spa at Millcroft has combined two of the very best indulgences of all time: chocolate and a pedicure. If you're a pedicure junkie, like me, this is a must-try treatment. The Organic Chocolate Pedicure begins with the usual soak and nail care, but adds an exfoliation with the Millcroft's own organic chocolate scrub. The very fine scrub is massaged and washed away, and then a rich chocolate masque is applied. If you have ever experienced a paraffin treatment, the process is much the same. The rich, warm chocolate mud is applied via “˜booties' and then warming boots are slipped on and you are left to relax and sip tea. Once the chocolate masque is washed away, a rich ginger scented cream is massaged into feet and legs and your toes are prepped for polish. Millcroft Spa used only Sparitual nail polish products which contain none of those nasty chemicals. Once your toes are shiny and ready to go, slip into a poolside lounge chair, or relax with a spa lunch ““ you need 30 to 40 minutes to dry after all.
Millcroft Inn & Spa, 55 John Street, Alton, 519.941.8111
Qi-Tranquility Facial, $150
Qi-Tranquility Spa is one of the new faces on the block in downtown Oakville, tucked into the corner of Dunn and Robinson. The spa aesthetic and treatments are inspired by the spa rituals of Thailand and the space reflects a soothing Eastern aesthetic. Rich wood tones are highlighted by glowing candles and a fountain softly trickles in the reception area. After being led downstairs to change into a thick spa robe, the treatment begins with a foot soak. At Qi-Tranquility body treatments, facials and massages begin with a relaxing foot soak, exfoliation and application of rich body lotion. I'm here for the signature facial: the Qi Tranquility Facial incorporating products from the Immuni-Tea Collection from Eminence Organic Skin Care. This facial is completely personalized to your own skin care needs, and depending on type may incorporate free-radical fighting green, white and rooibos teas, and a unique combination of cleaners, masques and hydration. A tea blend for my skin type is “brewed” in a pretty silver bowl, and the warm liquid is incorporated into the facial. The ritual takes a facial treatment to another level, with the warmth and fragrance of fruit-spiked tea filling the room. The treatment is finished with a neck and arm massage with sweet Honeydew Body Lotion, and my own dry, sensitive skin has never looked better.
Qi Spa, 88 Dunn Street, Downtown Oakville, 905.847.5855
Hot Towel & Facial Shave, $35
One thing all men learn at a very young age is that nothing ““ and I do mean nothing ““ beats the luxury of a really good shave. A professional shave is such a basic pleasure, yet so few men allow themselves the time to enjoy such a luxury in these go-go-go days of round-the-clock connectivity. Taking an hour out of one's life for a little personal self-indulgence shaves away more than just the day's whiskers. You can't help but come out of the experience looking ““ and feeling ““ 10 years younger. The décor screams masculinity, a den-like blend of rich colours and textures, TV screens playing the big game everywhere, sumptuous Bolero chairs that invite one to get comfy. Imagine the Rat Pack getting ready for a night on Broadway and you get the basic drift. The lounge spans two levels in a new building, with shaving and hair grooming on the main floor and a full range of body care services offered downstairs. I sink into the soft leather recliner in the shaving area, and melt under the soothing warmth of the steaming hot towel that softens my whiskers for the blade. Warmed shaving cream feels bubbly and effervescent on my skin, but my mind is wandering to the sounds of “˜Ol Blue Eyes enticing me to “Come Fly With Him”. Fully relaxed, I'm only remotely aware of the straight-edge gliding across my cheek. A post-shave application of tea tree oil brings me back into focus and rejuvenates my skin, as one of the lounge's two licensed estheticians takes my hand and begins a mini hand treatment. Sinatra would definitely approve.
New York, New York, 2082 Pine Street, Downtown Burlington, 289.337.6085