Visiting the City of Angels often feels like you’ve stepped onto a giant movie set, with its film studios, locations and the iconic Hollywood sign. But when your feet ache, there’s nothing better than a bit of pampering. Culture Trip rounds up the best spa and wellness hotels that can soothe away your sightseeing fatigue.
Santa Monica Proper is a wellness-focused haven close to the golden beaches of the Westside. Decked out in soothing earth tones, the designer rooms have plenty of luxury touches – bespoke furniture, honey-colored tiling and quilted half-moon headboards. Sun-seekers can lose days by the rooftop pool, and fitness enthusiasts can make use of the state-of-the-art gym; but if you’re after true relaxation, head down to the Surya spa. The holistic ayurvedic treatments range from herbal oil massages to traditional color therapy – using the healing properties of different shades.
This sanctuary for ecowarriors, vegans and the spiritual provides a pocket of peace in the chaos of LA. The boutique hotel takes a holistic approach to wellness – crystals sit on sustainably sourced coffee tables, the aroma of frankincense pervades, and mood-boosting salt lamps are dotted throughout. Four cavernous rooms include patchwork blankets and bathrooms stocked with bamboo toilet paper and vegan toiletries. In the morning, tuck into a complimentary, locally sourced, organic breakfast on the sun terrace, surrounded by a jungle of plant life.
The Waldorf Astoria has luxury in abundance. A rooftop pool surrounded by pinstripe cabanas and palm trees promises sun-soaked relaxation, while a euphoria-inducing endorphin fix can be found in the 24-hour gym. For a heavy dose of pampering, visit La Prairie Spa, where you’ll find a multitude of treatments to indulge in, including deluxe caviar massages, Swiss anti-aging facials and full body scrubs. With your skin glistening, head down for freshly grilled octopus and black truffle tagliatelle in the sleek Jean-Georges restaurant.
The West Hollywood Edition is home to the vegetable-forward fare of Ardor restaurant, spearheaded by acclaimed chef John Fraser. The outdoor patio, crowded with plants, is an idyllic spot to enjoy a forest mushroom omelette, while on the equally verdant roof you can sip film-focused cocktails such as the Lethal Weapon (a concoction of mezcal, Aperol and rhubarb) by the pool. If you’re in need of inner healing, head to the luxury spa for restorative mind and body therapies, self-guided meditation and natural body treatments.
A desire for health and happiness is at the core of this Four Seasons hotel, evident in its award-winning spa, wellness kitchen and luxury salon. Days can be spent watching healthy-cooking demonstrations, taking a guided hike around the rugged Conejo Valley and finding balance with chakra therapy. Soak your hands in warm bubbles with a Champagne Ritual manicure in Rhythm & Hair – a self-pampering prelude to nigiri sushi served in the onsite Japanese restaurant, Onyx. Lined with sunshine-yellow umbrellas, the emerald gardens’ serenity pool is not only great for cooling off, but also offers a relaxing spot for a drink and a bite to eat.
Overlooking the cobalt seas and white sands of the Santa Monica coast, Shutters on the Beach has found favor with A-listers including Jennifer Aniston. The coffee-and-cream-colored oasis includes an outdoor pool deck, a mahogany-paneled gym and a One spa offering hammam treatments and hot stone massages for maximum relaxation. Most rooms echo the wellness theme with hydrothermal massage tubs and a palette of calming oceanic-blues. If you’d like to spend some time in the ocean, you can even sign up for surfing lessons.
A palatial retreat situated just minutes from Downtown Pasadena, the Langham deals in classic elegance. Behind its rose-colored façade lie crystal chandeliers, Georgian-style ballrooms and a manicured lawn where you can play badminton and croquet. Award-winning Chuan Spa takes its lead from traditional Chinese medicine: enter through the silvery Moon Gate for remedying treatments such as the Chuan Muddy Elements – a destressing scrub and submersion in mud. When you’re ready to refuel, try the succulent wood-fired steak in the onsite restaurant, the Royce.