Jamaica’s resort spas use local plants, indigenous healing remedies and a healthy dose of spectacular scenery to soothe their guests. Let the pampering begin.
It’s tough vacationing in a tropical paradise like Jamaica; there’s the constant threat of repetitive use injuries from things your desk job just doesn’t prepare you for, like swinging a golf club, lolling on the beach and lifting a cocktail glass to your lips. Relax, and let someone else fix you with the “works.” The Crescent Moon Package ($425) at Fern Tree Spa at Half Moon Resort includes a 50-minute facial, a 50-minute massage and a 50-minute body therapy and soak. Want to go native? A Spa Elder consultation ($65) will help you choose which Jamaican “bush” remedies — custom mixes of herbs, flowers, bark and roots that are grown on-site — will restore your golf swing quickest. If that isn’t enough to revive your tired muscles, give the 80-minute Fern Tree Signature Massage ($170) a shot, in which a Jamaican Cerasee foot bath is followed by a massage using essential oils infused with pimento (allspice), ginger and orange. (+1 876 684-0477; www.halfmoon.rockresorts.com/spa)
Farther west, overlooking a protected cove on the Caribbean, Round Hill Spa (15 minutes from Montego Bay) carries a long, almost edible list of facials and skin renewal therapies made with locally found ingredients. Try the Pineapple Body Buff ($100), the Exotic Coconut and Milk Ritual Wrap ($135) or the Frangipani Body Nourish Wrap ($110) made with plumeria. If you really want to let the luxe loose (or you’re just feeling spoiled), get Round Hill’s version of the “works” — the Spirit of Jamaica Spa Ritual ($250), which includes a 75-minute Japanese Silk Booster Facial and a 50-minute well-being massage (+1 876 956-7050; www.roundhill.com).
Sometimes the setting makes the spa. The Rockhouse Spa, perched on top of Negril’s cliﬀs, makes visitors feel heavenly in temple-like cabanas surrounded by lush gardens. Bamboo day beds beckon for treatments like the Signature Spa Experience ($265), which starts with a footbath and scrub followed by an exfoliating brown sugar-based full-body Island Mint Scrub and Wrap. The wrap is administered in private chambers off a courtyard to the sound of a gurgling fountain and chirping birds. The Fully Loaded plan goes a step further, promising true Nirvana. It lets you sample virtually every treatment on offer in 50-minute installments over the course of five days ($375). (+1 876-957-4373; www.rockhousehotel.com)
The Aveda Concept Spa at The Caves offers treatments in a stunning, open-air gazebo perched atop a cliff that overlooks the aqua blue sea. If the view’s not enough — your eyes should be closed anyway, right? — then the sound of waves crashing below will set your mind at ease. And, don’t worry, the sound quality here is waaay better than on your Sharper Image white noise alarm clock. The ultimate indulgence — the one that your eyes will definitely be closed for — is the exclusive Caves Massage ($120), which takes place inside a candlelit cave by the water’s edge. (+1 876-957-0270; www.islandoutpost.com)
SPIRIT OF JAMAICA:
Jerk chicken isn’t the only thing providing local flavor. With its rich endowment of healing plants, Jamaica is a spa hotspot, so don’t miss these unique, locally infused treatments.
Oasis Spa and Salon at Couples Swept Away:
The Reggaesage ($60) is a 25-minute massage routine that incorporates the rhythms of Jamaican music. +1 876-9574061; couples.com
Red Lane Spa at Sandals Resorts
The West Indian Massage ($202), an 80-minute cocoon pressure service, includes island elements like warm river stones, tropical rain forest-scented mist and a white-sand foot exfoliation. +1 876-953-2231, sandals.com/RedLane
Aveda Concept Spa at The Caves
The Blue Mountain Coffee Scrub uses local coffee grinds ($90). +1 876-9570270; islandoutpost.com
Rockhouse Spa in Negril
The Jamaican Mocha/Rum Wrap ($108) soothes you with rum in a novel way; it’s mixed with local cocoa and Shea butter, and rubbed into your tense muscles. +1 876-957-4373; rockhousehotel.com
The KiYara Ocean Spa at Jamaica Inn in Ocho Rios
The Piña Colada Body Polish ($180), with pineapple and coconut, is good enough to eat. +1 876-974-2380; kiyaraspa.com