small spa bites

I’m not a big fan of slavishly following the trends but it’s hard not to notice the sudden ubiquity of mini spa services turning up like tapas on so many menus these days. With 46 percent of International Spa Association member spas seeing an increase in shorter (30 minutes or less) treatment bookings, and 86 percent offering shorter treatments, it looks like we’re officially knee deep into a major trend.

And it’s hard to argue with the practicality of smaller bites, as it were.   For the neophyte, it provides excellent value at lower price points and is a great way to pick and choose something new from a variety of treatments.  For the spa veteran, multiple appetizer-sized spa treatments are now an affordable indulgence, even during the recession.

Here are just a few places where you can go sampling:

The Stillwater Spa at Hyatt Regency Newport recently transformed itself after a resort-wide $35 million renovation and offers treatments designed with innovative, marine-based products in harmony with five key elements – plant, water, stone, salt and air – and focused on achieving four states of well being – physical, spiritual, emotional, and social.  For anyone looking to experience the elements without spending all their time doing that math in their heads, the spa has affordable 25-minute installments, like Tapas Soles Foot Massage, Color Shot Tasting, Tapas Soles Foot Massage and Tapas Facial.   Spa tapas are available Sunday through Thursday between the hours of 3-7 pm – kind of like a spa Happy Hour.  Order one for $50, order two for $95, order three for $145, or order four for $195.

With a lush, welcoming design and a host of innovative treatments,  Seagate Spa is a select serenity stop for hotel guests and local clientele.  Located within Delray Beach’s newly opened The Seagate Hotel, the spa offers several mini spa treatments, each under $65, including a sea salt body polish, reflexology, the express facial and a relaxing massage. The spa also features seven treatment rooms, a full wet room with Vichy shower, two large steam rooms, a Bikram yoga studio and a manicure/ pedicure suite.

The Yachts of Seabourn’s Spa Villas offer express spa services where guest receive the utmost in pampering on the outdoor spa deck.  Services range from mini-hot stone massages, facials and acupuncture to manicures, pedicures and paraffin treatments.  With the waves serving as the backdrop, these mini-treatments are available aboard all Seabourn yachts, including Seabourn Sojourn, which will be unveiled in June 2010.  Prices start at $15.

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