47 0 mud mask bio spa 3 in 1 0 13 6. Whether you like your body scrubbed with powdered black pearls, rubbed with hot jade stones, or wrapped in coca leaves, there’s a spa out there for you.
Here’s a disappointing scenario: you decide to take a well-deserved spa getaway in an exotic locale—say, Morocco or Tahiti—and on your first day, you’re ushered to your treatment room. Until recently, this situation was common at spas all over the globe. Many facilities, even those in places with their own time-honored beauty rituals, chose to embrace big-name international cosmetic products instead of ingredients indigenous to their locations. Consequently, traveling spa-goers are now likely to see ancient, and decidedly local, remedies popping up on treatment menus. And while some of these incorporate ingredients that are at least somewhat familiar sounding—cedar, coca leaf, Tahitian black pearl—others may require a bigger leap of faith. It takes a sense of adventure to submit to a South African fynbos exfoliation, for example, or a Mexican Tepezcohuite Body Drench. Spa guests who are unsure about trying an indigenous ingredient, says Mary Bemis, editor in chief of Organic Spa Magazine, should speak up.
Since the trend of using these ingredients can be seen as an extension of eco-awareness, Bemis says, products are often harvested sustainably. Guests want to experience that ingredient that’s been tried and tested for a thousand years. Where to Try It: In the Arabian Gold Ritual at the Six Senses Hideaway Zighy Bay in Oman, guests are exfoliated with a basil and mint scrub, then painted with a purifying gold-and-clay body mask. Next comes an invigorating massage of the scalp, face, and body—the latter with a gold-infused oil. Caribbean natives have long considered this shell lining to be health-friendly, likely because it’s rich in proteins and anti-aging keratins. The soft, powdery shell bits help to slough off dead skin cells and polish and revitalize the skin underneath. Mayans to stop bleeding, prevent infection, and treat lesions.
Where to Try It: Opening in March 2009, the Aurora Spa at Mexico City’s Las Alcobas hotel will feature influences from the Mayan, Aztec, Toltec, Nahuatl, and contemporary Mexican healing cultures. The one-hour Tepezcohuite Body Drench is a cooling, hydrating, and therapeutic body salve combining the restorative bark with aloe and mint—perfect for parched or sunburnt skin. Where to Try It: Bio-Maple is now an integral part of the B. China for more than 3,000 years. Where to Try It: During the Monoi Poe treatment at the Manihi Pearl Beach Resort in Tahiti, you’ll get buffed with a combination of real Tahitian black pearls—harvested at one of Manihi’s 60 pearl farms—and indigenous monoi, a hydrating nut oil used by all local women. Skin is left smooth and glowing.
Where to Try It: At the Aspira Spa in Wisconsin, cedar gathered from the ancient trees growing along nearby Elkhart Lake is used in the signature Cedars Massage. The treatment—which incorporates cedar-infused massage oil and a wrap in a blanket layered with fragrant sprigs—was influenced by the traditions of the local Ojibwa Tribe. For centuries, native Berber women have ground up the pits and seeds of these fruits and pressed them to produce an oil for use in cooking and body treatments. Where to Try It: At the Amanjena Resort in Marrakesh, the traditional communal hammam experience has been refined into the pampering Moroccan Bloom spa treatment. Guests enjoy a steam, a wash with locally made black soap, a thorough body scrub, and a rhassoul clay body mask, topped off by a dousing with refreshing eucalyptus-infused water.
Spa’s Mayan-influenced menu includes an Achiote Hydrating Wrap—which does exactly what it says—and also an Xux Ek Venus Goddess Facial, which mixes mud from the Chicxulub meteor crater with achiote to nourish tired and dry skin. Next, hot jade stones are used during a deep massage, helping to loosen muscles and—ostensibly—impart mental clarity and spiritual harmony. Afrikaans, fynbos refers to the unique vegetation found in South Africa’s Cape Floral Kingdom—a lush coastal belt that stretches from the Western Cape to Port Elizabeth in the southeast. Spa in Knysna, South Africa, all signature treatments use products based on indigenous fynbos recipes. Mhute Steam Experience combines a steam, scrub, and fynbos mud wrap to hydrate and regenerate skin. And the product line Swiss Perfection Cellular Skin Care mixes the mountain runoff with active and intact cells of the Iris Germanica root.
The result, says the company, is a formula that can rejuvenate skin tissue, doing everything from hydrating the elbows to firming the bust. Where to Try It: Order up the 90-minute Decollete Treatment at the Clinique La Prairie Spa, set on Lake Geneva in Montreux, Switzerland. Swiss Perfection product line in plenty of other treatments, which range from simple massages to complex anti-aging procedures. Sign Up for our Newsletter Receive exclusive travel deals, insider tips, inspiration, breaking news updates, and more.