Spas at the Sea Upping the Luxury Profile

For clients who can bring themselves to temporarily abandon such stateroom comforts, a spa concierge stands ready to arrange bookings for treatments. Other amenities: priority seating and complimentary dining in the exclusive environs of Blu, a specialty restaurant, and complimentary use of the spa’s aromatic Persian Garden and relaxation room. Close-by, the bubbling warmth of the thalassotherapy pools invite them to soak stress away.

crystal cruises Then there’s Crystal Cruises and its Crystal Spa—the first afloat to employ the principles of feng shui. In July 2008, the line introduced Kinesis fitness equipment aboard the 940-passenger Crystal Symphony and 1,050-passenger Crystal Serenity. Kinesis comprises a series of panels, grips, weight stacks and cables that enable 360-degree movement, allowing for some 250 exercises. Think customized workouts for various fitness levels, designed by a personal trainer to enhance strength, balance and flexibility. One-hour Kinesis personal training sessions are priced at $100, or $254 for three sessions.

The spa, a tranquil retreat accented by serene Asian artifacts, treats guests to panoramic vistas of the sea, and male passengers to a menu designed specifically for them—including the signature Urban Cleanse Facial. Energetic clients should try the Tour de Spinindoor cycling classes, sample the lap pool and paddle tennis courts, and jog along the famously wrap-around, teak Promenade Deck. Also at hand: golf driving ranges and putting greens, shuffleboard courts, and a Walk on Water program that utilizes weighted vests to increase resistance.

In 2008, Crystal added onboard acupuncture to its wellness opportunities, with treatments aimed at such needs as relieving aches and pains, stimulating weight loss and alleviating stress. The cost is $150 for a 60-minute session.

oceania cruises The operative words in the trend toward dedicated areas just for spa guests: convenience and privacy. Both of which reign on the private spa deck featured on all three of Oceania Cruises’ 684-passenger beauties–Regatta, Insignia and Nautica. Expect more of the same aboard the line’s 1,252-passenger Marina set to debut in 2010 and a sister ship scheduled for 2011.

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After indulging in, say, an exfoliation ritual to invigorate the face and body, clients might drift out to the spa deck (complimentary use for one hour before and after treatment) for a whirlpool soak in warmed salt waters to relieve stress and tension. Before or after the soak, they can enjoy either a 15-minute chair massage or a 25-minute body massage in a private cabana.

yachts of seabourn This year will see a giant step in the luxury spa picture for the high-end Yachts of Seabourn. While the line’s current vessels (Pride, Spirit and Legend) offer a facility with treatments ranging from aromatherapy to Chinese reflexology, it’s Odyssey—set to launch in June—that’s capturing the spotlight. The new spa aboard Odyssey (as well as Seabourn ships slated to debut in 2010 and 2011) will be showing off a space leap from the current 2,378 sq. ft. to 11,400 sq. ft.

“In polling our guests it was clear that the spa facility was a feature that had become very important to them,” says Pamela Conover, the company’s president and CEO. “So when we designed the new Seabourn yachts, we dedicated an exceptional amount of space to this facility, with over 11,400 sq. ft. for just 450 guests.”

Spread on Deck 10 will be a pair of sumptuous spa villas, available for booking along with treatments. The villas are laid out with treatment space for two, a bathtub for two, and a private balcony for sunbathing, plus living and dining room areas.

The 2-deck spa will feature seven treatment rooms on Deck 9, including a Garden Villa room with a tub on the balcony, beds for partner massages, and a “dry float” room with a heated waterbed. An outdoor deck space will beckon with a hydropool, relaxation room with heated loungers, and herbal steam/sauna rooms. Along with a full-service salon comes a fitness room, a studio for classes, a Kinesis Wall and an area for Thai massages. For a customized workout plan, clients can look to Seabourn’s staff of personal trainers.

Adds Conover, “A spa treatment makes a great surprise gift. Agents might want to suggest to clients that they treat their spouse to a spa service as a way to add fun and romance to their cruise. For instance, the husband might never get a massage for himself, but if his wife orders it for him, he may really enjoy it. The incentive for agents is to add enjoyment to their clients’ cruise experience.”