3 Destination Spas Provide International Peace

These supremely serene new retreats are worth the jet lag.

Remede Spa, St. Regis Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

Essere Spa, Castello di Casole, Casole D’Elsa, Italy, It took seven years to convert Castello di Casole, a 10th-century castle in the Tuscan countryside, into a divine 41-suite hotel, which opened for business in July 2012. This fall, the spa makes its debut under the vaulted ceilings of the former wine cellar, with a menu of treatments featuring locally sourced skin-boosting ingredients like grape-seed and olive oils. If you’re not sufficiently relaxed after a facial, a honey-infused massage, and a few downward-facing dogs in the outdoor yoga pavilion, try a glass of the villa’s homegrown Sangiovese, which is available only to guests.


Bamford Haybarn Spa, The Berkeley Hotel, London, The historic Berkeley Hotel in Knightsbridge boasts one of London’s few rooftop pools and has just added a posh spa right beneath it. The 6,000-square-foot space is minimal-chic; treatments balance indulgence with an eco angle, employing Bamford’s much celebrated organic skincare line. Book an overnight stay in a “king balcony room,” which features an English garden–themed outdoor space. With latticework and boxwood hedges, it’s private enough to allow for an alfresco massage—English weather permitting, of course.


Remede Spa, St. Regis Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, In the United Arab Emirates—home to some of the most gigantic oil fortunes on earth—bigger is always better. This enormous spa, in the opulent new St. Regis hotel overlooking the Arabian Gulf, features treatment suites larger than typical Manhattan studio apartments, complete with private showers and water views through the floor-to-ceiling windows. The most copious local ingredient in this part of the world is desert sand, which is mixed with argan oil and sea salt in a body scrub. And though the list of services is lengthy, one thing you won’t find is a couples massage: In keeping with local customs, the establishment is ladies-only. Men have their own spa in a separate space.