With wellness still a major travel trend for 2019, where better to head for that next health-focused retreat than the other-worldly Sonoran Desert. Located just outside of Scottsdale, Arizona the eco-chic CIVANA (one of the largest destination wellness retreats in the country) offers the perfect place to disconnect. Set in beautiful grounds dotted with cacti and palm trees, time spent at the new two-story spa sanctuary – freshly opened from the resort’s recent $50 million renovation – makes for theserenest of weekend getaways.
There is an emphasis on hydrotherapy modalities andritual of “taking the waters”at CIVANA, key spa traditions they say help ground the body, pre- and post-treatment.Here,the new state-of-the-artspa facility boasts 28 treatment areas in total, including a Watsu therapy pool, three wet rooms (including a Vichy shower for the ultimate ‘rain massage’), five facial rooms, and 13 massage rooms. The Aqua Vitality Circuit, which features a European-designed Kneipp hot/cold wading pool, tepidarium therapeutic soaking pool, and cold deluge shower, are the holy trinityfor hydrotherapy lovers.The SANARIUM from German sauna specialists KLAFS (the only one in the U.S.) has five-climate settings, which can be switched between classic Finnish sauna to tropical, warm air, soft steam or herbal steam bath, as desired.
There’s a holistic focus on all modalities, rituals and wellbeing therapies at CIVANA – the spa treatment menu will definitely leave guests spoiled for choice and wanting to come back for more. Rose quartz crystals, protective turquoise, and obsidian are incorporated in the Sonoran Sea Facial, while the Bio Energy Lift Facial uses a Microcurrent system to re-energize skin. The Marine Detox Wrap (dry-mitt exfoliation and warming wrap followed by a Vichy shower) and Sonoran Rain Dance (alternating warm and then cold waters relax tight muscles, promote lymphatic drainage and awaken the senses, respectively) will soothe the most stressed out of souls. For energy work and Eastern therapies there is Reiki and Thai massage.
CIVANA also has two dedicated treatment rooms that offer private and exclusive spaces for couples so for those seeking to experience some serious spa time with a loved one try a Spa Journey for Two. Options include a Tandem Hot Stone Massage and Sacred Time; a two-hour experience that comprises an energizing foot ritual, custom massages and soothing soak in a private bath. Interested in water therapy? Try a Watsu session. A combination of the words water and shiatsu (the ancient Japanese bodywork modality) Watsu incorporates targeted massage and meditative breathing to help increase circulation.
With majestic views of Black Mountain and some unforgettable Sonoran Desert sunsets, the adults-only pool is perfect for swimmers and sun worshipers. Those looking to relax can snag a lounger on the sun deck – where healthy, plant-based bites and beverages, including an organic cocktail menu, are served at CAFE meto. And, in keeping with CIVANA’s second and fourth pathways to wellness – MOVE and ENRICHMENT – a dozen complimentary classes and programs run daily, including sound baths, flower essence workshops, aerial yoga, and sunrise vinyasa on the outside yoga lawn, weather permitting. Moderate morning hikes, guided walks around the 20-acre property, and mountain bike classes (ride single track trails on brand new-suspension bikes) are also offered.
CIVANA also offers Spacation and Daycation passes for locals and visitors alike who want to experience resort amenities without the overnight. Perks include a reduction on the daily room rate, a 75-minute Swedish massage (in connection with the Spacation package only), dining credit and discounts off private programming and retail.
Located an easy 15-mile drive from Scottsdale Airport, and around 40-minutes from downtown, guests willing (or able) to drag themselves away from CIVANA will find plenty of must-see and dos nearby. Highlights include the Scottsdale Museum of Modern Art (SMOCA), Frank Lloyd Wright’s former desert laboratory, Taliesin West, and the Desert Botanical Garden in nearby Phoenix.