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Choosing a Spa

Choosing a Spa doesn’t have to be confusing or difficult. Follow the steps below to find a spa experience that is right for you…

  1. Personal Preference and Purpose: Before choosing a spa, think about what it is that is inspiring you to go in the first place. Think through what services interest you, the kind of atmosphere you are looking for and how much you are willing to spend. Also think about the goals you would like to accomplish. Below is a sampling of typical reasons people tend to go to spas:
    • Pampering and Indulgence: You want to be indulged, taken care of and relaxed
    • Peace of Mind:You want to look inwards and reflect in order to find serenity, understanding and self-acceptance
    • Stress Management:You hope to learn relaxation techniques, how to manage stress, and other strategies for feeling more in balance and in control
    • Fitness: You thrive on activity and look for opportunities to push yourself and test your limits
    • Health and Wellness: You want to deal with bad habits or medical issues that have prevented you from leading a healthier lifestyle
  2. Research References: Once you have figured out what you are looking for, then do your research to find out which spa is best aligned with your personal interests and goals. Resources include:
    • Travel guides and agents specifically geared towards Spa vacations
    • Using online resources such as
    • Friends, family and colleagues recommendations
  3. Professional Affiliation: It is always good to choose a spa that is affiliated with a professional spa-related trade group. This shows the spa’s commitment level to service and professionalism. ISPA, for instance, has developed a Code of Ethics and Standards and Practices for spas. Any spa who is a member of ISPA must meet requirements around staffing, safety, guest relations and service per this code.
  4. Conduct an Interview: If you are trying a new spa, call ahead and ask some key questions to be sure that the spa is legitimate:
    • How long have you been in business?
    • Is the spa licensed by the state?
    • Are all of your therapists and technicians certified or licensed?
    • Will I have to fill out a health questionnaire upon arrival?
    • Are you affiliated with ISPA or any other Spa Associations?
  5. Take a Tour: If you have the ability to visit the spa before booking a treatment, ask for a tour of the spa and observe the following:
    • Sanitary Conditions
    • Size and atmosphere
    • Featured amenities
    • The Spa Menu and what it offers
    • The personnel and how they treat one another and patrons
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