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  • Writer's pictureCarrie Nicholson

Best Tropical Destinations

From hiking towering mountains to practicing yoga in the ocean breeze, Big Island living cultivates wellness, peace, and tranquility. Perhaps it’s the striking natural landscapes and easygoing vibe on the Kona/Kohala Coast that inspires residents to live a holistic lifestyle, free from stress and filled with aloha. Helping to achieve this desirable level of health and wellness are the numerous spas found here, as well as wellness retreats offered frequently throughout the year. Rejuvenate your body, mind, and soul at one of these ultra-luxe locations, all located within just a short drive from Ke Kailani and all of the residential communities within Mauna Lani Resort.

Mauna Lani Hotel & Bungalows Kohala Coast | (800) 367-2323

Inspired by ancient Hawaiians’ rich healing traditions, the Mauna Lani Spa is set to re-open in December following several months of renovations and enhancements. The spa is being re-designed to foster guests’ harmonious journeys towards inner peace and revitalization. Body and facial treatments will use all-natural, local ingredients that are known to create lokahi — harmony and balance. The hotel is currently undergoing a $100 million renovation and will re-open as an Auberge hotel property late this year.

Mauna Kea Beach Hotel

Kohala Coast | (808) 882-5630

Mauna Kea Spa by Mandara offers a combination of Balinese and Hawaiian-inspired therapies within the peaceful Mauna Kea Beach Hotel with its iconic Zen design and expansive Asian art collection, including the spectacular, large-scale 9th century Buddha. The setting will have you unwinding before you even reach the spa! Hotel guests and resort residents may choose one of five luxurious, individual treatment rooms, a couples suite or outdoor cabanas overlooking beautiful Kauna‘oa Beach.

The name Mandara is derived from a Sanskrit legend that tells of gods who searched for the secret to eternal youth and beauty. Inspired by this tale, this full-service spa is a luxury facility with body treatments and skincare offerings – many of which feature its signature Elemis product line. In fact, the Elemis Aroma Stone Therapy is one of Mandara’s signature services, relieving muscle tension and calming the spirit through the use of warm stones and oils to target key energy points on the body. Another unique service is Miracle Micro-Therapy, the only facial exfoliation system that uses natural baking soda crystals along with a high-speed buffer to remove dead skin cells, reduce the appearance of blemishes, age spots, sun spots and scars to brighten skin and blur fine lines.

Fairmont Orchid

Kohala Coast | (808) 887-7538

The Fairmont Orchid’s Spa Without Walls is an award-winning luxury spa destination featuring locally sourced Hawaiian facial and body care products, and ancient healing practices that have been fused into modern treatments and massages. In keeping with its name, the spa boasts eight private, outdoor waterfall hales (huts) and six oceanfront cabanas, where treatments are complemented by the relaxing sounds of water. Three indoor treatment rooms are also available.

Skin-boosting botanicals, as well as Hawaiian sea salt, are incorporated into many spa treatments to help exfoliate and detoxify, while stimulating the senses. One signature treatment is Hiwa Hiwa, a 50-minute experience using traditional lomilomi massage and Fairmont Orchid’s signature Big Island flower essence, followed by a Hawaiian volcanic mud wrap applied to the calves and feet. Lomilomi is a sacred healing art that Hawaiian elders passed down from generation to generation. Long, soothing, rhythmic strokes are achieved by the therapist using both palms and forearms for a full-body wellness massage.

Four Seasons Resort

Kona Coast | 808-325-8000

Perhaps the Hawaii Island’s most luxurious spa, the Hualalai Spa at the Four Seasons Resort is a massive 28,000-square-foot retreat with lush tropical gardens and outdoor spa hales where guests are treated to a distinctly Hawaiian experience. Here, the answer to vitality comes from nature. One of the most popular experiences starts at the spas apothecary bar where local ingredients including aloe, coffee, and passion fruit are hand-selected by a personal spa consultant, then blended together for the ultimate customized body treatment.

The spa’s outdoor hales are the preferred location for individuals’ or couples’ treatments. The attractive wooden huts are surrounded by lush, tropical landscape, scenic ponds, and calming waterfalls. Looking to really indulge? Chooser the Hualalai Experience package, which includes a 50-minute Polynesian Niu Scrub, a 50-minute Hawaiian Lomilomi Massage and a 50-minute facial.

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