During our glorious stay at the Bernardus Lodge & Spa set among the rolling hills of Carmel Valley California, I was fortune enough to experience their spa, which is all about luxury, serenity and tranquility, where nature is woven into the spa both inside and out.
Nature & Tranquility at Bernardus Lodge & Spa
The property itself spreads out across 28 acres of rolling vineyards, orchards and gardens. The property mixes a bit of old world attitude with new world style, elegance and charm. Think epicurean spirit and rustic ranch country chic meets nature and a soothing soul.
Because the Bernardus Lodge & Spa caters to groups, weddings and families as well as couples on a romantic getaway, they have plenty of outdoor space where you can hide out and simply get lost. For example, their rose garden is exquisite and worth spending time in — what a way to relax before or after your spa treatment!
The spa is located right outside the outdoor pool area, which also houses an adult-only jacuzzi which we loved.
The waiting room/lounge area is one of the best features of the spa — look at how relaxing and tranquil this spot is regardless of what direction you look. There is healthy herbal tea, almonds, sunflowers and dried fruit available for snacking, as well as infused water. The most soothing music plays in the background as you unwind and forget about the world for awhile.
The lounge area leads out onto a beautiful terrace that has a ‘warming pool,’ which is between a heated pool and a hot tub at a super comfy temperature of 100 degrees. In other words, perfection! It’s certainly cozy but large enough to do shorter laps if you choose. I simply relaxed into it and found myself dipping in and out for a couple of hours — not a bad way to spend an afternoon I couldn’t help but think on more than one occasion.
I loved the fall foliage surrounding this little private pool area, designated for adults only — it was oh so peaceful!
As you enter the spa, there’s also a lovely gift shop selling local artisan products as well as other unique items from around the country and world. Note to shopaholics: they have spectacular leather bags and uniquely crafted jewelry.
Bernardus Lodge & Spa Treatments
Within the walls of this sun-drenched spa sanctuary, there are rooms for massages, facials and body treatments.
For example, they offer something called the Bernardus Melange, which is a custom tailored experience with integrative and therapeutic techniques that lasts 110 minutes long. Also unique is their Bernardus “Prestige” Facial, which includes in-depth cleaning, a regenerating peel and a thorough lymphatic massage. They also include a specialized firming mask treatment, micro current therapy, applied serums and a rejuvenating eye treatment.
Signature treatments include something they refer to as Lavender Bliss (they actually use Bernardus estate grown lavender, so it’s fresh, fresh, fresh).
An age-defiance facial is a great choice for aging skin — they use a customized age defense peel to stimulate the dermis to encourage the natural production of collagen and elastin. Another great anti-aging option is their NuFACE Transformation Facial, which I’d love to try at a later date. They use a microcurrent device to stimulate facial muscles to help reduce fine lines, wrinkles and puffiness.
I always look for unique offerings on a spa menu, so had to try the Island Lomi Lomi Massage, which apparently is a favorite among regulars. They call it a lomi lomi inspired massage because it uses ancient Hawaiian bodywork styles, which we love. This ancient Hawaiian bodywork style uses fluid rhythmic motions mimicking ocean waves.
We started with a prayer or rather a ‘blessing’ before the therapist began, which was so lovely. They also offer add-ons to the various treatments, which includes honey, salt scrubs and more.
Other fun offerings include Sticks & Stone Massage, Soothing Stone Massage, Deep Tissue Massage, Aromatherapeutic Massage, a Japanese Balancing Massage (focused on pressure points and soothing massage), and Thai Stretch Massage. You can also get reflexology, scalp therapy, tuning fork vibrational therapy (we’re a huge fan of sound as a healing modality), seasonal body exfoliation, body polishes, detox wraps, pedicures, manicures and a hot stone foot treatment among other things.
Since we focus a lot on wellness and wellness travel at We Blog the World, we loved that the spa had a whole page of Wellness Rituals they offer, which we’d love to try on a future trip. For example, I’d love to test out their Tuning Fork Ritual which creates sound wave sounds created by Om tuning forks. These vibrations travel along meridian channels of the body and acupressure points to dissolve disharmony and tension allowing you to tune deeper into yourself. Bravo!
The Valley Cascades also sounds quite interesting, where they use a custom lavender and sugar exfoliation followed by a rose clay body mask, in an effort to stimulate the body, awaken the senses and detox. They use a lavender-infused Vichy steam to rinse away your body tensions.
There for a special occasion? They’ve got you covered with wedding and event styling, waxing, hair care (shaping, cuts, blow dries, and styling) and beyond.
Bernadus Lodge & Spa
415 West Carmel Valley Road
Carmel Valley, CA 93924
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Note: we were hosted by the spa but all opinions expressed are entirely our own.