If you’re into mud baths and thermal waters, Calistoga California is a must visit. Nearly ten years ago, I stayed at one of the oldest properties in the area — Dr. Wilkinson’s Hot Springs Resort, which is still there along Lincoln Avenue, the main drag, but a fairly “basic” stay, so despite its history, you’re likely going to want a little more comfort.
Roman Spa Hot Springs Resort for Mud Baths & Beyond
Just one block off Lincoln and smack in the middle of the town of Calistoga lies Roman Spa Hot Springs Resort, which has both standard rooms and suites with large jacuzzi hot tubs in the bathrooms. In addition to the convenient location, the property is affordable and has two heated pools, both of which have natural geothermal mineral water directly from the source.
Personally, I think the pools and the beautiful relaxing grounds around the hotel are what make it a great choice for your Calistoga stay. But, there are other perks as well.
We love that their pools are dedicated to adults and kids over the age of four years. While this may be tough for some families who are traveling with babies and toddlers, I understand why they do this and respect it.
When you come to a place like Calistoga and you’re there primarily for the healing values of the waters, the serenity can take a back seat if you have several small children jumping in and out of the pool. While that still can happen for kids over four, the fact that they put a limit on the age sends a signal to families and perhaps reminds them that there are many adults staying there for the healing thermal waters alone.
These thermal waters are set amidst a villa setting of flower-filled patios, shady arbors, bubbling fountains, and relaxing lounge areas around the pool. Whether you want a romantic getaway and your focus is sipping a glass of Napa Valley wine on your deck or around the pool, or you’re there for the healing properties of the water, we think it’s a great choice.
We loved the fact that it was a weekend when we were there in late April, albeit slightly off season, and yet there were plenty of lounge chairs around the pool for relaxing.
In other words, even on a weekend, it’s not overly crowded and guests were incredibly respectful.
The guests skewed a little older which we appreciated and I loved every conversation with other guests in the hot tub — BONUS!! One of my three mornings there, I asked a random guy who happened to be floating in their lobby area a question and he politely answered with conviction and knowledge.
Immediately after, I asked “do you work here?” He smiled and said, “Yes, I do,” and walked out the door. I had one of those intuitive feelings so I looked at the folks behind the counter and asked, “Was he the manager?” They smiled and responded, “Nope, the owner.”
Let’s just say there was a sense of authenticity, humility and grace.
Now, this isn’t an upscale luxury property, so if you’re after “super frills,” this isn’t your spot. No Four Seasons service here, but I’d argue that you don’t need it and the price is right. This three star property kinda reminded me of Manchebo Beach Resort in Aruba, which absolutely caters to adults, doesn’t have the frills and yet, you can do yoga every morning and every night and relax without kids swarming around you in the pool when you want to do nothing but relax in silence and…..just BE.
Their large outdoor pool is kept at a soothing 92° – 96°F (31 – 35°C), their large indoor spa is kept at 100°F (37.5°C), and then the small outdoor spa is kept at 104°F (40°C) and is adults only.
All pools are filled with natural geothermal mineral water directly from the source and they also have two Finnish saunas.
Their Mediterranean flowering gardens and patios with hummingbirds, ponds and fountains will also have you at hello. Although there are plenty of fabulous restaurants in the area, they also offer a grilling area, which makes it easy for people to have their own dinner on property on a few nights of their vacation if they wish.
Our time here was blessed with nothing short of “ease.” The energy on the premises is exactly what you need for your next getaway to Napa.
Calistoga should be part of that getaway, particularly if you’re mindful about healing, consciousness, wellness travel and “alone time.” Find time in your day (and week) to be alone with yourself and just reflect.
Identifying properties like this is key to your harmonious balance regardless of where your final destination may happen to be. Again, while this hotel is not your 5 star experience with 24/7 service, it is a gem “no frills” property with lovely amenities that will make your heart sing if you tap into them. (Note: DO book the corner rooms with the jacuzzi hot tubs, not a standard room!)
Below is a lovely way to greet people towards the front of the property, in the same area as the reception.
The Mud Baths at the Roman Spa
You want these mud baths to relax every part of your body while removing toxins and bringing relief deep to your muscles. The Baths at Roman Spa is one of only two places in Calistoga offering private mudrooms for two to experience the mud baths experience.
A local tradition for over 100 years, let’s just say that they are truly the gifts from the Earth! During the mud baths experience at Roman Spa Hot Springs Resort, you immerse yourself in Calistoga volcanic ash along with natural peat and mixed with their geothermal mineral water. A mineral bath followed by a relaxing cool down completes your relaxing experience. We LOVED the entire experience!
After the mud baths, you soak in a private mineral bath filled with their geothermal water that bubbles up from deep in the earth below their spa. It’s a 20 minute or so mineral bath experience followed by a cool down in their relaxation room.
The Rooms at Roman Spa Hot Springs Resort
They have standard and superior rooms at the Roman Spa Hot Springs Resort. I’d recommend the latter for a little extra space, a couch and coffee table and of course, the whirlpool tubs in the bathrooms.
The bathrooms in the superior rooms are truly a work of art. Covered in etched stone, the mosaic tile, and marble provides the look and feel from Roman times. We soaked in their oversized Jacuzzi tub every night during our stay. What a relaxing way to end your evening after a delicious meal at one of the fabulous Calistoga restaurants.
Their jacuzzi tubs are filled with geothermal water directly from the source and then afterwards, you can experience a glass walk-in shower built specifically for 2 with 2- 12″ Hansgrohe rain showers as well as an oversized traditional showerhead. Their premium bathrooms also offer dual marble sinks, soft chamois robes and slippers. Oh yeah, and there’s a wonderful gas fireplace for those cooler evenings.
Our room had a sitting area, fireplace, and 46″ flat screen TV with an enhanced sound system for both TV as well as a stand for your iPad. Their second floor rooms are enhanced with a beamed ceiling which is aimed at providing an additional airiness and feeling of expansiveness to the room.
Yellow, rust, orange, and tans add vibrant colors to the room and furnishings. A soft Andrew Morgan throw at the foot of the bed gives extra warmth on a cool evening. The bathroom with its walk-in glass shower and oversized shower head provide more than your typical shower experience.
They also offer Calistoga Kitchen Suites. Rooms in these suites offer kitchens are equipped with a mid-sized refrigerator, table for four, cook top, oven, microwave, coffeemaker, dinnerware, pots and pans. Calistoga Family Suites offer a two room guest unit, with a full kitchen and a shared bath. One suite is available with a wall-bed for added space. They also have rooms for the the physically challenged traveler.
They also offer morning coffee and tea in the lobby area every day. Two thumb s up. Would we return? You betcha! For more on the food scene, read my post on Calistoga Restaurants and the Food/Wine scene in the area. See our California page for more happy reading!
Roman Spa Hot Springs Resort
1300 Washington Street
Calistoga CA 94515
Visit their website for more information.