IMG 7915Just about everything you can think of is super-sized at the Aria Resort, so it should come as no surprise that the spa is enormous as well.  Located on the Mezzanine level of the hotel, beside the entrance to the pool, The Spa at Aria has become one of my favorites on The Strip - not just for the facilities, but for the treatments and customer service as well.

The space is expansive - 80,000 square feet laid out over two floors.  The entry/foyer consists of a boutique to the left, where spa products and exercise clothing can be purchased.  Further in, past large blocks of decorative “raw” granite and water features, is the Salon, where hair can be cut and colored, manicures and pedicures can be had, make-up can be professionally done, and men’s barber services are available as well.  At the far end,IMG 7911 you’ll find the spa’s check-in desk.  The staff are helpful, friendly and in my case, have tremendous memories!  After a very long absence, I came in and was greeted by one of the young women with a big “Hi!  How are you?  How’s the writing going?”  It’s the kind of touch that makes a repeat customer feel very welcome.  The attendants at the check-in will set you up with any the treatments or services you may want, or simply sell you a day pass for the spa.

Should you elect to head up to the spa, you proceed down a hallway, past a relaxing lounge where fresh fruit and water is available, and a lovely fireplace is lit year-round.  Across from the lounge is one of the best fitness centers in Las Vegas.  When it comes to working out, I’m kind of a novice, but the equipment they have here is incredible: state-of-the-art treadmills, exercise bikes, recumbent bikes, weight machines, free weights, and even a rope climbing machine with a “never-ending” rope!  There are floor-to-ceiling windows which not only make for a bright, sunny workout, but they look out onto the pool area, so you can drool over the eye candy while working out.  It’s excellent motivation!  Bottled water, fresh towels, short term lockers, and even personal trainers are all available.  Just past the fitness center, are two elevators, which take you up to the spa itself.

IMG 7279Upstairs, the women’s spa is to the left and the men’s to the right.  Automatic doors swing open silently as you approach.  The attendants insideIMG 7283 will assign you a locker and show you around.  Adjacent to the desk, there is a lounge where you can watch the flat-screen TV, enjoy juice, soda, fresh fruit, coffee, tea or water.  Turn left and find a long hallway with frosted floor-to-ceiling windows to the left and locker alcoves to the right.  Further in you’ll find the rest room and the grooming area, all kept immaculately clean.  Towels are available in many nooks and shelves throughout the spa.  Finally, the hallway opens into the wet area, encompassing the showers, four jacuzzi tubs set into the floor - hot, hotter, hottest, and a cold plunge, a large eucalyptus steam room, an equally large dry sauna, and four chaise lounges on which you can grab a nap.  Next to theIMG 7309 chaises is a hidden surprise, the entrance to the Ahi Pool - a long infinity pool on an outdoor balcony which looks out over the swimming pool complex at the Aria.  There are more chaise lounges in which you can relax and revel in being outside!  The Ahi Pool balcony is one of the spa’s unisex areas, so swimsuits are required.

IMG 7271Actually, there are several unisex areas to the Aria spa.  Retrace your steps past the TV lounge, and you’ll find the entrance to the treatment areas.  There is a large, plush, comfy waiting room where you can hang out, either solo or with a spouse or partner, until your therapist takes you to your private treatment room.  Along a hallway that borders this waiting area, are two very special and unique rooms.  The Ganbanyoku Room, in which you relax on a tiled “bed”, warmed by specially blessed, heated black mineral stones that emitIMG 7913 negative ions and far-infrared rays,  This treatment relaxes muscles, improves blood circulation, increases your metabolism and eliminates toxins from the body.  Across from this is the Shio Salt Room, where back-lit blocks of pink salt make up several of the walls.  The salt infused air in the room is said to support healing, especially of upper respiratory issues.  IMG 7273There are vibrating, space-age gravity seats on which to recline, that come complete with headsets on which you can listen to ethereal music.  It’s all very relaxing, but I was self conscious that my snoring would disturb other guests, so I was never able to fully relax and sleep.  Still, the sense of relaxation in the room is palpable and quite tempting!  Lastly, if you want to indulge yourself, there are three spa suites - private mini-spas where parties of up to four people can enjoy treatments, select therapists, relax in a private hot tub, and even order food and drink from a special Aria dining and cocktail menu.  

Now, ordinarily, I just go to the Aria spa to use the hot tubs, take the steam and maybe grab a quick nap before heading out to do whatever the night has in store, but on my most recent trip, I decided to finally try one of their Signature Therapeutic Massages - a 50 minute, full body, deep tissue massage.  When asked if I preferred a male or female therapist, I chose a male.  My masseur was friendly and professional, checking in with me every so often to see if the pressure was too much.  I explained that I’d had sciatic issues in the past, so he went easy on my lower back.  I told him that my calves were often quite tense, as I do a lot of walking, so he concentrated a little extra time there.  He was very professional with the draping and chatted me up just enough to put me at ease.  When he really went to work, I actually caught myself falling asleep - and snoring - a few times.  I apologized, but the therapist told me that he took it as a compliment.  He felt if he could lull me to sleep, he was truly doing his job well!  I left feeling rested, refreshed, and looking forward to trying more of their treatments.

With it’s two levels, Ahi Pool, Salt Room, Ganbanyoku Beds, various lounges, and conventional spa facilities, you might think the place would be a little crazy or confusing, but that’s not the case at all.  The clean lines, grey stone walls, diffused sunlight and quiet atmosphere lend the Aria spa a very zen-like feel.  This is one place in Las Vegas where relaxation comes very easily!