If you’re anything like me, it isn’t so far-fetched to be counting down the days until Miraval Berkshires opens in June. But while all the amenities of the celebrated wellness resort (with sister locations in Tuscan and Austin) are unquestionably exemplary, it’s the Life in Balance Spa I’m looking forward to the most.
Though I understand the necessity of social distancing, it’s human touch I’m missing a great deal lately – especially in the name of care and healing. Whether it’s a deep tissue massage, brightening facial, or restorative Reiki, I believe hands are fundamental to our overall well-being. And when it comes to offering best-in-class treatments, ranging from the traditional to cutting-edge, few places do it better than Miraval’s Life in Balance Spas.
You can credit Simon Marxer, vice president of spa and wellbeing for Miraval Group, for much of that. While many spas are chasing trends and promoting hype, Marxer instead looks for longevity. “It’s always been Miraval’s priority to create trends, instead of following them,” he says. “The best practice is offering wellness options that are supported by science, and that our staff is passionate about.”
Marxer: It will be the largest spa in the Miraval portfolio at 29,000 square feet, with 28 treatment rooms. Of course, the spa will feature signature Miraval treatments such as Vasudhara (with a dedicated indoor pool) and Naga Thai. But the menu will also feature new treatments that were developed in partnership with leading natural beauty brand Naturopathica – like Tula, a service exclusive to Miraval.
Marxer: The inspiration for Tula was not only to provide a unique experience – but also one utilizing a combination of bodywork and other mindfulness elements to ground the individual, and inspire a sense of wellbeing. The service begins with a breath work ritual and incorporates a hand-crafted sliver of jade that’s used to glide over the individual’s meridians (a series of vital life-energy pathways) with subtle, restorative pressure. Gua sha-inspired techniques open energy channels, stimulate circulation, relax muscles, and resolve tension.
When partnering with a brand, we look for a truly organic connection as we want to ensure their mission aligns with that of Miraval. Naturopathica has consistently drawn on the benefits of holistic healing practices and herbal remedies to create innovative skincare offerings and spa treatments. Similiarly, Miraval’s spa treatments focus on healing and are rooted in the natural flora and fauna of the resort’s location. Also, both Miraval and Naturopathica prioritize the wellbeing of the individual, so the partnership felt very natural.
Marxer: I’d recommend the Sacred Sounds Massage. This meditative service combines the benefits of aromatherapy, breath work, and vibrational sound therapy with a full-body relaxation massage. The healing resonance of thoughtfully placed Himalayan sound bowls promotes balance and relaxation, while ginger root oil combines with rosemary to calm inflammation. It’s truly a transformational and balancing treatment.
Marxer: I see a rise in tech and workplace burnout, causing a greater need for wellness retreats to help combat it. We’re in the process of developing a “Work (Life) in Balance” curriculum featuring programs that address the issues of work burnout, and help our guests find balance between their home and office.
The conversation has been edited and condensed for clarity.