Tuesday, October 12, 2010

"Spa Day" at the Umstead Hotel & Spa

I'm a lucky woman...

My hubby surprised me for my birthday with a "spa day", a day I'd always dreamed of; however, prior to 10/2 I had never even had a professional spa massage, much less a spa day! So, when he told me he was sending me to a spa for over 4 hours at the most elite spa in the area, I was elated! After filling me in on his surprise, he affectionately told me that he had put alot of thought into this, and in fact recruited the advice of his co-workers! They all suggested the Umstead Hotel & Spa in Cary, NC, and boy am I glad he listened! I've lived in the Raleigh area for going on 8 years and since the Umstead opened in 2004, it's maintained a reputation for being one of the best hotels & spas to visit in the world. I would have never thought I'd be going there anytime soon. The Umstead Hotel & Spa is rated 5 Stars & it's listed as a member of "The Leading Hotels of the World". Wow. Upon walking into this place I could easily see why...

My appointment was for 9 a.m. last Tuesday. I was the first appointment, which meant I was doted on 100%. A great first impression indeed! I was greeted with chamomile tea and comfy slippers. Ahhhh....

My "services" for the day were a 80 minute Swedish Hot Stone Massage & a 50 minute Pomegranate Spa Pedicure. My husband set it up where I could get my massage and then have time in-between to relax before getting my pedicure. I'm a bit spastic, so it was actually hard to relax, BUT, I managed to! In this place, it wasn't hard!

After a quick tour before my 9a.m. massage I had a few minutes to relax in the lounge. Lemon/Honey water, banana chips, macadamia nuts, and fresh fruit awaited me. I sat in front of the fireplace in my robe ready to embark on the relaxing day to come. I was already in heaven and I hadn't even had my massage yet!


I honestly could have stayed in this room forever and been a-OK! After a few minutes I was greeted by my masseuse, Tamika. She escorted me upstairs to the therapy areas and showed me the zen garden and other relaxing areas to enjoy after the massage. I wish I had stayed longer to enjoy those areas. Ah well, next time. After a quick q&a, I was ready...


My "spa" look... Not necessarily my best look! :)
This was the after effect...
See the grin? Ear to ear! Even though I know I look a hot mess!
It was without a doubt the best 80 minutes of my life. Truly. The hot stones. Tamika. The setting. Everything. Just absolutely wonderful. It was now time to relax some more before my pedicure. Oh what to do...

Patrons of the Umstead Spa are able to enjoy a slew of amenities including, a steam room, sauna, whirlpool, zen garden, meditation room, pool, hotel restaurant, just to name a few. I decided on the sauna to start, but after about 6 minutes and feeling a little faint, I tried something else. I was so darn relaxed from my massage, I guess my blood pressure dropped so low I just couldn't handle the heat. I went back to my favorite room, the lounge. The banana chips were calling! ;)

It was pedicure time!
I should mention that in addition to being a virgin to spa massages, I have also never been lucky enough to receive a spa pedicure. I've only had the Walmart type of pedicures. Sad, right? This was sure to be a treat for me! I fell in love with this color immediately.
Essie's "Merino Cool"
I mentioned above it was a "Pomegranate" pedicure.. well, they actually rubbed fresh pomegranate all over my lower legs and feet. Can you say, AWESOME! What a natural exfoliant! Not to mention it smelled incredible. See the look on my face?

Again, "spa" look... not my best look! ;)
I'm actually rather ticklish, OK, really, really ticklish, but this I could stand! I was in footsie heaven. For my first spa pedicure, how amazing!

Bubbles, Pomegranate, and Chamomile... oh my!

I knew after my pedicure my spa day would be almost over, but not until after I got to enjoy their showers. And let it be known, these weren't your average, run of the mill showers... oh no... they were outstanding! Rain heads, natural lighting, frosted doors, spa quality toiletries, and terry cloth towels... again, heaven.

Was it really time to go? It was so hard to leave. I finally had started to relax! ;)

I don't know what my husband will do to top himself next time, but I'm sure it'll be something as special as my spa day. I honestly had a wonderful time there and I couldn't have been happier with my gift. I am a lucky woman to have such a thoughtful husband who would think of something like this, and it ended up being exactly what I needed!

If you live near the Raleigh, NC area and you haven't been to the Umstead Hotel & Spa, I sincerely recommend it! Wholeheartedly! You can check out their site HERE. Be sure to check out their great specials!

What a great birthday! Thank you hubby!

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