Valerie Wilson Travel

Top 3 Health & Wellness Destinations

From the rise of all-natural, organic products to plant-based diets and an acute focus on physical fitness, it’s clear that health and wellness is more than just a passing trend.

According to a report by Global Wellness Institute, wellness tourism is set to be a $919 billion dollar industry by 2022. With such an enormous amount of options, dipping your toes into the wellness travel pond can seem more overwhelming than relaxing. Luckily, we’re here to help! We’ve picked our favorite wellness destinations in the United States, all vetted by our experienced travel Advisors. 

The Lodge at Blue Sky – Wanship, Utah 

Situated on a 3,500 acre ranch in the Wasatach Mountain Range, The Lodge at Blue Sky invites guests to leave the cares of the modern world behind and reconnect with nature. From its organically designed rooms to its plethora of nature-focused activities, The Lodge at Blue sky perfectly captures the spirit of adventure and combines it with a modern, ultra-luxury experience. Seemingly a world away from Salt Lake City, but in reality, only a 45-minute drive away, the ranch comes complete with outdoor experiences city dwellers only dream about: horseback rides through mountain paths, fishing in miles of private waters, sunrise hikes and even private heli-skiing experiences. 

While The Lodge is certainly a luxury retreat, you can see elements of nature threaded throughout every aspect of the resort. It’s quite obvious that the contemporary décor is meant to mimic nature, and effortlessly blends into the lush landscape that the resort is set on. With neutral color schemes, wood accents and wrought iron details, The Lodge provides a wonderfully calm atmosphere. 

Outside of heli-skiing and stunning décor, the resort boasts the iconic Edge Spa, a wellness sanctuary like no other. This iconic spa invites guests to enjoy a variety of indulgent treatments and mindfulness pursuits, featuring regionally inspired treatments, guided meditation and calming yoga. Needless to say, if you’re in the market for a wellness retreat, The Lodge at Blue Sky might be a top contender. 

Insider Tip: While you’re there, check out The Refectory for dinner! This seasonally-inspired restaurant is located at the High West Distillery right on Blue Sky’s property. Guests can enjoy elevated cuisine with soaring views of the mountains, High West Whiskey craft cocktails and a selection of Utah beers. 

Canyon Ranch – Lenox, MA

Canyon Ranch is nestled amidst the sprawling scenic mountains of the Berkshires in beautiful Lenox, MA. With an easy 2½ hour drive from New York City and surrounding areas, this unique wellness retreat has the ability to transcend you to a place far removed from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. A place that allows your intentions to focus on relaxing, wellness, spirituality and reconnecting with yourself. This sanctuary is a world leader in wellness, healthy living and a top destination spa since 1979. Canyon Ranch introduced the concept of a health resort with a staff that includes dieticians, board-certified physicians and licensed therapists.

Before your visit, you’ll fill out an online health and lifestyle questionnaire, to help the resort make recommendations that best suit you, which makes for a uniquely personal experience. You can personalize everything from how many courses you eat at dinner to the specific pillow you’d like to sleep on. Rooms come complete with Mascioni linens, a sound machine, and filtered water. When it comes to dining, Canyon Ranch chefs thoughtfully curate dining options with their guests in mind, incorporating local and regional organic and/or pesticide-free fruits and vegetables.

However, the reason guests flock to Canyon Ranch is resoundingly the 100,000 square foot spa complex. Home to the legendary spa, cycling studios, tennis and basketball courts, gyms, pool, and beauty salon, plus over 40 fitness classes, this is a spa experience like no other. Canyon Ranch even offers unique spiritual experiences including clairvoyant readings, and soul journeys and acupuncture. If you’re looking for a healing spa experience, keep Canyon Ranch on your radar.

Insider Tip: Try closing out your stay with a meditative sound healing experience lead by one of Canyon Ranch’s certified practitioners. This special ceremony offers and opportunity to reflect on your time and the ranch and return to real-life relaxed and recharged. 

The Ranch Malibu – Malibu, California

Founded in 2010, The Ranch Malibu is an award winning, luxury fitness and wellness retreat set in the Santa Monica Mountains. The retreat offers completely immersive health, weight loss and fitness programs centered around daily hikes, guided exercise and locally sourced plant-based meals.

While our other two picks focus more on rest and relaxation, The Ranch Malibu focuses acutely on exercise and wellness, and is perhaps the trendiest of the three. This is not your typical spa or resort vacation, when you book the Ranch Malibu, you are booking specialized programs that are designed to help you meet fitness, nutritional, weight loss and detox goals. Each day includes 8 hours of exercise including daily hikes, core and ab workouts, body toning and sculpting, weights, yoga sessions, nap time and deep tissue massage. The rigorous daily program is complemented by a nutritionally-dense, plant-based diet to sustain you during your stay.

Don’t forget, you’ll be getting top fitness and wellness training all while staying in luxurious accommodations and eating fresh, organic, fare prepared by leading chefs. Think transformation, recalibration and unplugging. Don’t forget to keep your eyes out for their pop-up wellness programs, which take place amidst the majestic mountains in Northern Italy. If you’re looking for a completely transformative and detoxing experience, this one is for you! 

Insider Tip: To improve your results and avert the side effects of detoxing, follow the 30-day pre-arrival plan The Ranch Malibu provides!

Need some more inspiration, or ready to plan your wellness retreat? Get in touch with a VWT Advisor at [email protected]