Walking across the lush grounds of Fairmont Orchid on the Island of Hawai’i, I could hear the ocean before I could see its deep blues sparkling in the sunlight. Listening to that natural soundtrack blended with the scents of plumeria, watching the palm trees sway overhead, and feeling the warmth of the sun and the ocean breeze on my skin, I found myself ho‘omaha — relaxing, in Hawai’ian — as I followed my therapist to a private, oceanfront hale, or hut, at Spa Without Walls.
Inside, I melted into a deeper level of relaxation as my therapist started the detoxifying ‘Awa Earth & Fire treatment with warm coconut oil to nourish and hydrate my skin, followed by a blend of Hawai’ian botanicals used with warm lava rocks to ease away any tension my body was holding. Soothed by the sounds of the Pacific Ocean lapping onto the lava and white coral coastline just outside the hale and birds chirping to each other, it was easy to ho‘omaha.
Akin to the ‘Awa Earth & Fire, the spa menu features island-inspired treatments highlighting local ingredients and techniques used for generations, like the lomilomi massage, a royal tradition originating in the Hawai’ian Islands designed to restore one‘s mana, or spiritual energy of power and strength.
“Our spa offers a variety of treatments that allow our guests an opportunity to connect with the ‘āina (land) and feel a powerful energy as a result,” said Roselia Flandes, director, Spa Without Walls. “We’ve found that both our massage therapists and guests appreciate the integration of locally sourced ingredients and age-old Hawai’ian healing arts into our spa treatments, as it creates a meaningful connection with our culture.
“As an example, one of our signature body treatments, ‘Awa Earth & Fire, incorporates Hawai’ian-grown ‘awa, a medicinal herb, along with volcanic clay to usher in complete relaxation,” she added. “Additionally, our Hiwa-Hiwa massage is a popular treatment that incorporates volcanic mud sourced from Hawai’i Island, followed by a lomilomi-style massage. It’s truly the most delectable and relaxing way for a guest to experience their precious time on Hawai’i Island.”
Other Hawai’ian- inspired treatments on the Spa Without Walls menu include Kahinu Clear Mind, during which coconut oil, long used by Polynesians, is gently streamed along the forehead and massaged into the scalp, followed by a soothing massage of the neck, shoulders, hands and feet. The Big Island Foot Ritual uses Hawai’ian sugar cane to exfoliate the skin, followed by a mask with healing herbs and volcanic nutrients to rejuvenate the feet. The ritual also includes a neck, shoulder, arm and hand massage using coconut and lemongrass body butter and a foot massage with point-specific techniques using warm lava rocks to release tension and restore mana.
A new seasonal (spring) offering at Spa Without Walls, the Sweet Relaxation Honey Massage incorporates a honey-infused moisturizing cream using Fairmont Orchid’s own honey from its on-site hives. The honey provides antibacterial, antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory benefits and is as softening and healing as it is high in antioxidants.
For a real treat, guests can opt for the Fairmont Orchid Ali’i Royal Experience, blending two of the spa’s most popular Polynesian pleasures, ‘Awa Earth & Fire and Kahinu Clear Mind, for 110 minutes of sheer bliss.
In addition to the spa’s six oceanside hales, guests can enjoy treatments in one of eight private waterfall hales or one of four indoor treatment rooms. Inside the spa, guests will also find sauna and steam rooms, private men’s and women’s locker rooms and a full-service salon. A 1,700-square-foot, 24-hour fitness center sits adjacent to the spa and boasts Technogym cardio and strengthening equipment, not to mention a host of fitness classes intended to invigorate the body, mind and soul. Private coaching sessions are available for those looking to up their fitness game.
Or guests can find their om at Seaside Yoga and Sunset Yoga classes, with an emphasis on guided breathing, stretching and body awareness. Once balance is achieved, it may be time to try yoga poses on a stand-up paddleboard floating atop the tranquil waters in the resort’s bay. Back on land, achieve an all-body workout with mat Pilates, combining mind and body awareness, strength, stamina, flexibility and balance through Pilates techniques to improve posture and create a strong, stable foundation for movement.
Spend some time at the 32-acre oceanfront Fairmont Orchid and its indulgent Spa Without Walls, and you’ll discover it’s easy to find a sense of ho‘omaha and reconnect with your mana on the Island of Hawai’i.
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