FOR NINE YEARS NOW, Global Traveler has celebrated its annual GT Tested Reader Survey awards at the 5-star Peninsula Beverly Hills in Los Angeles, California. Each year when we descend upon the hotel for the event, it does feel a bit like returning home, or at least to what is akin to my home away from home in the City of Angels. My December 2019 visit proved no exception, although one of the property’s sanctuaries did look different. I wanted to check out this remodel of a familiar space and see the new facility. Luckily for me, that refreshed venue was the hotel’s equally stellar spa.
Last summer The Peninsula Beverly Hills completed a renovation of the 4,600-square-foot facility, located on the fifth floor near the rooftop pool, allowing for a day of pampering and relaxation. Entering the spa feels glamourous, with lit flower décor adorning the walls and clean white and gray marble surrounding reception. Fresh, beautiful floral arrangements and an extra-large, deliciously scented candle beckon patrons deeper into the ultimate relaxation zone. As the friendly receptionist showed me around the refreshed facility, she told me plans to renovate the fitness center, located directly behind spa reception, would begin shortly.
After the tour I changed into the comfy, plush robe, slipped into the slides and eagerly awaited my therapist in the refreshed serenity lounge. Post-facial, I spent a few minutes back in this room enjoying the most delicious ginger tea. Spa-goers can also enjoy light nibbles like zucchini muffins and turmeric shots here, as well as magazines and adult coloring books. The pink color on one of the walls, which dances with a butterfly motif, and the pops of pink and orange in the pillows are both energizing and calming, beckoning you to take a moment but giving you the burst you need to take on the rest of the day.
Salt seems to be having its moment in the spa world; of my last three spa experiences, The Peninsula Beverly Hills included, all featured Himalayan salt in some way. At The Peninsula, it’s in the saunas. The pink Himalayan salt dry saunas, part of the renovation, are activated by heat and aid in digestion, memory and mood by helping to release serotonin in the body. Other elements of the redesign include textured wall coverings, new lighting and art, a new hair and makeup studio — of extra importance in Los Angeles’ world of red carpets — and a spa cabana that takes express treatments, including reflexology and vitamin treatments, outdoors.
The spa menu also received a facelift to incorporate The Peninsula Hotels’ exclusive partnership with Australian brand Subtle Energies; this marks Subtle Energies’ first foray into the U.S. market. The Peninsula Chicago and The Peninsula New York also feature this venture. Treatments include Subtle Energies 24K Gold Age-Defying Facial and Subtle Energies Recovering Traveler. The Peninsula Beverly Hills also is now the only spa in Los Angeles offering two high-tech Medical Beauty Research facials, one costing approximately $1,600.
It was time for my own facial, the 60-minute BR Biologique Recherche Facial, described on the spa menu as an “intensive and sophisticated facial.” After an in-depth analysis of my skin by the therapist, who everyone I encountered told me was the best (I have to agree!), there followed a cleansing and exfoliation. Afterward, the therapist used her hands to lift my skin and muscles; the technique, as she told me, is intended to tighten the skin and promote elasticity. Careful to avoid excessive redness as it was my first time using some of the products, she was gentle yet effective. After the lifting she applied several anti-aging serums and a custom face mask formulated to match my skin type. My favorite part of the facial? The therapist used a jade roller over the cold face mask — it was so refreshing and energizing!
There’s a treatment to suit every need on The Peninsula Spa’s menu, with 12 different facials, Ayurveda aromatherapy, body treatments and eight massages. The treatments include techniques and practices from around the globe, like the Thai Table Ceremony, and some are broken out on the spa menu by the type of products used, allowing spa-goers to easily find their favorites. Spa packages, hair and nail therapies and fitness classes round out the offerings.
With my visit on the cusp of awards season, my mind wandered, wondering which celebrities would soon visit the spa to get glam. With its new design, its luxurious treatments, its welcoming staff and its 5-star facility, I’d say The Peninsula Spa at The Peninsula Beverly Hills is already red-carpet ready.
West Palm Beach, Florida, recently welcomed AKA West Palm, a hotel residence offering long-stay accommodations. As AKA’s second South Florida property, AKA West Palm features 215 hotel residences comprised of studios, one- and two-bedroom spaces, and Penthouse suites. The five-story hotel blends modern luxuries with comfort and simplicity, with sleek kitchens, washers and dryers, and private terraces. Room furnishings contrast with a backdrop of stone, metal and wood to create simple, clean lines with minimal contrast.
Experience the beauty of Alaska and save 60 percent off cruise fares on your second and fourth guests. Plus, drinks, WiFi and tips are all included.
Birmingham, Alabama, was named for the city in the English Midlands that kept the fires burning, warmed the homes and made much of the steel for the United Kingdom’s industrial revolution. Decades later, the American city also made steel, so much of it, in fact, it became known as the “Magic City” for steel production, and the moniker stuck. But today’s Magic City makes more than steel, taking the raw product a few more steps to become a major center for automobile parts manufacturing and more, including Honda, Mercedes-Benz and U.S. Steel. Thanks to local leadership and long-term planning, the magic still works for Birmingham, as evidenced by its role hosting The World Games 2022 last summer.
As New York City’s leading Latino cultural institution, El Museo del Barrio welcomes visitors of all backgrounds to discover the artistic landscape of Latino, Caribbean and Latin American cultures. El Museo’s wide-ranging collections and exhibitions represent these cultures’ richness, complemented by film, literary, visual and performing arts series, cultural celebrations and educational programs. Ranging from pre-Columbian to modern and contemporary art, the permanent collection totals more than 8,000 objects.
From 24-Hour Butler Service to a Sky Pool: Boutique Luxury Awaits at Vista Encantada Spa Resort & Residences in Los Cabos
Set on a seaside bluff overlooking Land’s End in Cabo San Lucas, Vista Encantada Spa Resort & Residences is a Baja paradise specializing in serene vistas and impeccable hospitality, offering a Pacific coast lifestyle with authentic Mexican touches. Guests can now earn a fourth night free at the stunning resort, plus a $100 resort credit, when booking through March 20, for travel through June 15.
Fairmont Washington, D.C., Georgetown recently reopened its Fairmont Gold, introducing amenities, a contemporary new style in the Fairmont Gold Lounge and dedicated concierges. The 48-room, three-suite Fairmont Gold, positioned as an urban oasis, takes over the entire ninth floor of the hotel and delivers exceptional service to meet guests’ needs.
The results are in! For the 19th consecutive year, Global Traveler conducted its GT Tested Reader Survey, asking frequent luxury travelers to name the best in a variety of travel-related categories. More than 22,000 people responded. Global Traveler’s inaugural awards were celebrated in 2004.
Copa Airlines is celebrating its 75th anniversary by showcasing a Boeing 737-800 NG in an aircraft livery that harkened back to the airline’s look in the 1990s. During that time, Copa Airlines launched an expansion of their network to become the Hub of the Americas®, changing the way to travel to and connect in our Continent.
Originally a thriving Colonial seaport, Newport became the summer playground for the Gilded Age’s elite in the late 1880s. Today their mansions dot the coast of Aquidneck Island, and their favorite pastimes — sailing and tennis — still dominate the city’s recreational offerings. In fact, Newport hosted the first U.S. Open tennis championship in 1881 and golf tourna- ment in 1895 and hosted the America’s Cup from 1930 to 1983. You can experience most of Newport on your own, including the mansions, but don’t rule out a guided tour or two when you visit.