FX Excursions

FX Excursions offers the chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world.

Surrender to Indulgence at Maine’s White Barn Inn

by Kristy Alpert

Nov 29, 2020

PHOTO: © WHITE BARN INN

November 2020

The smell of pine needles, brine and campfire smoke released into the air as I lifted my sweater over my head, and the scents once woven into the woolen fibers now lingered faintly on my bare skin. I had spent the morning searching for sea glass along the chilled sands of Maine’s shoreline, the sounds of seagulls accompanying the rhythmic crashing of the waves as I watched my toddler fill his cup with the tiny treasures and pour the contents back out in sloppy piles along the sand.

A few sips of hot herbal tea warmed me immediately upon entering the spa, and now each scent from my clothing acted as a reminder of how I had spent the last few days of our family vacation in York County’s former fishing village, indulging in pots of sweet lobster and briny clams before shrouding ourselves in blankets during nightly campfires. I saved my ultimate indulgence for last and would soon luxuriate like an Egyptian queen in a Cleopatra-inspired treatment within the spa of Kennebunk’s quaintly opulent White Barn Inn.

The lighting was low, and the air smelled of fresh rainwater despite the low-burning fire glowing in the fireplace of the spacious treatment room. The White Barn Inn’s spa specializes in both Eastern and Western wellness rituals, and the spa’s signature upscale Maine sensibilities paint a cozy backdrop for everything from 90-minute Japanese reiki treatments and Native American raindrop therapies to hydrating wraps and river stone massages using stones from the Kennebunk River. However, it’s the Cleopatra Milk and Honey Ritual most guests choose when seeking an ethereal experience at the spa.

The ritual was inspired by the Queen of the Nile’s own beauty routines, rumored to have included “the milk of 700 donkeys” for bathing after “invigorating her skin” with salt mined in caves or harvested from the sea. The White Barn Inn Spa’s version of the ritual is a bit more refined than the Queen’s habits (no donkey milk), and an elegant, infinity-edge soaking tub acts as the centerpiece for this three-tiered treatment that takes place all in one room.

The experience begins with a gentle exfoliation with mineral-rich sea salt and local Maine honey to gently remove dead skin cells and soften the skin. All of the naturally occurring magnesium and potassium from the sea salt help to reduce any inflammation and improve the skin’s hydration, while the honey helps the skin to absorb and retain moisture, repairing any damaged skin cells. A quick rinse is all it takes before heading to the next step of the treatment, where a warm bath infused with rich and creamy milk awaits. Flickering tea candles line the tub as the milky-white water gently trickles over the rim of the infinity-edge tub.

Cleopatra may have been the first to discover the benefits of bathing in a tub of milk, but she was far from the last. Long the secret beauty ritual of numerous English queens, Broadway starlets and Roman empresses, it continues as a tradition in many parts of India and beyond … including Maine’s White Barn Inn. The fat and proteins in the milk are intensely hydrating for the skin; the lactic acid in the liquid provides ample benefits after a long and relaxing soak. There’s no need to rinse off after leaving the tub, and a toweled pathway guides guests to a plush massage table for the final portion of the experience.

Therapists use hot river stones harvested from the Kennebunk River as the final touch for fully releasing any remaining soreness from guests’ muscles as raindrops of Manuka essential oils help the stones glide smoothly over the moisturized canvas. The entire treatment lasts 90 minutes and provides plenty of time for guests to enjoy the other amenities (fireplace and raindrop shower, among others) of the spacious spa suite.

The entire inn recently underwent a renovation in which New York design firm Jenny Wolf Interiors updated each of the 27 guestrooms and cottages throughout the property with a rustic yet modern motif. Spaces are luxuriously cozy, with Fermoie lampshades and Gustavian-style pieces creating a breezy ambiance while sumptuous throw blankets from local Maine-based Evangeline prove perfect for snuggling at the end of the day.

The spa itself received a fresh coat of paint to pair with its seasonal and year-round offerings, like its popular Spa Date Night that includes a 90-minute custom therapeutic massage for two and exclusive access to the couple’s spa treatment suite after the massage to either enjoy the infinity-edge soaking tub and raindrop shower or simply to lounge by the fireplace with a glass of sparkling wine and an assortment of canapés and chocolate- covered strawberries selected by the chef of the inn.

Introducing

FX Excursions

FX Excursions offers the chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world.

#globility

Insta Feed
Daily
Mar 21, 2023

Salem, Massachusetts, Announces 2023 Festival Schedule

The town of Salem, Massachusetts, may get a lot of attention come October and Halloween, but this year-round destination offers a full schedule of festivals perfect for any season.

Share Your Travel Preferences with Global Traveler in a Short Survey & Win

Learning more about our readers’ travel habits and preferences ensures Global Traveler delivers the content you desire. As the travel industry has adapted and changed over the last few years, it’s more important than ever to connect. To best meet your short- and long-term travel content needs, please help us!

Daily
Mar 21, 2023

4 Lesser-Known Museums to Add to Your Madrid Trip

With some of the world’s most iconic artists hailing from Spain, narrowing down which museum to visit when in Madrid can be challenging. Often, the fun of visiting a museum goes away when feeling pressured to see absolutely every famous work of art in a museum. Instead of venturing to one of Madrid’s larger and more well-known museums, choose one of these lesser-known museums for an equally enriching (and less-crowded) experience:

Daily
Mar 21, 2023

7 Hotels Prepare to Celebrate the Coronation in London, Ireland, Scotland

The coronation of King Charles III will be held Saturday, May 6, and seven hotels around London, Ireland and Scotland will get in on the festivities with different offers and amenities.

Exclusive Savings: Cruise Along the Danube River with Global Traveler

Exclusive Sailing with Global Traveler

Daily
Mar 20, 2023

Luxury La Casa del Playa, Riviera Maya, Opens Estero Restaurant to Guests, Area Visitors

The 2-year-old La Casa de la Playa, an exclusive, award-winning luxury boutique hotel by Grupo Xcaret, recently announced the opening of its signature Estero restaurant to the general public.

Daily
Mar 16, 2023

Wellness, Wildlife & Scenery at Alaska’s Tutka Bay Lodge

Within the Wild Adventure Company, a transformative adventure company in Alaska, ushers in a new vision for its hospitality offerings. Celebrating 40 years in south-central Alaska, with founders Carl and Kirsten Dixon at the helm, the mutigeneration-run company now focuses on a series of new adventure and wellness programs at its Tutka Bay Lodge, including the addition of a luxury-focused collection of hospitality services to add to its already outstanding reputation in Alaska.

FXExpress Traveler of the Year

FXExpress Traveler of the Year Contest 2023