Indulge & Escape
The Spa at the St. Regis Houston offers customized treatments that promos relaxation and rejuvenation.
By Emilia Benton and Allison Hata | Photos by Diana Simonetta
It is widely believed that the word “spa” comes from the Latin phrase “salus per aquae,” meaning health through water—so it makes sense that guests encounter a sparkling pool before being led through The Spa at The St. Regis Houston’s main entrance, providing the atmosphere of a tropical locale.
On the hotel’s second level, a peaceful, dimly lit seating area greets guests as they enter the 2,400-square-foot oasis. While The Spa at The St. Regis Houston displays modern and traditional architecture, guests feel as though they have stepped into another world when they visit for a day of pampering and relaxation. With three treatment rooms to create an intimate atmosphere, the spa’s philosophy is based on wellness and holistic therapies.
“Exclusivity and personal experience are what set us apart from other spas in the Houston area,” says Lisa Cochran, director of rooms at The Spa at The St. Regis Houston. “One reason we have only three treatment rooms is so that the guest is the main focus and does not get lost in the crowd or have to wait in line for our services.”
The spa menu is updated about once a year and features a wide range of therapeutic massage, facial and body treatments, in addition to a fully equipped exercise room overlooking an outdoor swimming pool and dry sauna, all open from 5 a.m. until 11 p.m. Guests need look no further than the hotel menu for a poolside cocktail, appetizer or entree to enjoy as they relax. In-room spa services are also available to hotel guests at an additional cost, both during regular and after-business hours.
Hosting approximately 30 guests each week, the spa offers treatments by appointment only. Weekends are sold out more often than not, so book ahead, says spa supervisor and esthetician Stephanie Devers. “Pretty much every season is our busy season,” she adds.
Relax in a Tropical Oasis
The spa staff recommends that guests arrive 15 minutes prior to a booked appointment to fully enjoy the spa environment, including complimentary hot tea and freshly baked biscotti offered prior to entering a treatment room.
The Spa at The St. Regis Houston has created an extensive menu of innovative treatments, but also includes classic options, such as deep tissue, hot stone, maternity and reflexology massages, which are available in 30- to 120-minute sessions. All spa treatments are customized to meet the needs of each guest to his or her personal satisfaction.
“The Spa at The St. Regis Houston is a charming facility specializing in personal service, which is why so many of our loyal guests continue to return when traveling into Houston on business,” Devers explains.
Upon choosing a treatment from the spa menu, guests have the option to customize their treatment based on the specific benefits they seek.
For example, before applying a client’s mask, the esthetician will confirm what type of ampoule (facial product), they would like. Should he or she choose the Cell Vitale Ampoule, they can go home and continue using it for three to four days, allowing the smaller molecules to penetrate through the skin. Another option is the Rejuvenating Pure Vitamin C Ampoule, a highly effective antioxidant treatment with ascorbic acid (vitamin C) to smooth the skin, prevent premature aging and promote hydration, skin elasticity and the synthesis of collagen. With masks, the spa also offers an Eye Rescue/Secours Ocularie, a treatment that works to naturally hydrate and smooth lines, leaving the eye area brighter, plumped and more luminous for a well-rested, youthful look.
The Spa at The St. Regis Houston is also the only spa in the city to feature the exclusive Kerstin Florian skincare line. This line contains a wide range of European facial, body and bath products and treatments for the spa industry based on natural resources, including thermal mineral water, mud, algae, herbal extracts and essential oils. Even though the skincare industry has traditionally focused on the needs and concerns of women, Kerstin Florian’s Essentials Skincare for Men is a comprehensive line developed for the specialized needs of a man’s skin.
“Since a man’s skin is much thicker than a woman’s, the skin formulations must accommodate it,” says massage therapist Patricia Olsen. “Regular shaving can often cause a host of problems, and Kerstin Florian products work to reduce the negative symptoms associated with regular shaving while protecting the skin.”
Described as the “queen” of body treatments by The Spa at The St. Regis Houston’s massage therapist Patricia Olsen, the Majestic Lulur is a warming and moisturizing herbal ritual that utilizes several different products. According to Olsen, the Javanese Lulur has been practiced in the palaces of central Java since the 17th century as a purifying ritual before marriage. This voyage begins with a hand and foot ritual complete with an organic herbal foot soak to ground and relax guests.
“You will begin your journey of beautification by enjoying a herbal steam to open up and detoxify the body, followed by an exotic lulur scrub that bestows a natural glow upon your body,” Olson explains. “A warming and moisturizing herbal body mask is then applied while the body is enveloped into a warm and secure cocoon.”
The mask ingredients include organic brown rice powder, red clay, pyrophyllite earth, sandalwood, organic clove, cinnamon, ginger and turmeric. The 150-minute ritual ends with a warm shower followed by an hour-long traditional Balinese massage that is infused with aromatic oils.
Beyond skincare products, The Spa at The St. Regis Houston caters to men with bespoke treatments, as male business travelers comprise 80 percent of the spa’s midweek clientele. Classic gentlemen’s facials and traveler’s facials are available in 30- to 60-minute sessions.
The facials for men begin with “calm mind” aromatherapy. The therapist then thoroughly cleanses the skin with a foaming cleanser containing algae and lavender to balance, followed by a toning treatment with rose tonic or aromatherapy rose water. An enzyme peel or Kerstin Florian’s Rehydrating Gommage Vegetal helps to exfoliate the skin. The therapist uses raspberry extract post-shave after any necessary extractions before acupressure point work and applying a firming extract. Finally, the therapist performs the Aculift massage using aromatherapy anti-stress oil, lavender oil or natural body oil, finishing with a costume mask, foot treatment or moisturizer and a recommendation for a home care regimen.
For a truly indulgent romantic getaway, guests can enjoy a couple’s massage in a special treatment room followed by poolside lunch. The couples’ room is decorated with lit candles and scattered rose petals for their return. “The couples’ massage is done in one ofourwonderfulrooms,”saysOlsen.“Wehavetaken much care and thought in designing our couples’ room to contribute to relieving stress: rose petals, soft music combined with soft light and candles.”
For the couples’ treatment, therapists begin with a hand massage, submerging the feet in warm water with different teas, petals and aromatherapy oils. Using special lotions, each therapist then applies a custom massage tailored to each guest.
For men or women hoping to achieve a healthy glow this summer, the spa staff recommends the Cell Vitale Facial for all skin types. With hyaluronic acid to maintain softness, the advanced serum gives a nourishing boost and provides soothing antioxidant compounds to balance reddened, irritated and sensitive skin.
“We teach our clients about the heat, sun and humidity, and that it is imperative to use sunblock every day, as the sun’s rays can cause irreversible damage that can lead to cancer,” Olsen says.
With its diverse selection of spa treatments, along with its classic spa staples and commitment to each individual’s well-being, The Spa at The St. Regis Houston undoubtedly has something for every visiting guest. Whatever the indulgence may be, the spa staff guarantees that those who visit will leave feeling relaxed and rejuvenated.
For more information or to book a customized treatment at the spa, call 713-403-2648 or visit stregishoustonhotel.com.
One of The Spa at the St. Regis Houston’s signature treatments is the Caviar Facial, a lavish treatment that uses the protein-rich fish eggs and powerful antioxidants to renew and hydrate the skin. The spa uses exclusive caviar products, infusing the skin with age-defying nutrients to smooth out lines and improve overall skin texture. This treatment includes an “Acu Lift” massage to firm and tone, as well as a Marine Biomatrix sheet that provides comprehensive hydration to highlight restored radiance.