Book into one of these uniquely Australian spa experiences you cannot get anywhere else in the world.
By Ute Junker
Ready to unwind? Then you've come to the right place. Whether you find yourself in a big city or on a tropical island, Australia’s indulgent spas are known for their variety of treatments. From a massage that takes place in the Great Barrier Reef to a treatment that includes didgeridoo healing, these spa sensations are guaranteed to relax and rejuvenate you.
Hands-down Sydney's sexiest spa, The Darling Spa is also the only place in town offering this decadent caviar facial, using La Prairie's iconic Skin Caviar collection. A thorough eye and face massage will leave your face lifted and firmer than before, while your arms are treated to a caviar-infused treatment. You will leave positively glowing.
As uplifting as it is deeply calming, the award-winning Spirit of Sound experience is choreographed to a bespoke selection of music featuring live drums and percussion. Exclusive to Gwinganna Lifestyle Retreat in the Gold Coast hinterland, it uses a fusion of massage techniques, including Kahuna bodywork and heated Basalt stones. The 80-minute sensory experience is for both the masculine and feminine within the human body and acts like a ‘wake up’ for the cells while simultaneously soothing the nervous system, leaving you with a deep sense of calm.
They take their spas seriously in Melbourne, and St Kilda’s Aurora Spa has won a devoted following for treatments that combine indulgent pampering with solid results. The Cellular Hydrating Facial is no exception. Along with a deep cleanse, exfoliation and hydration, the treatment includes a surprisingly soothing ice facial massage – great for circulation – as well as relaxing massages for your scalp, hands and feet.
The Himalayan Hot Stone Massage at Chi Spa, a sumptuous Asian-inspired retreat in Sydney’s Shangri-La Hotel, is billed as a rebalance for your body and mind, harnessing the power of heated natural salt stone crystals and the Earth's frequency. Considered the purest and most beneficial salt on Earth, the heated stones neutralise the ill effects of toxic frequencies we live with. This treatment is especially excellent for treating jetlag and insomnia.
Simply walking along the isolated boardwalk that winds up towards the Southern Spa on Kangaroo Island, perched high on a cliff top, is usually enough to relax visiting guests. Top this serene experience off with The Dreaming treatment, a full body treatment that takes its inspiration from the ancient rituals of Aboriginal Australians. Enjoy a full body wrap that draws on thousands-year-old traditional healing techniques, followed by a Kodo massage, indulgent facial, hair mask and decadent hand and foot treatments. A combination of nourishing Australian native plant essential oils and extracts, cleansing earth ochres and purifying desert salts are used.
Capture the essence of the Whitsundays with a signature Whitsunday Escape treatment at one of the reef's most exclusive resorts, qualia. Your skin will be revitalised with an organic lemon myrtle and sage scrub, and replenished with a kaolin clay balancing body masque. You are then cocooned using a focused heat therapy to melt away areas of tension. After some ‘you time’ in the private outdoor rain shower, a massage is followed by a deeply nourishing hair and scalp treatment. The treatment ends with a brightening marine mineral facial for ultimate radiance.
Located on a secluded beach in the heart of the Margaret River wine region, Bodhi J at Injidup Spa Retreat offers a holistic, natural and organic treatment menu. One of the more unique spa treatments is the Li'Tya Marta Kodo Rock Massage, for which ancient primordial stones from north Western Australia are integrated into the treatment. The rhythmic body massage is inspired by traditional Aboriginal techniques, which tones and re-aligns your energy flow, using pressure points and spiralling movements.
A coastal sanctuary on the east coast of Tasmania, the Macadamia Body Scrub is an authentically Australian treatment. Using local ingredients like ground macadamia shell, bamboo enriched with ginseng, echinacea, oat flour, soothing chamomile and vitamin E, skin texture is refined and renewed.
Set in a magical location perched above waterfall streams, the Mineral Spa treatment starts with a long soak in a private spa tub in a secluded treetop cabin, where you can look out through the willow trees. This is followed with a massage to increase circulation and stimulate the lymphatic system, as well as ease the muscles.