Inner Balance/Outer Beauty

The stunning Remède Spa at the glamorous St. Regis Bal Harbour

It’s impossible to say which sensory experience is more impactful when arriving at the Remède Spa, as they seemingly converge in well-orchestrated harmony. It starts upon arrival with the heady scent of lemon verbena, which is long recalled after the spa day is done and has a similar effect as a “travel scent,” the phenomenon experts recommend when traveling, to change one’s usual perfume with a new scent while traveling so as to recall it at a moment’s notice after returning home. A whiff of the “travel perfume” instantly transports you back to a moment of bliss and opens the flood gates to travel memories. Then there is the artistic wall of coral that rises and seemingly floats behind the opulent green marble reception desk. Upon closer inspection it is painstakingly made of hundreds of feet of expertly wound wire and is a sight to behold… another brilliantly placed piece of art curated by the masterminds at Yabu Pushelberg design, which created the St. Regis Bal Harbour and brought design continuity of the octagonal lobby space forward into the Remède spa.

Before an attendant guides guests through luxurious marble corridors that the ancient Romans would have appreciated, complete with steam, sauna, four large shower cabanas and well-lit vanities stocked with Remède and Phyto hair products, the staff presents a welcome cocktail blend of watermelon and fruit with an oshi-bori hand towel, all artistically arranged with a large yellow orchid. One woman wore it in her hair on the way out, while her companion declared, “of the thousands of spa treatments I’ve had around the world, I can remember 20. Of those 20, this is at the top of the list.”

One only needs to be in the hands of any one of 12 painstakingly chosen spa therapists to understand the root of that statement. To put it in modern television terms, they are the American Idol of spa therapists, each having been rigorously auditioned for their role, and chosen based on their expertise and talent held by a minor percentile of spa therapists for their ability to create a purely transformative experience. Each a healer in his or her own way, they take a massage experience to another level, which is evident in the Remède Customized Massage. Therapists combine several modalities and massage techniques to deliver specific effects on various parts of the body that all carry tension unevenly, are able to incorporate hot stones if one requests and always include a divine warm paraffin foot wrap and aromatherapy scalp massage as part of the treatment. After such deep relaxation, it’s no wonder therapists guide unsteady guests by the arm to rest in hushed male or female relaxation lounges or to the bright, airy open-air co-ed relaxation lounge overlooking a series of tented cabanas that evoke the Arabian Nights.

With the center of wellness defined by the Remède Spa, it’s only natural that its beauty component be of equal hushed glamour and focused results. The decadent Privé salon is entirely new and is a bastion of pampering inside the Remède Spa. Under the tutelage of stylist Eduardo Bravo (runway hairstylist for Custo Barcelona, Ports 1961 and Elie Tahari, and named “best in bridal hair” by Washingtonian magazine), the dynamic duo have a loyal following, in part by making an art out of creating flawless looks that are workable and glamorous, even with South Florida humidity, day-to-night obligations and jet set lifestyles.

“We transform the everyday girl by always following one steadfast rule: Less is more,” says Bravo. “You can have the runway look every day. Often, all it takes is one little secret of what you can use to achieve a relaxed look and still be dressed up and sophisticated, professional and fashionable.”

It’s surprisingly true and a rule the duo follows. Traditionally, the “little secrets” make the difference, yet are so fiercely guarded by top stylists that to pry them out of their hands is nearly an impossible feat. It’s a hallmark with all their treatments, from the consultation/intensive Privé mask and expert blow dry 60-minute treatment for a modest $95, to a full-blown consultation, haircut, in-salon exclusive hair treatment (“a facial for the hair”) and blow-dry; 120 minutes of ultimate pampering for $200.

For more information or to book an appointment at the Remède Spa and Privé Salon at the new, glamorous St. Regis Bal Harbour, phone 305-993-0600.

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