Sherrie Strausfogel wrote the book on Hawaii spas. In fact, Mutual Publishing will release that book, Hawaii’s Spa Experience, this year. During the research process, Strausfogel visited more than 20 Oahu spas. While she says each spa has something special to offer, she narrowed down her favorites to the following:
Aveda Lifestyle Salon & Spa, Ala Moana Center, 947-6141. “You can get a wonderful full-on day spa experience here—haircut, manicure-pedicure and a whole range of great spa treatments. It’s also the only day spa owned and managed by Aveda, which is using it as a testing ground to introduce certain products, even some with Hawaiian ingredients.”
It’s a tie between the Kahala Mandarin Oriental’s Spa Suites (5000 Kahala Ave., 739-8938) and SpaHalekulani (2199 Kalia Road. 931-5322). “If you really want to pamper someone, maybe for an anniversary, take them to the Spa Suites,” Strausfogel says. “You have your own suite for a period, so everything is very private and magical.” The ultimate indulgence? The Piha Kino, which consists of an aromatic bath, spearmint-aloe exfoliation and a warm-stone massage. The cost for the two-and-a-half hour experience: $330. SpaHalekulani recently opened to non-hotel guests, giving Island residents a chance to sample its creative treatments. You’ll find Samoan- and Japanese-inspired massages ($180 for 75 minutes), even a steam therapy based on a traditional Tongan spirit remedy ($180 for 75 minutes).