Virginia: Spa of Colonial Williamsburg
Every May, Condé Nast Traveler releases its Hot List, a collection of the best new hotels, spas, restaurants, and nightspots. Check the Daily Traveler every day for a new post from this year's list.
Creative anachronisms, indeed. This spa takes its healing rituals from the past few centuries and makes them into contemporary spa sessions: Seventeenth-century Native Americans' herbal compresses become a body wrap ($265), nineteenth-century African Americans' lavender-and-rose powder mix morphs into an exfoliator ($285). It's a novel concept by spa guru Sylvia Sepielli--and an effective one, provided clients don't trouble themselves too much about the historical exactitude of the treatments, instead enjoying the soothing escape they provide in this crowded family destination. No matter what treatment you opt for, arrive early and tack on the Virginia Springs Ritual ($18), a self-service face-and-body scrubbing and soaking rigmarole using sea salt, oils, and mud (massages, $110-$120).