Spas are no longer the sole property of hotels and resorts as airports worldwide incorporate increasingly sophisticated destinations for relaxation and rejuvenation.
Carriers like Air France, British Airways, Emirates and Qantas offer a variety of treatments (from express options to more involved indulgences) in their private business‒ and first‒class lounges. Independently operated outposts, such the French chain Be Relax, at the JetBlue terminal at John F. Kennedy International Airport, and Wellness Spa, at the Singapore Changi Airport, are open to all.
No matter the venue choice, travelers are eager for pick-me-ups. And the use of distinctive products, from the likes of Elemis, Dr. Hauschka and Biologique Recherche, helps keep everyone feeling ready for anything. Read on for nine airport spas to visit. —Jane Levere
Located at the Fairmont Vancouver Airport Hotel, before security and directly above the U.S. departure gates, Absolute Spa offers more than 130 aesthetic, beauty and body treatments and therapies, including facials, hydrotherapy, aromatherapy, massages, body scrubs, manicures and pedicures. Travel-inspired treatments—including a pink-grapefruit jet-lag-recovery wrap and pure natural-oxygen facials—are designed to reduce stress and beat the rigors of time changes. Spa guests also have access to the hotel’s relaxation lounge and health club, with its pool, saunas and fitness equipment. 604-684-2772, ext. 2; absolutespa.com.
Photo: Courtesy of Fairmont Hotels Resorts
Located in Terminal 2E, the lounge is accessible to passengers flying first class through Paris-Charles de Gaulle on Air France; they are personally escorted to the lounge upon arrival at the airport or check-in. Health and beauty treatments, which use Biologique Recherche products, cover face and body care, as well as massages, and are designed for frequent travelers’ needs. Guests have the option to shower and recline on a chaise longue amid relaxing, zen-inspired decor. 33-1/48-64-30-29; airfrance.us.
Photo: Courtesy of Air France
Located in JetBlue’s Terminal 5, in front of gate seven, Be Relax is part of a French chain. Open to passengers arriving at or departing from the terminal, or to those with a valid boarding pass from another terminal, the spa has a hairstyling bar for haircuts and blow-outs and two private treatment rooms. Manicures and pedicures are available, as are a variety of chair massages, facials, waxing and aromatherapy. 718-244-0756; berelax.com.
Photo: Courtesy of Be Relax
Located in Terminal 5 of London Heathrow, the British Airways option features English spa and skincare brand Elemis. First-class passengers can prebook treatments within 28 days of departure. Among the just-for-men offerings are a deep-clean aviator facial, a muscle-ease back massage and a first-class power shave designed by shave guru Richard Anthony. General favorites include a deep-relax scalp massage, a jet-lag eye-reviver treatment, manicures and a bespoke brow-shaping service for women. A massage chair is also available. britishairways.com.
Emirates Timeless Spa has a number of locations in Dubai International’s Terminal 3, including in the first- and business-class lounges and at the airport hotel. Express treatments offered free of charge in the first-class lounge include half-back massages, mini-manicures, express reflexology, blow-outs, hair trims and beard shaves. There is a charge for treatments in the business-class lounge and also at the hotel, whose spa has seven full treatment rooms and a relaxation room. The hotel spa’s signature treatments draw on rasul, Middle Eastern and Southeast Asian aromatherapy traditions. emirates.com.
Photo: Courtesy of Emirates
Located in first- and business-class lounges in Abu Dhabi International’s Terminals 1 and 3, Etihad’s spas are run by Six Senses, the Bangkok-based company whose philosophy combines “high-tech and high-touch” approaches that blend the old and the new. The spas offer 15-minute treatments that include a variety of massages for the back, feet and hands; a soothing eye-revitalization therapy; a face-relief treatment that uses jade to release facial tension; a cooling leg treatment; and a Reiki wellness therapy. sixsenses.com.
Photo: Courtesy of Six Senses Spas
Best Airport Spas (PHOTOS)