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Loretta Carson

New York, New York Travel Agent

Spas and Wellness Travel

Many of my clients are very fitness oriented and frequently go on spa and wellness style vacations, as do I. So, when I was invited to attend a wellness seminar in Italy’s Lake District, I jumped at the chance. It was an intense training on the types of spas and health facilities and immersion experiences in treatment methods and health programs. I’m now a certified wellness planner with Travel Leaders and Virtuoso.

Resort spas around the world are excellent for many couples. One spouse can play golf, tennis or go mountain biking while the other takes yoga classes. Then they can unwind together with an indulgent soak in a hot tub or steam bath and side-by-side—or separate—massages.

European spas tend to differ from what Americans think of as spas. While Americans usually only stay one or two weeks and are focused on facials, massages, and treatments, Europeans spend up to a month and often seek a holistic health orientation. 

Many European spas are situated near hot springs where the tradition of using the healing powers of water can pre-date ancient Rome. Here, the focus is on “taking the waters” and getting active outdoors. Days might start with a 6 a.m. hike and include meetings with doctors and nutritionists so guests can bring more healthful recipes and habits home. Massages, facials, and other treatments are often part of the regimen.

For people looking for a life-transforming experience in the U.S., I recommend destination spas such as Miraval, with locales in Tucson, Austin and the Berkshires, the Lake Austin Spa Resort in Texas, and Canyon Ranch in Tucson and Lenox. People often go to these with a specific goal. It could be to stop drinking alcohol or smoking, to learn to eat better and lose weight or simply to detox, clear the brain and de-stress. 

These facilities vary greatly in their goals and style. In some, there is a heavy concentration on yoga, meditation and detoxing; others are more focused on fitness and healthy eating. Many spas incorporate herbs and flavors of the area into healthy and fun signature treatments. In wine country, there are vino-therapies. In St. Lucia, you may find yourself covered in chocolate. Great spas don’t come cheap, but there are moderately priced options, especially in the Riviera Maya and Cabo San Lucas.

I take the time to understand the goals and motivations of each trip. When a client was distraught after losing her husband, I suggested a week at a spa close to home. One of her close friends, also a client, asked what her friends could do and I suggested that they tag-team and each spend two nights at the spa with her. The woman said that having her friends come along with the yoga breathing and relaxing had been wonderful. 

Spa getaways can be helpful in adjusting your attitude and handling stress. But spas, wellness resorts, and active vacations are great choices even when there’s nothing amiss. With my training and experience, I can find the getaway that’s right for you.


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Certified Wellness Travel Specialist
Certified Adventure Travel Specialist


100 of 171 people found this review helpful

Gold Star personal services

Reviewed By Specialkls - New York, NY | Traveled to Scotland ~ Europe
Loretta is, hands down, the best travel provider I have ever worked with and I have used agents for both business and personal travel. I say “provider” because her service is greater than just booking travel and accommodations. She takes the time to really understand what you want from your travel experience. My husband and I have never been disappointed with our trips or Loretta’s suggestions; whether it be our anniversary vacation, an adventure excursion or just a quick detox weekend. She is a pro and we won’t plan a trip without her! Her personal touch is definitely a value added commodity in our busy, nonstop lives. Loretta is the best!!
I would recommend this agent to my family and friends
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85 of 169 people found this review helpful

“ Our experiences with Loretta “

Reviewed By Mark - New York | Traveled to Japan ~ East and Southeast Asia
Loretta is very hard working travel agent , who has either actually visited the vacation destination or finds a local expert who knows everything about the desired area. She is an advocate for her clients , tells it the way it is and never oversells a product. When using the services of Loretta, we know we are in good, capable hands of a seasoned professional.
I would recommend this agent to my family and friends
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