Spanning from Eilat to the Carmel Forest, these peaceful spas can be counted on when you need a break from a busy work or tour schedule
Despite its small size, Israel can be exhausting for tourists because there are so many must-see sites to explore from the North to the Negev.
Whether you’re hiking, hopping between historical landmarks, or taking it easy on the Mediterranean beaches, a treatment at one of Israel’s luxurious spa destinations is just the thing to get rid of jetlag and recharge after a day in the sun.
Here are nine of Israel’s top spas to help you stay pampered in the Holy Land.
The Spa at Ritz-Carlton Herzliya
The spa at the Ritz-Carlton Herzliya offers a relaxing, resort-like experience just a short ride outside of Tel Aviv.
Located on the 10th floor of the hotel, the spa includes five treatment rooms, a private couples room with a Jacuzzi, a Turkish steam room, dry saunas and a fitness room. Head to the relaxation room, where lounge beds in shades of blue compliment beautiful views of the sea and the Herzliya marina, and enjoy tea and dried fruits and nuts before and after treatments.
For treatments, the spa works with a line of relaxation and beauty products from Christina, one of Israel’s premier skincare brands. Christina is also developing a special line of products exclusively for hotel guests including Dead Sea mineral treatments, contour treatments and deep healing massages.
Located on a beautiful street in Old Jaffa, hidden on a cliff overlooking the Mediterranean Sea, Yoko Kitahara is a whitewashed minimalist oasis. The Japanese spa mixes Western methods with Japanese and other Eastern techniques, offering treatments that cleanse, encourage lymphatic activity and blood circulation, stimulate energy lines and assist the natural healing power of the body.
The experience is aimed at reaching all five senses through aromatherapy-focused treatments, the sound of relaxing music and the Mediterranean waves, and the taste of Japanese green tea. No detail is overlooked, from the soothing design of the space, to the all-natural products, to the premium quality of the Japanese towels and robes.
Carmel Forest Spa Resort
The Carmel Forest Spa Resort is located in the heart of the Carmel Forest nature reserve, surrounded by stunning green views of northern Israel. With more than 70 beauty and body treatments to choose from, it’s no surprise that the spa has a reputation for being one of the best in the country.
The menu offers several techniques from the Far East, including Japanese shiatsu, Indian ayurveda, Chinese Tui Na, and Thai massage. There are also balance and release therapies, stone therapy, seaweed wraps, reiki and more. Relax in the quiet solarium afterward.
Coola is a women-only spa, run by women. Located in the Tel Aviv Port, the spa offers beautiful views of the Mediterranean and a range of treatments and packages for a relaxing day with your girlfriends. The spa’s “no phone zone” lets visitors disconnect and stay present in the moment without interruption. Upon entering the spa, your phone is deposited in a safe and returned when you leave.
Before, after or between facials, manicures and hot-stone massages, visitors can head over to Comme-Il-Faut, the in-house boutique that sells European and local designer fashions.
Cramim Spa & Wine
Cramim Spa & Wine is nestled in the Jerusalem hills within a 15-minute drive from the Old City. Taking its name from its breathtaking location in Jerusalem’s wine region (cramim means “vineyards” in Hebrew), the spa is surrounded by boutique wineries, monasteries and hidden hiking trails.
The spa includes 21 treatment rooms, including two double treatment rooms with Jacuzzis, facing the beautiful landscape. Available are body and facial treatments as well as a special vinotherapy process based on grapes and their byproducts. Following treatments, there is a solarium where visitors can relax and take in the surroundings.
Located in the Hilton Hotel, Sheva Spa brings Thailand to Tel Aviv. As the first of its kind in Israel, the luxury spa focuses on traditional Thai massage, which utilizes a series of interactive, flowing movements, stretches and massage along the body’s energy lines and pressure points.
The therapists bring an authentic experience from Thailand, greeting guests in authentic Thai dress and performing traditional rituals. Treatments also incorporate traditional materials such as Thai sesame seed oil, herbs and balms. Dry and wet saunas are available for use before and after treatments, which include a “royal” Thai massage, “Thai bamboo,” “Happy in the Heart” and more.
Elma Arts Hotel & Spa
Built into the contour of a mountain in Zichron Ya’akov, the spa at the Elma Arts Hotel is a retreat for those looking to find peace and quiet in a setting of extraordinary art and architecture.
The Elma’s appreciation for music and the arts comes through even in its spa treatments, which utilize Tibetan bowls and cymbals, drums and harps to form a connection between the mind, body and music. Creative techniques inspired by the world of sculpture are also incorporated into treatments.
The spa includes eight treatment rooms, a Turkish hamam, relaxation room and heated indoor pool with floor-to-ceiling glass walls that overlook Zichron Ya’akov and the Mediterranean Sea.
Dolphin Reef Eilat
The relaxation pools at Eilat’s Dolphin Reef offer a tranquil atmosphere for experiencing unique multisensory water relaxation. Options include several different sessions, differing in duration and level of personal attention, introducing you to techniques for relaxation in the water.
While floating in the pools, which are housed in a treehouse-like structure, the sounds of waterfalls and calming underwater music encourage visitors to loosen their muscles and release tension. There are also areas to sit and relax with views of the sea, as well as a bar for a post-relaxation glass of wine.
The Setai Sea of Galilee
The spa at the Setai Sea of Galilee is considered one of Israel’s largest and most luxurious spa complexes. It opened last summer on the eastern shore of the Sea of Galilee, overlooking the lush landscape of northern Israel.
The treatment menu offers a wide selection of massages that combine traditional Thai and Swedish techniques, as well as unique reflexology and facial treatments. During one ayurveda treatment, which focuses on rounded, soft movements and heated stones, the therapist uses crystals dipped in hot oil.
There’s also a spa at the newly opened Setai in Tel Aviv.
By: Rebecca Stadlen Amir