Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star The Ritz-Carlton, San Francisco, debuted a beautiful new 6,200-square-foot spa with three treatment rooms, a locker room area, a steam room and an ultra-stylish lobby in mid-November.
Spa L’Occitane by the Bay is the first West Coast outpost for L’Occitane, the 40-year-old French company that operates 85 spas and more than 2,000 boutiques worldwide. All of the products are developed in the South of France, and a team of highly trained masseuses and aestheticians from the brand’s headquarters spent two weeks teaching the Ritz’s 12 professional therapists exclusive L’Occitane techniques.
The partnership reflects the utmost service, luxury and standards. The result is one of the finest new spas that San Francisco has seen in awhile. We had a hard time narrowing down the list, but here are three things we think you’ll love about this beautiful sanctuary by the bay.
The spa is located on the first floor of the hotel, below the lobby. The first thing you’ll notice is the clean, all-white palette that features an ivory marble floor and snow-colored wooden furniture. The familiar L’Occitane scents of lavender, verbena and almond linger in the air.
Real candles (not the electric ones that so many spas use these days) cast a warm, elegant glow. Photos of the Provençal countryside adorn the walls, making it easy to feel instantly relaxed in this calming space.
Vases with pretty yellow flowers add a pop of color to the crisp yet inviting area. The vases are filled with the eternal immortelle, a fascinating plant that grows on the island of Corsica. The color never fades — it always remains a vibrant gold, even years after being picked. Its essential oil is the base of many of L’Occitane’s anti-aging products.
The treatment rooms are cozy, serene and candlelit. The space has a modern, welcoming vibe to put you at immediate ease.
More than 30 different services are offered. Spa-goers can choose from a variety of nurturing massages, contouring facials and ultra-rich body therapies.
Locals should note that L’Occitane has developed three special 60-minute treatments that are unique to the San Francisco spa. The first is the Tech Tension Relief that caters to hard-working professionals who spend most of their days hunched over a computer. It’s a full-body massage that targets the neck, shoulders, backs, calves and forearms in an attempt to release physical tension that’s slowly built up over time.
The second is a treat dedicated to the globe-trotting traveler who may be visiting San Francisco for only a few nights. The Jet Lag Reviver includes a hydrating foot and hand mask, upper body and leg massages, and a revitalizing mini-facial meant to brighten the area underneath the eyes.
Another special service is one inspired by the city’s finicky microclimate. The weather can go from sunny and warm to foggy and cold in a matter of minutes. The experience builds off of that idea with alternating warm and cool compresses in a wildly relaxing massage.
The long hours
One of the best things about the spa is that it’s open every day, Monday through Sunday. It also has long hours, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., so a facial before or after work can happen whenever you need it.
You could also hit up the spa to loosen up before a Saturday date night or to work the kinks out after flying in late on Sunday afternoon. It’s a sensational new tweak to The Ritz Carlton, San Francisco that will keep you coming back for more.