A Decadent Afternoon at Nob Hill Spa
San Francisco has a plethora of spas from which to choose, but when I am in need of pampering, one of my favorite places is Nob Hill Spa. This beautiful spa is located in the stately Huntington Hotel atop Nob Hill. To reach the spa you descend down a spiral staircase where a stunning infinity pool and beautiful skyline views await. Most spas don’t provide views, but at Nob Hill Spa it is definitely an amenity.
Guests can take advantage of the co-ed pool, Jacuzzi and Zen Room, as well as the outdoor terrace. Booking a treatment means you can linger and enjoy the property. I suggest getting there an hour beforehand to enjoy the sauna, steam and Jacuzzi. Lounging by the pool or fireplace and gazing out over San Francisco has a relaxing affect. You may not want to leave!
For a decadent spa day, go solo or with some girl friends and order lunch or a snack between treatments. Don’t forget the glass or bottle of champagne to sip while appreciating the view from the terrace or indoors by the fire. The menu includes fruit smoothies, sandwiches, burgers and other delicious choices. If you have yet to explore the Huntington Hotel, it is one of San Francisco’s grand hotels with a rich history.
Treatments are exceptional with innovative massage, body treatments, and facials. I opted for the ScenTao massage which included an exfoliation with dry brushing to stimulate the immune system, followed by a hot stone massage using aromatherapy oils. This 80-minute treatment was heavenly. When it was finally over I felt tremendous but was sorry it had come to an end.
If you have a flexible schedule, the best time to go is during the week when there are fewer people. Weekends can be crowded and since they cater to wedding parties, you can feel lost amid the couples getting pre-wedding treatments. I like to have free rein of the locker room and the facilities. Make sure you spend some time before or after your treatment in the calming Zen Room located near the fitness center. It will put you in the right frame of mind for your treatment.
Men and women will feel welcome at this spa, and they offer couples’ treatments and have several dedicated couples’ rooms. Some of the treatment rooms have fireplaces in them. Bring a swimsuit to wear in the public areas if you choose to enjoy the pool or Jacuzzi. Steam and sauna treatments are in the locker rooms and don’t require bathing suits, although most people choose to wear them there. Locker rooms are immaculate and well-stocked with luxury toiletries and bath products.
Every time I visit Nob Hill Spa I am impressed by the professionalism of the staff, eager to make my visit perfect. It’s not surprising that they have received many awards and accolades including: Travel + Leisure: Top 500 Hotels in the World (2011), San Francisco Magazine’s “2011 Best of the Bay Area,” Award-Winner: “Nob Hill Spa – Best Pamper Action,” and SpaFinder‘s2010 Reader’s Choice Award: Top 10 Best Urban Hotel Spas in the World. A gift certificate makes the perfect present for anyone who could use some special pampering. The gift shop has a nice selection of tempting items that you might need during your visit, including bathing suits if you forgot to bring yours.
The Big Four Restaurant and Bar is one of San Francisco’s best loved places. You may want to linger over a glass of champagne or martini in the historic bar with a men’s club feel to it after your treatment. Named for California’s four railroad barons who shaped local history, it has hosted powerful men for over a hundred years. The restaurant menu features gourmet fare in an elegant setting. They offer a wild game menu in the fall with exotic cuisine prepared flawlessly.
Details: Nob Hill Spa is located in the Huntington Hotel at 1075 California Street, San Francisco, CA. Phone 415-345-2888. Visit their website for more information or to book a treatment.
Getting there: They offer valet parking and there are several parking garages nearby. My favorite mode of transportation is the California Street Cable Car line stopping in front of the hotel.