For a first-timer, the inaugural visit to any spa can be an obstacle. Although the concept of the spa is nearly as old as civilization itself (there are many divergent claims on the etymology of the word "spa", ranging from the Roman period city of Spa in modern day Belgium to the Roman ordinance "Sanitas Per Aquam" i.e. health through water) the art is being rediscovered by modern travelers around the world, and the operation of a spa is a growing industry across every continent. In North America alone, spas were a $14.7 billion dollar industry in 2013, performing services to 164 million visitors.
For a first-time visitor, a spa can be a mysterious, even daunting prospect. Is talking allowed? (Yes.) Will they have my size robe and slippers? (Almost always.) Is nudity required? (Usually not, but it's better.) What if the treatment is uncomfortable? (Tell them!) Spas are designed for maximum relaxation, but there are many who will forego a spa experience merely out of apprehension or misunderstanding of what a treatment will entail. As avowed "spa junkies" we've provided some helpful tips on enjoying your time at the spa of your choice, whether you're visiting a mega spa such as the sprawling, Southeast Asia-themed Spa Mandalay at the Mandalay Bay Resort in Las Vegas, or the intimate Spa Anjali at the Westin Riverfront Resort & Spa at Beaver Creek Mountain in Avon, Colorado (both recent favorites of ours).