Of course you want to know about the best spas in Barcelona. Because the world can be a tiring and stressful place, even when you’re enjoying checking out all the frankly marvellous attractions a city like this has to offer. But you don’t have to be on the go the whole time you’re in town. It’s important to slow down and relax too, and nothing beats a spa session or a really good massage to help you do just that. So we did some exhaustive research into finding the best spas across town. A tough job, but someone had to do it...
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Best spas in Barcelona
Located right at the top of the Hotel Arts, on the 43rd floor no less, the hotel’s spa enjoys incredible views of the beach. There are two areas – one for women and one for men, although mixed couples can ask to be together when making the reservation – with a hydromassage pool, a hammam and a sauna in which to sweat to your heart’s content while gazing at the horizon. The spa offers beauty treatments from Spanish skincare brand Natura Bissé, as well as massages: put yourself in the capable hands of the expert therapists, and you’ll believe you’ve made it to heaven. Admission to the water circuit area is €45. An affordable luxury.
Though it's located in the basement of Hotel Diagonal Zero, there's plenty of natural light and views over a small patio at Spazio Wellness. The spa offers everything you need to relax at a competitive price: admission to the water circuit – which also gives you access to a fully equipped gym – costs €15. And from Monday to Thursday (except public holidays) they offer a two-for-one deal if you reserve online. They also do massages (for couples, if you want) and beauty treatments.
A gift card to Barcelona’s Arab Baths is one of those reliable presents that never disappoints. Few places can compete with facilities like these: saltwater, icy, cold, warm, hot and bubble pools, plus saunas and a hammam in a setting straight out of the Arabian Nights. It’s so popular that booking can be difficult and, unlike other spas, there’s a time limit on your stay: two hours.
A stone’s throw from Plaça d’Espanya, this hotel spa has some impressive facilities: as well as dry and wet saunas, there's a bubble pool with waterfalls of different intensities, a small cold-water pool, and a pebble circuit that stimulates reflexology pressure points. The bravest souls can even dump a bucket of icy water on their heads. Access to the water circuit area costs €25, or you can buy other treatments, such as their Barcelona Signature Journey that includes a relaxing full aromatherapy massage using local ingredients, which will leave your body wonderfully balanced (€175).
Down-to-earth Barcelona is connected to Eastern luxury by a short walkway, and it’s the one that separates Passeig de Gràcia from the Mandarin Oriental, a temple to the concept of pampering, whose facilities, obviously, include a spa. And what a spa! After relaxing on a mosaic-encrusted recliner while your pores open up, and cruising a length of the 12-metre spa pool, a therapist will help you find your ideal treatment. Their signature service is the Oriental Essence, an ultra-relaxing massage during which you're daubed from head to feet with Quintessence oil, made with mandarin, ginger and frankincense – a luxury that will set you back €180 for 80 minutes.
The first boost to your general well-being hits you on the way up to the Hotel Miramar’s lofty location, high up on Montjuïc. The spa’s most spectacular feature is an indoor pool – including waterfall – illuminated by natural light from a huge window. They also have two separate spa circuits, for men and for women, with a hot tub and dry and wet saunas. One of their more popular treatments is the Mediterranean Voyage which includes a 45-minute body scrub and a 60-minute full body massage for €160 that is guaranteed to leave you in a state of bliss.
It can’t claim to be the spa with the most character in the city, or the newest, but Aqua offers fantastic services: for €105 you can enjoy an intensive facial treatment and 30-minute massage that will help you release all your stress. Perhaps the most interesting feature of the spa is that they will close the doors by arrangement, to allow a single client to enjoy total privacy.
At Rituels d’Orient, a subterranean palace just off Diagonal with all the classic elements of the hammam, including two steam rooms and a cold-water pool with salts, a sepulchral silence reigns. For €47 you can take the plunge and finish off with an Oriental exfoliation with a horsehair glove and black eucalyptus-scented soap. Under that rough surface you’ve been calling ‘skin’, there’s another layer that’s as smooth as velvet. For an authentic Moroccan experience, add a 40-minute massage with argan oil. It’s more expensive, but definitely more pleasurable.
The facilities here are more modest than some, but they do have a Jacuzzi, a hydro-massage shower, a dry sauna and a steam sauna. Plus there are four massage cabins, one single and three doubles, in case you want to take a friend or special someone. They're big on packages for couples, like the 'Romantic spa' one, where can book the spa area for an hour exclusively for you and your plus-one, and you get a bottle of cava and a fruit tray.