We could all use a little “me” time, and we don't just mean a night at one of Chicago's best cocktail bars. The next day you can fit a little relaxation into your busy schedule, don’t forget about the best spas in Chicago. Pencil in an appointment for a massage or kill an hour at one of the city’s great salons. Many of the best spots are at some of the finest downtown hotels, so you can even make a staycation out of it. You’ll be glad you did.
Best spas in Chicago
Spa at the Four Seasons Hotel
As you may expect, the spa services at the Four Seasons are no less than divine. The curveball? A surprisingly reasonable price tag. The signature massage starts at $150, but if you're in the mood for something a little different, try the Bamboo Massage ($175 and up), which uses warm bamboo rods to melt away stress and tension. Then, snuggle up in your plush robe and slippers, sip champagne and take advantage of the amenities. You could even make a day of it and order in lunch to the relaxation room. You might never leave.
The Spa at Trump
For those seeking the ultimate indulgence, look no further than the Spa at Trump. As if the facilities themselves—aromatherapy steam room, dry cedar sauna, relaxation lounge, 72-foot pool and a health club with panoramic views of the skyline—weren't enough of a treat, the signature Gemstone Massage is the real star of the show. During this 90-minute, choreographed massage treatment with oils imported from Dubai, you can choose between purifying emerald, revitalizing ruby, calming sapphire or balancing diamond-infused oils. $300 on weekdays, $315 Fri–Sun.
Peninsula Hotel Spa
Our favorite part of spa-ing at the Peninsula Hotel Spa is the time we spend chilling in the lounge area. Single-person beds with fluffy comforters are nestled in draped enclaves. You can spend hours reading or napping, completely undisturbed—except for someone refilling your tall glass of fruit-infused water or mug of tea. Nearby, a fire flickers in the fireplace. The spa menu is pricey (the Deeply Nourishing Manicure is $65), but the top-notch products make a body treatment worth the splurge.
A good spa is all about relaxation, and this spot in River North sets the tone as soon as you show up for your appointment. Instead of sitting in a typical waiting area, kick up your feet in a calming, dimly lit, semiprivate tented chamber. The treatments here take things to the next level. Think facials featuring botanical and vitamin-rich ingredients, hot-stone massages, chakra balancing and more. On a budget but still need to relax? Allyu offers a free lunchtime meditation session the second Wednesday of each month.
Spa at Dana
Yes, a day at the spa is mentally and physically fortifying, but it seems like a stretch to call it a cultural experience. Drop by the Spa at Dana for their signature Hanakasumi body treatment ($160) and you might change your mind. Inspired by an ancient Japanese tradition, the service features warmed cherry blossom and rice powder exfoliating cream to soften skin and invigorate the body. On the flip side, you could always go with the anti-aging collagen facial ($140) or perhaps try a citrus mimosa mani/pedi ($125) if the cold has your hands and feet aching for some love.
This posh spa within the Langham Hotel features a luxury 67-foot-long swimming pool, saunas (one lined with Himalayan salt stone, another infused with herbs) and high-end "experience" showers. Weary travelers will want to book the Chuan Jet Lag Revival ($340–$365), a two-hour treatment that features a salt scrub, the Chuan Harmony Massage and a foot massage. Other services include typical spa fare (facials, body wraps, acupuncture and more), all with a luxurious twist, of course.
Waldorf Astoria Chicago Spa
This spa and health club offers a variety of high-end services. We’re talking a 90-minute SilkPeel facial for $345 and hour-long massages that start at $165. But the splurge is worth it. Every treatment at this posh spa is top-notch, and the amenities are some of the best in the city. Guests sip on vanilla bean–infused water and snack on dried fruit while waiting for their services. Plus, you can take advantage of the fitness area and the mosaic-tile pool.
The Spa at Virgin Hotels
From the moment you walk into The Spa at Virgin Hotels, you know you’re in for a treat. This super hip spa offers everything from pitch-perfect manicures and relaxing pedicures (the latter in comfy, high-back chairs, no less) to massages or some time in the hammam—a traditional Turkish bath also thought of as a cross between a steam and a sauna. The hammam invites men and women alike to socialize in a soothing, steamy atmosphere where they will feel rejuvenated. It's the perfect place to stop in between appointments for a quick nail polish change or on your lunch break for a "massage by the minute" during a busy day downtown.
Soar to this eighth floor spa in a cloud-lined elevator and melt into 9,000 square feet of premium pampering space. This New York import in the W Lakeshore hotel features 16 treatment rooms, four movie-while-you-manicure stations and a full slate of massage, nail and body treatments. The services are always top-notch here, but the treatment to write home about is the Triple Oxygen Facial ($175), which includes a targeted peel, an energizing enzyme pack and three forms of skin brightening oxygen, including an oxygen wrap and vitaminized O2 spray. Oh, and make sure you save time to hang out in the relaxation lounge, where the legendary brownie bites are worth the extra calories.
Balance Spa at Palmer House Hilton
Seeking a luxurious mani/pedi? Balance Spa won't let you down. Slip on a comfy robe and sink into an oversized plush pedicure chair with a warm pot of tea. Both hand and foot treatments include a soothing soak, exfoliating scrub, paraffin dip and massage. An hour or two at this spot will leave you feeling extra spoiled.
It's easy to spend the whole day at the spa within this trendy boutique hotel. Book the signature massage ($125–$185), which combines Swedish massage, hot stones and aromatherapy, or try one of the rotating seasonal special treatments like the Yam and Pumpkin Glow Facial ($150–$200), which uses puree of yam and pumpkin to remove dead cells, reduce the appearance of pigmentation, fine lines and sun damage. Post pampering, wrap yourself in a snuggly robe and sink into a recliner in the "whisper lounge" and nosh on a spread of fruit, nuts and specialty teas.