Willow Stream Spa
All Willow Stream Spas are only found inside Fairmont hotels and not every Fairmont has one. In fact, there are only 12 in North America and 4 in Canada. Of those four I can now say, after this week’s trip to the Fairmont Pacific Rim, that I have been to three of them. The highlight of the Willow Stream at the Empress in Victoria was the thermal mineral pool. The highlight of the Willow Stream at the Banff Springs Hotel was the mineral pool this time with waterfall. The highlight of the Fairmont Pacific Rim is its outdoor spaces but sadly the weather was not quite right for full use of these in November.
Fairmont Pacific Rim
Since Jeff was away in Vegas with the boys, a friend and I (whose husband was away in Phoenix with the boys) decided to spend an afternoon at the Spa. We arrived half an hour before our treatments, were greeted warmly in the very Zen reception area located in the 5th floor of the hotel, given a tour of the facility and shown to our lockers. The locker room was not as large as expected with about 30 lockers, 2 vanities, two rain showers, a jet shower and a steam room. Off of the locker room were two lounge areas one for Ladies only and another Unisex. Just past the lounge areas but before the 9 treatment rooms is the truly amazing outdoor space. With two hot tubs, loungers for reclining, ‘bubble chairs’ for reading and two areas for socializing around outdoor fireplaces the space would be perfect for an afternoon of relaxing – if only the weather was better. The area also has a view of Canada Place and into the Burrard Inlet.
We started the afternoon with a steam in the spacious ladies only steam room (I assume that the Men’s locker room was equipped with the same) then headed into our respective treatments. I chose the 90 minute Power of the Sea Thalasso Detox which really consists of having a jelly-like algae rubbed all over then being wrapped like a mummy in a thermal blanket. I have had a seaweed wrap before but this was quite different. It might sound ‘icky’ but it is really amazing. Jacquie chose two treatments, a facial and a massage. Afterwards we enjoyed tea in the lounge before heading home to change for dinner. More about that in another blog.
All time favorites
While the overall service, the treatment (thank you Timea) and the spa itself were really very good my all time favorite still goes to the Four Seasons Spa in Whistler. The ice shower is a nice touch after a steam, the locker rooms are huge and the view is amazing. The spa is also attached to the hotels pool area which in the case of the Pacific Rim is on a separate floor. I give the décor and the mineral pool at the Empress my 2nd favorite but my treatment here at the Pacific Rim was better so let’s call it a tie. Next time I would love to go back in spring or summer to spend some time in the outdoor spaces.
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