7 Tips for Getting the Most Out of Your Hawaii Spa Treatment

Oceanside Hale at Four Seasons Spa at Manele
An oceanside hale at Four Seasons Spa at Manele

Hawaii has many top rated spas and it is a great place to get some much deserved pampering.  If you do just a little bit of homework before you book your spa treatment, you can make sure to make the most out of it.  Here are seven tips for optimizing your pampering time.

1.  Know which spas are the best. Since Hawaii has some top notch spas, you should really try to see what makes them special.  If you are going to go to a spa, you might as well go to the best.  Here are the 2007 top spas in Hawaii as rated by Mobil Travel Guide:



Big Island


2.  Review the spa menu online and book your treatment in advance.  At about one or two weeks before you are due to go to Hawaii, take a look through the spa menu online.  You will likely find some new types of massages and treatments that you’ve not seen before.  Some special treatments book up quickly.  So, if you are dreaming of having a seaside massage, you should book it in advance so that you’ll be sure to get it  Sometimes you can find deals by combining treatments.  So review the packages that the spa offers in their online menu. Alternatively, Hawaii spas will often offer a daily special. If you can’t plan ahead, then do check for daily specials.

3.  Prepare for sticker shock. A spa treatment in Hawaii is not going to be cheap.  Forbes Magazine reports that the average cost of a massage at a day spa is $88 as compared to $138 at a resort spa.   I recently had a 50-minute massage at the Turtle Bay Resort spa on Oahu and it cost $115 plus 18% gratuity.

4. Know what is included in your treatment. Sometimes the spa menu will detail any extras, but it is always a good idea to ask what is included in your treatment when you book it.  For example, the last time I booked a treatment at the Spa Grande at the Grand Wailea Resort, the treatment included the use of their state of the art fitness center and their indulgent Terme Hydrotherapy area along with a complimentary body scrub.  Since I knew about these amenities, I arrived at the spa two hours before my appointment so that I could work out and enjoy the fantastic hydrotherapy pools.  (By the way, I highly recommend the Spa Grande.)

5.  Know what isn’t included in your treatment. Be sure and ask if there are any additional fees or add-ons that you should know about when you book your treatment.  Ask how gratuities are normally processed.  If you know before you go, you won’t be caught out and left in a awkward situation.

6. Know what you should wear. This suggestion may sound silly, but if you know what to expect before you go, you’ll be better prepared.  For example, in the hydrotherapy area of the Spa Grande, it was perfectly normal for people to walk around in the buff or in a swimsuit.  If you are a modest person, you might be more comfortable wearing your swimsuit.  So, it is always a good idea to ask what you should wear so that you will be prepared for the spa’s policy on attire and etiquette.

7.  Allow plenty of time for getting to your spa appointment. If you get to your appointment ahead of time, you will be able to relax, sip some water or tea, and prepare to enjoy your treatment.  The last thing you would want to do is to be rushed or late for your appointment.

I hope these tips will help you to truly enjoy a spa treatment on your next vacation to Hawaii.

  1. 2009 Update – Here are the 2009 Mobile Guide winning spas:
    The Spa at Manele Bay (Lanai)
    Hualalai Sports Club and Spa (Big Island)
    Spa Grande at the Grand Wailea Resort (Maui)
    SpaHalekulani (Oahu)
    Spa Suites at the Kahala (Oahu)
    The Spa at Four Seasons Resort Maui (Maui)

  2. I know this post is very old but I had a question. I’m going on vacation to Oahu in May of this year and I was hoping to have a spa day with one of my friends. I did look at the spa sites that were listed in this post and they seem a little out of our college student budget.

    I happened to see a site for a day spa in Honolulu named,Ho’onani Salon & Day Spa. http://hoonanispa.com/ I saw that they had really great prices. I was wondering if you knew anything about this day spa and if you did, would you recommend it.


  3. I am a young hotel owner in Italy, and next March I will lunch the new Spa on the first floor of the hotel. Going through the list of website you posted gave me some new ideas. Thanks a lot for sharing Sheila!

  4. Thanks for these tips! Very helpful. I think I’ll book at Spa Grande since you liked it so much! My other research also indicates its a great spa. Thanks again!

    1. Hi Jennifer — hope you enjoy your spa treatment in Maui. Please come back and let us know how you liked it.

  5. Here’s the 2011 list of Hawaii’s top 20 spas chosen by the Conde Nast Traveler readers:

    Top 20 Resort Spas: Hawaii

    1. Four Seasons Resort Hualalai, Big Island: 95.4

    2. Four Seasons Resort Maui at Wailea: 95.4

    3. Hotel Hana Maui: 95.4

    4. Grand Wailea, Maui: 95.2

    5. Halekulani, Waikiki, Oahu: 95.2

    6. Grand Hyatt Kauai Resort & Spa: 93.5

    7. Hyatt Regency Waikiki Resort & Spa, Oahu: 93.5

    8. Westin Maui Resort & Spa: 92.4

    9. Kahala Hotel & Resort, Oahu: 92.2

    10. Four Seasons Resort Lana’i at Manele Bay: 90.8

    11. Turtle Bay Resort, Oahu: 90.5

    12. Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua, Maui: 89.2

    13. Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel, Big Island: 88.9

    14. Fairmont Orchid, Big Island: 87.4

    15. JW Marriott Ihilani Resort and Spa, Oahu: 87.4

    16. Mauna Lani Bay Hotel & Bungalows, Big Island: 86.6

    17. Waikoloa Beach Marriott Resort & Spa, Big Island: 86.3

    18. Hyatt Regency Maui Resort & Spa: 85.8

    19. Fairmont Kea Lani, Maui: 85.5

    20. Mauna Kea Beach Hotel, Big Island: 84.6

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