For some travellers, cruise holidays are all about relaxing. And whilst enjoying a leisurely breakfast in bed inside your plush cabin or soaking up the rays on a sun lounger by the pool is a great way to relax, nothing says R&R more than a luxurious cruise ship spa.
Whether you enjoy thermal circuits which you can experience at your own pace, pampering body treatments which leave you feeling like a whole new person or wellness centres which combine spa treatments with gyms to promote healthy living, we’ve put together a list of the best cruise ship spas on the seas, guaranteed to leave you feeling relaxed, rejuvenated and ready to take on the world.
The Best Cruise Ship Spas
The Lotus Spa can be found on several Princess Cruise liners, but the best ones are on the Royal Princess and the Regal Princess, both of which feature exclusive extras which make them stand out above the rest of the liners spa. Each extended Lotus Spa is located in the middle of the cruise liner and boasts a hydrotherapy pool, outdoor swimming pool, double whirlpools and couples treatment rooms where you can enjoy a world of pampering, from hydralift facials and aroma stone massages to cellulite reduction programmes and ocean wraps. Botox and acupuncture treatments are also available.
For something even more luxurious, take a look at the Spa, found on Seabourn’s Quest, Sojourn and Odyssey. Each of these cruise liners boasts a surprisingly large two-level spa complete with hydrotherapy pool, Finnish sauna, steam room, thermal suite with two herbal saunas, relaxation room with heated sun beds and a chill out zone on deck. The Spa is complemented by a roomy fitness centre which offers high-performing cardio and strength-training Technogym equipment, a Kinesis wall and complementary tai chi, pilates and yoga classes.
Canyon Ranch SpaClub
Cunard’s Queen Mary 2 features on many top cruise lists and this one is no exception. This iconic cruise liner’s spa covers 1,850m2, making it larger than some standalone spas on land. But the large space is paramount for Cunard to be able to offer its guests an Aqua Therapy Centre with thalassotherapy pool, reclining relaxation loungers, a thermal suite with sauna and steam room and chill out zone. The highlight of the Canyon Ranch SpaClub is its extensive spa menu, comprised of no less than 80 treatments which are distinctly different from the majority of cruise spa offerings. Ayurveda, reiki and ashiatsu massages are three passenger favourites.
The Aurea Spa calls the MSC’s Fantasia home and just like the Canyon Ranch SpaClub, is so complete and opulent that it could easily be mistaken for a standalone land spa. This Asian-inspired spa is staffed by qualified Balinese therapists who indulge guests with soothing facials, relaxing baths in hydrotherapy pools and innovative massages – one of which involves the use of candles. Each of the private treatments is delivered in a softly-lit room scattered with flower petals to promote relaxation. In addition to the treatments, the Aurea Spa also provides a healthy tea and juice bar, giving guests a great place to hang out pre- or post-spa visit.