On our California tour back in February we had the pleasure of encountering one of California’s oldest day spa sanctuaries. Osmosis dates back to 1985, but their signature treatment, the Cedar Enzyme Bath, is way older. This sanctuary is a feast for the senses, and I recommend you stopping by for a couple of hours next time you’re in the area.
A garden of tranquility
Osmosis is a Japanese-style retreat in serene surroundings in Sonoma County, just 1,5 hour north of San Francisco. Since 1985 they have been offering guests the ultimate relaxing treatments in serene, natural surroundings – and during my California tour I popped by for their signature treatment; a Cedar Enzyme Bath.
Upon arrival we were greeted by a friendly spa receptionist, who advised us to take a walk in the garden while we were waiting for the treatment to begin. And so we did – only to discover that Osmosis is quite different from other classic spa retreats. The garden is similar to the ones you find in Japan, meaning that every inch of it oozes of tranquility and serenity. You can go here either before or after a treatment to unwind completely and get as far away from your hectic schedule as possible. The garden The meditation garden is a labyrinth of stones, plants and water, and there are several places perfect for meditation.
Cedar Enzyme Bath
Before the enzyme bath, we were handed a kimono and guided to the peaceful Japanese Tea Garden, where our therapist awaited us with a cup of steaming herbal tea. 20 minutes here was enough to unwind completely – just listening to the sound of the purling water ads a special dimension to the whole experience. And then the enzyme bath followed in the shape of a large wooden tub in a private room. A blend of cedar, rice bran and plant enzymes imported from Japan is filled into the tub (before you jump in, that is) and you can rest here for approximately one hour. It gets rather warm, for which reason the therapist is providing you with fresh, cold water several times during the treatment. Reported benefits include: relief from muscle pains, reduced tension, cleansing of the skin and detoxification. I personally did not like the smell of the cedar (it is very strong!) but after one hour in the tub I felt both relaxed and detoxified. The skin is completely smooth and soft.
Osmosis offer several treatments including organic facials and a range of different massages. We went for a one and a half hour wellness massage.
After almost three hours at the spa, we were good to go – with soft skin and peaceful minds. Osmosis is a nice and different getaway from the hustle and bustle, and I especially enjoyed the cosy garden. Do not expect spectacular spa facilities or modern interior decorations; this place emphasizes inner peace and well-being. Located approximately 1,5 half hour from San Francisco.
For more information go to www.osmosis.com.