Girls’ weekend seems incomplete without a little spa time. Our adventures included exploring Old San Juan, dining, shopping, scuba/snorkel trip, and plenty of beach time. We headed off to the Waldorf Astoria Spa, located in the lovely El Conquistador Resort in Fajardo, Puerto Rico.
My first visit to the El Conquistador resort was last year, but this was my first spa visit. Each previous resort visit included a scuba dive, how had I not thought to follow up with a massage? Hmm.
We arrived almost 2 hours before our appointment. After parking, the signs on resort property clearly pointed us directly to the spa. Check-in reception is located on the ground level, and the actual Spa is on the third floor. There is a small shop on the ground floor for work out clothes, cover-ups, swim wear, and other items that may be needed for your resort stay. At the third floor reception we received our locker keys complete with robe and sandals, plus a quick tour.
The Spa area is simple and small, with a classic design throughout. There are several corridors of treatment rooms, changing room/lockers, pre-treatment lounge, post-treatment Tea Room, Jacuzzi, steam room, bathrooms, and showers. Everything is located indoor, on the third floor. The resort pools are accessed upon leaving the spa.
There are two large spouts high on the wall providing a lovely cascade of water into the large Jacuzzi, with plenty of natural light from the skylight above. The steam room is nestled on the shared wall of the Jacuzzi. After a quick shower, we donned our robes and enjoyed a little quiet time in the lounge before service.
According to my fitness tracker, I racked up 8 miles of walking around Old San Juan the previous day, followed by an afternoon swim at Laquillo beach. The spa appointment immediately followed a morning scuba dive trip (2 tanks). When I explained my activities from the last 48 hours, the response was reassuring agreement from my therapist that I was due for a massage. I received much needed attention to my IT band (iliotibial) and thighs. My therapist understood exactly what I needed based on my aforementioned activities. My massage was excellent! I opted for a Swedish massage and felt relaxed and recovered at the end of the hour. I will likely add hot stones to my service, or even the deep tissue massage for my next post scuba dive appointment.
After the service, I met my Spa buddy in the Tea Room. I love the coordination and ease of a well-designed post service meeting area. A common meeting room is so convenient when going to the spa as a group. There was plenty of seating and a small selection of hot teas to choose from.
We prepared and drank our tea, then compared our current state of relaxation and details of each service. My spa buddy had spent the morning snorkeling from the dive boat, and she needed (and received) more shoulder and neck attention in her massage. She also informed me that the dozen or so services she has received here are all consistently good. We will be back for more!
While the service was quite enjoyable, there are certainly areas for improvement. There were signs of wear in the showers and the furnishings all seem a bit worn. Our beverage options were limited to ice water before service, and ice water or hot tea after service. I would like to see options for flavored waters, iced tea, juice, and wine/cocktails.
We left the Spa shortly after our service. Since the spa is entirely indoor, it would be a great option for a stormy day, or rainy morning/afternoon that are common in the Caribbean. Otherwise, post treatment is the perfect excuse to lounge around one of the resort pools or take the ferry to Palomino Island for more beach time (complimentary service for resort guests).
I was given no special treatment other than being a paying guest at this Spa.
Update: I went back in October 2016, when the Spa was running special pricing for Spa Trio of Massage, Facial, and Full Body Scrub. Here is the video tour from my October visit.