Best Saunas to Warm Your Body and Soul This Winter
With purported benefits ranging from improved cardiovascular health to chronic pain relief to stress reduction, saunas have long been sought for their healing properties. Many boutique hotels have embraced this tradition, offering on-site saunas alongside other wellness amenities. Whether dry, steam, or infrared, here are some of the best saunas at California boutique hotels.
Canyon Ranch Woodside
Surrounded by centuries-old redwoods in the Santa Cruz Mountains, Canyon Ranch Woodside stays true to its brand’s reputation as a trailblazer of integrative wellness. A chic sauna with backlit salt walls is a key feature of its saline pool and spa facility, creating the perfect setting for both relaxation and healing.
For guests at the Westport Hotel, a cozy, private sauna is just steps from their room. The beautifully renovated inn sits on the northernmost stretch of the Pacific Coast Highway, making its sauna the perfect nightcap after a long motorcycle ride up the coast or a windswept hike along Mendocino’s rugged coastline.
The Francis House
Among its many modern amenities, The Francis House in Calistoga features a truly unique infrared sauna. Nestled among lush, fragrant greenery and gardens reminiscent of the French countryside, the sauna and Halo Therapy salt room promise to stimulate circulation, improve range of motion, and promote the release of toxins.
MacCallum House Inn
Along with river stone fireplaces, private decks, and ocean views, two rooms in the beautifully restored historic barn at the MacCallum House in Mendocino sport in-room dry saunas. The Spa Suite at MacCallum Suites (a luxury mansion a short walk away), also offers its own private sauna.
Hotel San Luis Obispo
At Hotel San Luis Obispo’s eco-minded Sol Spa, every rejuvenating skin and body treatment comes with access to a restorative Himalayan salt wall sauna. Other included amenities are an indoor/outdoor relaxation lounge, fitness center, pool, Jacuzzi, and meditation room, all tucked away in a garden courtyard.
At Bavarian-inspired Hofsas House in Carmel, two European dry saunas (one each for men and women) sit adjacent to a heated outdoor swimming pool. After a leisurely eight-block walk to the beach and back, it’s the perfect way to relax, loosen tight muscles, and get the circulation going.
Downieville River Inn & Resort
Surrounded by the Tahoe National Forest in a quiet gold rush town, Downieville River Inn & Resort offers a more secluded and rustic spa experience. A wet-dry Finnish-style sauna sits across from a seasonally heated pool with barbecues and a picnic area, just feet from the confluence of the Downie and North Yuba rivers.
Stanford Inn by the Sea
Inside a large, light-filled solarium studded with lush tropical plants, the aquatic center at Stanford Inn by the Sea houses a heated saltwater pool, cozy hot tub, and comfortable lounging areas. It also features a relaxing dry sauna, the perfect foil for a rainy coastal evening or chilly Mendocino morning.