Hot summer months are synonymous with ice-cold brews—but beer isn’t just for cooling down these days. A host of sophisticated spas are looking to beer, along with wine and even Bourbon, to soften the skin and soothe the soul. Here are our top picks for must-try boozy treatments.
Rocco Forte’s Brown’s Hotel, London
The Spa at Rocco Forte’s Brown’s Hotel in London has partnered with Wiltshire-based Warminster Maltings to create beer-intensive spa treatments using British ingredients. Maris Otter barley and British beer, sourced from the brew list at the hotel’s own restaurant, HIX Mayfair, is used for a barley body wrap $194), pale ale pedicure ($127) and honey and barley facial ($142).
“Barley has countless health benefits and is deeply nourishing, healing and comforting,” says Shareen Stokes, spa manager at Rocco Forte’s Brown’s Hotel. “It’s also high in vitamins, such as B1, B3, as well as selenium, iron, magnesium, zinc, phosphorous and copper, all of which help to keep the skin and body healthy, so it makes sense to use it in our treatments.”
Further appealing to beer lovers: All treatments begin with a hot malt drink and end with a barley snack created by Brown’s Hotel’s Pastry Chef, Theodore Ndeh, served alongside a cold beer.
The Spa at Four Seasons Resort, Vail, Colorado
This elegant high-altitude spa boasts six beer-based Brew and Renew spa treatments with suds sourced from Edwards, Colorado-based Crazy Mountain Brewing Company. For après ski unwinding, guests can choose the Brewsage ($150), which incorporates hop oil; the Cara de Luna Black Ale Wrap ($225), made from spent grains from the brewery’s darkest beer, Cara De Luna Black Ale, which is followed by a warm Mountain Living Pale Ale bath to help soothe and moisturize skin; or indulge in the Amber Ale Foot Soak ($75), complete with a crushed barley and malt scrub and a hop-oil foot rub.
“Brewing is big in Colorado, and with new microbreweries constantly popping up, craft beer is top of mind here, especially with our male guests,” says Kevin Hitt, lead therapist at The Spa at Four Seasons Resort Vail. “Incorporating craft beer into our body treatments makes the spa experience even more approachable for guys, especially when a cold beer to drink is included with each service.”
Sundara Inn & Spa, Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin
Of course, boozy spa treatments aren’t all about beer. “Throughout the ages, wine has been linked to health and longevity,” says Tara Disch, marketing director of Sundara Inn & Spa. “We chose the Olavie Chardonnay Wine Therapy products for their antiaging effects and cell and collagen renewal properties.”
During the 90-minute Toast to Life Bath and Massage ($225) guests experience a Chardonnay sugar scrub, followed by a Chardonnay bath soak and a full-body massage incorporating grape seed extract. “The Chardonnay grape-seed extract in the product line is seven times more effective than Vitamin E,” notes Disch, “and clears away free radicals, which damage and age cells.” The treatment tops off with a glass of wine from the local Wollersheim Winery.
Griffin Gate Marriott Resort & Spa, Lexington, Kentucky
You know you’re in Bourbon Country when Kentucky Bourbon pops up in local spa treatments. Whiskey lovers will appreciate the 50-minute Bourbon Bubbler ($120) treatment at the Griffin Gate Marriott Resort & Spa, which begins with a full-body brown-sugar scrub infused with pecans, ginger and Kentucky Bourbon. The scrub is followed by a Vichy shower and a moisturizing shea butter body-cream treatment to ensure you leave with skin as smooth as—well, your favorite Bourbon.
Ritz-Carlton Spa, Denver, Colorado
Among the pampering “ex’beer’iences” at its luxe spa, guests can indulge in the 75-minute Mile High Malt Scrub & Microbrew Massage ($200), which includes an exfoliating treatment with malt scrub, a stout beer mask and a scalp massage, complete with Yeti beer combined with moisturizers.
“Beer has amazing benefits for hair,” claims Allyson Fredeen, senior marketing and public relations coordinator of the Ritz-Carlton, Denver. “In addition to B vitamins, the proteins found in malt and hops are said to repair damaged hair and boost overall body. Meanwhile, the maltose and sucrose sugars in beer tighten the hair’s cuticles for enhanced shine.”
Those beer benefits work for skin, too. Consider the softening Hops N’Honey Ultimate Pedicure ($125), which incorporates a scoop of hops-based bath ice cream to soothe tired toes along with a post-pedicure sampling of three microbrews from the nearby Great Divide Brewing Co.
The Lodge at Woodloch, Hawley, Pennsylvania
Teaming up with Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, the spa at The Lodge at Woodloch offers several beer-inspired treatments, like the Royal Revival ($260–$270), a 100-minute experience (inspired by Dogfish’s Midas Touch brew) that includes a hops, barley and honey exfoliation treatment (meant to deliver a smooth dermis) and beer-bath soak followed by a relaxing massage. Guests can also try the Mud and Suds Pedicure ($95), inspired by Dogfish Head’s Palo Santo Marron, which features a warm, sudsy beer bath for feet. An exfoliation using hops and barley helps soften legs and feet, all followed by a relaxing foot massage while guests throw back a cold one.
Caudalie Vinothèrapie Spa at The Plaza, New York City
Taking cues from The Great Gatsby, The Plaza’s Caudalie Vinothèrapie Spa has released its Grape Gatsby Treatment menu, befitting the 1920s opulence of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s seminal novel. The Joie de Vivre regiment ($525) starts off with the spa’s popular Crushed Cabernet Scrub, which consists of a base of grape seed, honey, brown sugar and essential oils with the spa’s proprietary Contouring Concentrate, meant to clean and refine the skin. This dry body scrub is followed by a 50-minute massage utilizing fresh grapes to exfoliate and hydrate the skin. Rounding out a treatment is the Vinoperfect Radiance Facial, featuring essential oils, small hot and cold basalt stones, and an Enzymatic Peel Mask to apparently restore luminosity to one’s complexion.