Words by Renae Spinks
The Gold Coast is renowned for sun, surf, sand and adventure, but it is also a golden opportunity to pour some of that glamour on yourself with a luxurious spa stay. From an express facial to a day of indulgence or a week-long retreat, you’ll find treatments to soothe all stresses and come out looking and feeling like a million dollars. Here are five of the best spas on the Gold Coast.
Gwinganna Lifestyle Retreat
Picture: Gwinganna Lifestyle Retreat
Set within the Gold Coast’s Tallebudgera Valley, the eco-tourism-certified Gwinganna is more than your typical day spa, offering retreats from two to seven days, with spa treatments available during daily Dreamtime hours. The indoor/outdoor, 33-room Spa Sanctuary has received endorsements from the likes of Hollywood heavyweight Hugh Jackman (a part-owner). Choose from a range of treatments, including massage, facials, hand and foot therapies, body scrubs, Ayurvedic aromatherapy and more. Treatments make use of heated basalt stones from Hawaii and Ireland, and Australian native herbs and essential oils.
Must try: A massage and meditation to the tune of live drumming and rain sticks. Gwinganna says the Spirit of Sound experience uses ‘the healing power of vibration’ to wake the cells and psyche.
Picture: QT Hotels
The cute SpaQ at Surfers Paradise continues the groovy QT Hotel’s retro vibe, with bright yellow chairs lined with fluffy fleeces, and staff sporting Hawaiian shirts. Its wet zone boasts a unisex hammam and an ice fountain. You don’t have to pick your treatment in advance, but can turn up on the day and make a selection with the help of your therapist from the menu of massages, wraps, foot baths, facials, and various grooming treatments. Fittingly, sea salt and sea kelp are among products applied to your body – perfect for beach bums who can’t bear to be too long from the ocean.
Must try: The signature Skin Rescue treatment promises a ‘moisture explosion’ for people who have had a little too much sun exposure. It includes a warm oil back massage, aloe wrap, refresh facial, scalp treatment and neck and shoulder massage.
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Picture: Q1 Spa
You’ll be floating as high as the Q1 tower after a treatment at the Q1 Spa. It sits in the gardens of the world’s tallest residential tower, and specialises in dual treatments – whether for couples, friends, or mothers and daughters. Choose from body exfoliations, Vichy showers, spa baths, hot and cold rocks, steam pods, far infrared treatments, facials and more. Be slathered in products ranging from crushed pearl to desert salt scrubs, ochre, peat mud and sea moss minerals.
Must try: The signature Mala Mayi body treatment has won applause from around the world, and incorporates a Mapi mud treatment, head massage, rain therapy and Kodo massage, which uses ancient Aboriginal techniques to realign energy flow.
Picture: Palazzo Versace
Submerged in the luxurious surrounds of Palazzo Versace at Main Beach, Aurora Spa has a steam room, a range of massages, smoothing treatments, aromatic baths, facials, manicures and pedicures, and more. You’ll find walnut, wattleseed, grapefruit, and patchouli salts among the natural products on offer. To really up the luxe factor, why not make spa a part of your lifestyle and become a member? You can enjoy massages, facials and rituals all year round.
Must try: The signature Allawah treatment puts four hands on one body, with two therapists offering a synchronised back, neck and shoulder massage using aromatic body oils. Add in a soothing abdominal massage and foot exfoliation and leg massage; and then an arm massage with a scalp massage, and you’ll be jelly for the rest of the year.
Golden Door Spa & Health Club
Picture: Getty Images
Head to Main Beach for a dose of holistic wellness at the Golden Door, which combines activities and spa treatments by the beach. If the Golden Door Beach Boot Camp is a little too active for you, opt instead for the spa’s energy ritual – body exfoliation, lime and mandarin wrap, facial and scalp massage. Other treatments include salt glows, Vichy showers, massages and more, all in an exceedingly tranquil environment.
Must try: The Total Indulgence package offers five hours of luxuriating – be slathered in a volcanic clay body cocoon, enjoy a scalp massage and anti-ageing facial, as well as relaxing in the lounge, eating a healthy lunch with herbal tea, and finishing off with a hand spa experience.