In a busy city like Chicago, we can all do a spa day occasionally. Spas are designed to relax the busy mind and to drift off into serene solitude after a muddled week. Whether it’s been a busy week, a special date night, or you want to celebrate a birthday in solitude, here’s never been a better time to take a break for a little R&R.
Whether you’re looking to soak away stress and restore your mental balance, alleviate aches and pains in bones and muscles, or simply find refuge in a warm bath, spas are medicine for the mind, body, and soul. From therapeutic massages to rejuvenating facials, these are the best spas in Chicago that cater to all your needs.
1. AIRE Ancient Baths, River West
Located in a restored historic River West factory dating back to 1902, these baths are inspired by the traditional Roman, Greek, and Ottoman ancient experience of bathing. This preserved structure has been restored to its original splendor, and you can now find optimum relaxation within the building’s exposed brick, wooden beams, and industrial columns.
The unique body and mind experience offers baths of different temperatures, relaxing massages, couples experiences, and more. The signature bath experience includes six thermal baths, including a hot bath, ice and cold plunges, a warm pool, a saltwater flotation, and a jet pool, making it one of our favorite spas in Chicago.
Where: 800 W Superior St, Chicago, IL
2. The Peninsula Spa, Magnificent Mile
You can bet your bottom dollar that a hotel that was recently ranked the best in the United States will have a good spa setup. Spanning the top two floors of The Peninsula Chicago, this Chicago spa offers an extensive list of modern and timeless treatments inspired by Ayurvedic and Asian philosophies. These include “an all-natural hot stone massage that combines ESPA aromatic and holistic oils with the Abhyanga body recovery massage, a spiritually rewarding Ayurvedic massage.”
The hotel also boasts a 25-meter, 82-degree indoor semi-Olympic swimming pool surrounded by floor-to-ceiling windows and a rooftop bar offering stunning sweeping views of the city. The Peninsula Spa is one of only a few in the Midwest to offer Biologique Recherche, a French luxury skincare line using highly personalized facials made from botanical, marine, and biotechnical extracts.
In addition to a fitness center, a yoga area, a sun terrace, and an array of treatments, there is a euphoric relaxation lounge where a true Zen-like state can be accomplished courtesy of fluffy comforters nestled away in draped enclaves near a crackling fire. And
Where: 108 E Superior St, Chicago, IL
3. Kohler Waters Spa, Various Locations
This 20,000-square-foot Lincoln Park spa is home to one of the best spas in Chicago, with its 21 treatment rooms, a thermal suite, a sauna, a steam room, a cool plunge pool, and an outdoor terrace. There are also 2 Kohler Custom Treatment Vichy Showers and Hydromassage Experience Pool— experiences custom-designed by Kohler’s hydro experts. You’ll find a range of state-of-the-art amenities at Kohler Waters Spa and more than 50 innovative water services, therapeutic massages, and body treatments.
Where: 2358 N Lincoln Ave, Chicago, IL
Where: 775 Village Center Dr, Burr Ridge, IL
4. Langham Hotel Chuan Spa, River North
Inside the 5-star Langham Hotel, Chuan Spa is a conveniently located award-winning spa. The spa’s many different treatments are inspired by traditional Chinese medicine, which is why the spa itself is named ‘Chuan,’ meaning flowing water in Chinese. Upon passing through the spa ‘moon gate,’ you’ll encounter herbal and salt stone saunas, oriental and eucalyptus steam rooms, and a healing liquid pool offering customized sound and light therapy, among many other amenities. Chuan Spa has something for every need, from acupuncture and cupping to HydraFacial MD facial treatments.
Where: 330 N Wabash Ave, Chicago, IL
5. Palmer House Spa, Theater District
Palmer House Hilton’s three-level health club includes the opulent Palmer House Spa and a $2.2m heated indoor pool. There is everything you could need to relax and unwind. Specialty treatments like the Chicago Fire and Ice Massage, which uses a mix of heated and cooling salts, and Honore’s Hydrotub Immersion, which uses water to relieve stress, relax muscles and help with blood circulation.
Where: 17 E Monroe St, 5th Floor, Chicago, IL
6. Allyu Spa, River North
Named after the Quechua word for community, the Allyu Spa in River North is a sustainably built and consciously operated luxury day spa. Unlike the hotel lobbies and lavish waiting areas that you’d expect from some of the others, upon arrival at Allyu Spa, you’ll find yourself waiting in a serene, dimly lit tented chamber.
That’s only the start of the unique experience offered here. Guests will walk through corridors sculpted with Wisconsin field stones and adobe cob seating before showering surrounded by Moroccan plaster walls. Allyu Spa is about simplicity over extravagance; you’ll find all the usual treatments and services here without overindulgence.
Where: 600 W Chicago Ave, Chicago, IL
7. The Spa at Four Seasons Hotel Chicago, Gold Coast
Some may recognize the 50-foot Roman-columned indoor pool and sky-lit dome from Home Alone 2. You know it’s going to be a pretty elegant setup if it’s been featured in a film, and The Spa at Four Seasons Hotel Chicago certainly doesn’t let you down when experienced in real life. A wide range of seasonal treatments and healing massages offers something for everybody, but the unforgettable ‘Skylight Swim’ experience makes it one of the best spas in Chicago for couples.
Booking a ‘Skylight Swim’ costs a hefty $800, but for that, the 50-foot Roman-style indoor pool is closed to all other guests and transformed into “an exclusive sanctuary of serenity and romance.” The experience begins with a signature couple’s 80-minute massage and concludes in the pool area with a bottle of Champagne and canapes prepared by the onsite culinary team.
Where: 120 E Delaware Pl, Chicago, IL
8. InterContinental Spa, Magnificent Mile
Another spa in the heart of Chicago’s luxury shopping corridor is a three-level facility with private treatment rooms and Finnish hot, dry saunas. You’ll find all the quintessential spa services, such as massages, body treatments, and facials, here, all available in a wide range of styles to provide the perfect experience for each body’s needs.
It’s the style of this spa, however, that makes it stand out as one of the best spas in Chicago. Boasting Gatsbyesque glamour, the InterContinental Spa is actually home to the oldest pool in Chicago and has recently undergone extensive renovations. The pool is surrounded by hand-painted Spanish tiles that give the spa a unique Mediterranean feel you won’t find in many other spas. There is also a stunning hand-carved terracotta fountain of Neptune to make you feel like you’ve escaped to another time in history.
Where: 505 Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL
9. Waldorf Astoria, Gold Coast
The Waldorf Astoria is another Gold Coast spa gem that offers a euphoric European escape. The hotel describes itself as having “Parisian-style charm, moments from Michigan Avenue, and its spa certainly isn’t lacking in elegance. Whether swimming in the lap pool, kicking back in a hot tub, or relaxing in the eucalyptus in the steam room, the 14,000 sq ft spa has everything you could need to relax and unwind. For a real reset, however, the signature five-hour Restore Package includes a massage, a facial, a pedicure, and lunch.
Where: 11 E Walton St, Chicago, IL
10. Piva Beer Spa, Noble Square
While many of the spas on this list provide lavish 5-star experiences, Piva is known for one of Chicago’s most unique spa experiences. As well as a variety of massages, facials, and your usual spa features, Piva offers heated halotherapy salt rooms which are said to be beneficial for breathing, skin clarity, and general well-being.
However, as you probably guessed by the name, that’s not the only unique option at Piva Beer Spa. The headline act is, without a doubt, the beer soaks which involve sinking back into a huge larch wooden tub filled with nearly 100-degree beer, herbs, and hops. The spa claims that the extracts of hops, barley, and brewer’s yeast can help alleviate various respiratory conditions such as asthma, allergies, and bronchitis whilst also helping to improve numerous ale-ments (sorry), such as restoring damaged skin, revitalizing damaged hair, and helping to clear acne. Antioxidants in beer alleviate oxidative damage of cells, lipids, and DNA whilst anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties help make the skin softer, clearer, and more hydrated.
Where: 1052 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, IL