By Stacey Zable
Want to improve your health and soothe your mind, body and spirit from the stress the pandemic brought on? A wellness getaway at the120-acre destination spa Canyon Ranch in the Berkshire Mountains in Massachusetts is the perfect place to do it. More than a year-round resort designed for pampering — though there is plenty of that — Canyon Ranch offers a choice of “Pathways” targeting your particular life focus.
During my stay, I opted for the “Personal Discovery” Pathway, which allowed me to target my particular interests of fitness, mindfulness, healthy lifestyle and relaxation. The six other “Pathways” choices include “Live Your Healthy Weight” for weight management; “Optimal Health Exploration” for targeting specific health concerns and living younger longer; “Outdoor Escape” (only available April through October) taking advantage of nature’s spectacular setting; “Lifestyle Reset” with integrative wellness experts helping to guide you on a better path; “Reconnect with Joy” to help deal with loss, recover from trauma and rediscover happiness and well-being; and “Transition Purposefully” to aid in planned or unexpected career, relationship, and life transition with the help of experts as you embark on the next phase of your life.
The chosen Pathway and number of nights you stay at the resort will determine how many services will be included in addition to an unlimited choice of group classes and lectures and all meals and snacks in the package rate. My three-night stay included six chosen one-one-one services. A Healthy Eating session examined my current eating habits and vitamin intake. Stress Management provided me with among other things a completely-doable three-to-five-minute meditation. I was shown a safe way to tone my upper body at home after a recent shoulder injury through a personal training session. The rest of my three sessions focused purely on indulgent pampering through massage.
In between the Pathway services, I took Stretching, The Power of Breathe (yes, you can learn how to breathe property for stress relief and to help you sleep), and meditation group classes. My shoulder injury prevented me from taking any of the other 30-plus complimentary daily fitness classes that included TRX, yoga, Pilates, boot camp, barre, and more plus off-site seasonal hiking excursions. My husband, whom accompanied me, and I also took one of the many group daytime or evening lectures; “Replenishing the Well” focused on spiritual wellness. We watched the on-site evening Broadway in the Berkshires live musical event with that week’s super talented guests singer/actress Mamie Parris and composer Barbara Anselmi. We also walked along the resort’s on-site trails and took a 10-minute walk into the town of Lenox. It sounds like we were super busy, yet it was all very relaxing and stress-free as Canyon Ranch is designed to be.
Healthy Eating if You Want
Three included meals, snacks, beverages, and smoothies available at Canyon Ranch Grill or the more casual Canyon Rebel are made with healthy ingredients, but are not in any way a limited menu. Nutritional information and gluten-free and vegetarian options are clearly marked. There is no limit on what you can order, with dinner even offering a selection of protein, including beef, chicken, and seafood, that can be added to any of its daily entrees. There is also a selection of soups, salads, and starters with lunch and dinner. Breakfast choices are just as abundant. And every lunch and dinner there is a choice of deserts. My husband and I had soft-serve vanilla ice cream with rich chocolate syrup every night. It was the perfect serving size and it most definitely helped to soothe our mind, body, and spirit. There is also a Demo Kitchen and classes to learn how to bring home healthy cooking skills.
Accommodations and Public Rooms
The 126 oversized and lovely guest rooms accommodate 200 guests making for an intimate experience during your stay. Upon check-in, guests receive complimentary gym tote bags, T-shirts, and water bottles. The 100,000-square-foot spa houses the fitness facilities, gyms, classes, salon, spa treatment rooms, locker rooms, sauna, steam room, and Jacuzzis. The historic Bellefontaine Mansion is where you’ll find a library with beautiful architectural touches and the contemporary Canyon Ranch Grill and Canyon Ranch Rebel nearby. The second floor of the mansion is home to the Health & Healing Center for meetings with physicians, nutritionists, therapists, and more.
The extensive grounds include a High Ropes Challenge Course with zipline, climbing wall, and archery and off-site there is seasonal kayaking and cross-country skiing; some for an additional fee. There are also indoor and outdoor pools, indoor and outdoor tennis courts, and sports courts.
Canyon Ranch, Lenox is located three hours’ drive from New York City and two hours from Boston. Transportation is provided for the one-hour drive from Albany International Airport or Bradley International Airport in Hartford, Conn.
(Go Magazine Online Exclusive, Oct. 2021)
(Photos Canyon Ranch)