While a wild girls weekend away still catches the eye for brides and bridal parties planning bachelorette weekends, many are opting for something a little more relaxed these days.
Angela Adto Tepper, the founder of the luxury brand AZA Travel, explains that the pandemic has shifted people’s priorities; she sees groups planning bachelor trips that are more focused on bonding and spending time together, rather than just having wild and crazy nights out.
“We’ve been bombarded with girls’ outings in a good way,” she says. “People just really want to focus on friendships. Now it still is [fun] do something lively, as in the bridesmaids movie, in Vegas, New York City or Miami, you can have that and also a balance to feel like you’re connected and come back reborn and like you’ve had close moments.”
Both Adto Tepper and Carly Patane Moss, a travel expert at luxury tour operator Black Tomato, have seen spa getaways become popular for bachelorette trips (and travelers in general).
“What’s appealing is that the emphasis is on relaxation and well-being, and with a more relaxed cadence there’s more room to design some adventurous experiences within the itinerary,” Moss says. “Napa and Sonoma have been particularly popular lately, where yes, there is a strong wine and food culture, as well as inspiring spa and wellness treatments and fitness classes, which are becoming increasingly important for smaller groups looking to get out of the traditional boozy bach.” she shares.
Meet the expert
- Angela Adto Tepper is the founder of a luxury travel company called AZA, which focuses on all types of travel, including wellness and spa getaways. She is also a consultant at Virtuoso.
- Carly Patane Moss is a travel expert at luxury tour operator Black Tomato.
It’s worth noting that while a spa weekend is meant to de-stress, planning a group vacation can be the exact opposite experience. Adto Tepper recommends opting for an all-inclusive place like Miraval Resorts and Spas, with locations in three states. Everything is paid in advance and there is no stress about the bills during the trip. If you’re not going the all-inclusive route, she suggests planning an itinerary ahead of time and fixing all prices ahead of time to avoid “sticker shock.” When in doubt, hire a professional to plan the entire journey, from flights to meals, spa treatments and excursions, ensuring an ultra-luxurious relaxing experience.
Once you’re ready to start planning, Moss suggests considering what elements to look for in a spa property. “Look beyond just a pretty setting, see if the spa offers wellness treatments more holistically,” suggests Moss. “That’s not to say that every spa has to have a wellness partner to be great, but these tend to be some of the better ones as they think of wellness on a custom and tailored level – much more than just a deep tissue massage – for lasting impact.”
If you’re thinking of a spa getaway for your bachelorette trip, here are 12 highly regarded luxury spas in the US to add to your list.